TISDALE, HUMBOLDT — The new Tisdale Trojans staff departed its fall camp excited for the season to start.
The midget AAA hockey team drew about 65 players from across the province to the Aug. 17 and 18 event in Humboldt. It was the first camp for the staff led by head coach Dennis Kubat and general manager Cole Simpson. Kubat said the staff was really pleased with what it saw.
“Overall, we were really happy with the forward depth that we have and all the guys we had signed and committed to early were our best guys out there and, as coaches, that’s what we wanted to see.
“It’s almost a little tease. You want the season and everything to get going.”
Many potential Trojans will now head off to Western Hockey League and Junior A camps. After the Labour Day long weekend, the team will embark on an exhibition season, which was being fine tuned at press time, in preparation for the Trojans starting the 2019-20 campaign on Sept. 21 hosting the Swift Current Legionnaires.
At the fall camp, the Trojans had on the ice every returning player who was eligible to be back except for Cade Hayes, who was already in Moose Jaw where he plans to play for the WHL’s Warriors.
While some veterans will play at the junior level this season, Kubat said it was awesome to have them in camp because it brought up the intensity even more.
“I really respect our vets that came to camp. They came and put in a really good effort. They just weren’t there for a little skate. They were there to compete and battle. They represented the Trojans program really well.”
Kubat and his staff were also pleased with the young players in attendance – some who will wear Trojans’ uniforms in future seasons. The team invited a number of 2005 and 2004-born players. Kubat said some 2005-born competitors competed in the Trojans top 40 intrasquad game and did not look out of place. There were also some 2004-born 15-year-olds who could play for the Trojans this season but will compete at midget AA where they will benefit from what Kubat defined as “being a big fish – where you get to play a lot of power play, play a lot, play 20 to 30 minutes a game and you can develop a lot that way.”
Players at the camp were broken up into four teams. Each squad played three games before the top 40 were tabbed for the intrasquad game. Kubat was pleased with that competitive contest.
“The pace was a lot higher than the camp pace,” he said. “It went really well.”
Kubat was appreciative of the opportunity to hold the annual fall camp in Humboldt. Players traveled from all over the province to try to impress the Trojans staff.
“It’s good that they want to come to our program. We have guys calling our team or calling me asking for an invite. We hope that continues and that we can keep having the winning culture that we have and keep building the foundation of being successful and being a place guys want to come to.”
While some camp attendees hail from places far from Tisdale, the Trojans also drew a strong Northeast Saskatchewan contingent that showed well, Kubat noted.
“I think that just goes to show how well those midget AA and bantam AA programs run in the Northeast,” he said. “They are always really competitive... It is great to see those guys out at our camp.”