Our 16U A1 team hosted a unique showcase this past weekend. Titled the "Sno-King Invitational,” teams from both the 16U and Hockey Prep Academy levels were present. Our 16U Jr. T-Birds played great hosts and came away from the tournament with an undefeated record.
The Jr. Thunderbirds played to a 1-1 tie with Coeur D’Alene Academy in their first game. They then defeated the Wenatchee Wilderness 7-1 and Lake Tahoe Academy 3-0, which set up a rematch in the marquee rematch game in Sunday against Couer D’Alene. The T-Birds fired on all cylinders, winning the game 6-0 to capture the weekend’s best record at 3-0-1.
The games were well attended as approximately 200 fans were on hand for each of the games played. Sunday’s contest saw close to 300 people watch the game.
16U Head Coach, Mike Butters, was delighted with both his team and the event. “All 3 of our guest teams were complimentary of the event and have already said they’d like to return if we do it again. We had interest from several other academies so we are hoping to turn this into an annual event. With the support we had, I see that happening.” Butters was also happy with his team’s performance. “While it’s still early in the season, we have already made good progress. We have a long way to go, but the group has been working extremely hard. It’s good to see them enjoy some success."
Several scouts from the BCHL and WHL were on hand to watch during the weekend. Langley Rivermen (BCHL) owner and CEO of Global Sports, Roy Henderson was on hand for Sunday’s contests. He was nice enough to visit with the 16U team after their Sunday win where he spoke to the team in detail about the trials of advancing to junior hockey. Henderson was impressed with with what he saw. When T-Birds Head Coach, Mike Butters, asked Henderson which players he like, he simply responded, “all of them.” Henderson was very complimentary of the 16U team. “It wasn’t long ago that hockey in Seattle was on the down turn. I was extremely impressed with the skill of Mike’s team. They played a very disciplined hard game for all three periods.” Henderson added, “There was some good talent here and we will definitely be back to follow up on this group.”
The Jr. Thunderbirds will now prepare for their first series of games in the PCAHA which begin this weekend.