BC Hockey announced the 35 players shortlisted for potential participation on Team BC at the 2017 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup this fall against Team Alberta, Team Manitoba and Team Saskatchewan. The Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup takes place from October 17 – 22, 2017 at WinSport in Calgary, Alberta.
The players will be evaluated by BC Hockey evaluators and the Team BC coaching staff during the first part of the hockey season with their club team, and the final roster will be announced in early October.
“After a very competitive Provincial Camp and thorough evaluation, the BC Hockey evaluation team is excited with the players selected to the short list,” said Male Program of Excellence Coordinator, Fred Zweep. “We look forward to watching these athletes in the coming months as we get down to naming Team BC this fall.”
The Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup will feature the highest rated players in the U16 age category representing the four (4) Western provinces of Alberta, BC, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The four (4) team round-robin format is the first step in the Hockey Canada Program of Excellence. The Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup is made possible through financial support provided by the Western Hockey League (WHL). The majority of players participating in the event were selected in the WHL Bantam Draft in May 2017 and many of these top prospects will play major roles with WHL clubs in the seasons ahead.
The U16 Program is the second stage in the BC Hockey Program of Excellence, which exposes players, coaches and officials to short term competition. The U16 Program also acts as a precursor to the Hockey Canada U17 Program of Excellence, which is used to identify and train players and team personnel for provincial, regional and national teams.