Tough choices

Truro Daily News - - SPORTS - Gerry hale is me­dia re­la­tions co-or­di­na­tor of the truro bearcats ju­nior a hockey club.

The ini­tial im­pres­sions were all pos­i­tive.

The 36 prospects re­ported to Truro Bearcats train­ing camp well pre­pared for the fit­ness com­po­nent and it was ob­vi­ous few were hav­ing their first skate in Au­gust.

The mesh­ing of re­turnees, draft picks, ac­qui­si­tions and in­vites makes for in­ter­est­ing times. They all want the same thing but that’s not pos­si­ble.

The Bearcat goal is to ice a com­pet­i­tive team, make the play­offs, then see what hap­pens. That’s a plan that’s worked for the last 20 years, with­out fail.

The coach­ing staff re­turns in­tact – coach Shawn Evans (16th year), as­sis­tants Jamie Bar­bour (9th year), Joel Isenor and TJ Smith, both for sec­ond con­sec­u­tive sea­sons.

Col­lec­tively, they know what they’re look­ing for and will have some tough choices to face in the com­ing days and weeks. Ac­tu­ally, that’s a good prob­lem to have.

Right now, the play­ers are given ev­ery op­por­tu­nity to show their wares. Even though play is largely un­struc­tured, the skill level has cre­ated some nat­u­ral flow and in­ten­sity.

The will­ing­ness to com­pete plays a large role in up­com­ing se­lec­tions. This el­e­ment of the game al­lowed last year’s team to pull out wins late in games. The de­sire to go the dis­tance has to be ev­i­dent.

Wed­nes­day’s game in Ber­wick gave a lot of new­com­ers the op­por­tu­nity to play with the “T” on their chest. It should mean some­thing.

Satur­day, Bearcat fol­low­ers will have their first chance to see more Bearcat prospects square­off with MHL ri­val, the Val­ley Wild­cats. That game gets un­der­way 7 p.m. at the RECC ($5.00 Ad­mis­sion).

The process of trim­ming the roster will pick up fol­low­ing that game as the open­ing of reg­u­lar season quickly ap­proaches. The hard work be­gins.

Bearcat suc­cess is well doc­u­mented. For a young player, this is a great spot to play the ju­nior years, for many rea­sons. Un­for­tu­nately, they can’t all stay.

This sce­nario is play­ing out in all the other MHL fran­chises as well. It’s never easy but comes with the ter­ri­tory.

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