You do not have to look far to see the true spirit of hockey at the World Under-17 Hockey Championship. Just ask Team Pacific about their experience with some young hockey players from Southern Alberta. Mitch Fadden, forward for Team Pacific introduced his 6 year old buddy Justin, at the pre game meal.
"He's hanging with me today", beamed Fadden about his young apprentice.
Four teams from the Southern Alberta area had a chance to participate in a tournament experience with Team Pacific. First Savings Credit Union 'Raiders', and Bert & Mac's 'Kings' had a chance to tour the dressing room of Team Pacific at the Enmax Centre. The Shoppers Drug Mart 'Sharks', had a chance to eat a pre-game meal with the team, and the Atom Draffins Pharmasave 'Leafs', won the grand prize which was a chance to skate and have their picture taken with Team Pacific.
Each team was picked from a draw among many initiation, novice and atom teams that bought game packages to the tournament. Austin, from the Atom Leafs, one of the kids that participated in the grand prize skate, said that his team was happy and were all smiling when they heard the news .
Names like Leer, Weersink, Ramsdell and the rest of the Leafs, lined the bench awaiting to jump on the ice to skate with names like Maxwell, Dudas, Novak and the rest of Team Pacific. The practice included a chance to play a mini game with Team Pacific and later participate in a passing and breakaway drill.
Travis Novak who was born and raised in Lethbridge said the experience was very rewarding. "It's fun, I remember what it was like to be this young and how I was a lot like these kids".
Team Pacific also gave some souvenirs to the kids so that they would have something in addition to the amazing memories to remember their experience at the Under-17 World Hockey Championship.
The minor hockey players summed up their experience in a way which they perceive the game, cool, exciting, and fun.