Thursday, October 23, 2014
BC Hockey announced on October 23 changes to the Male High Performance program. The changes include a restructuring of the Male U16 Program and the introduction of a Male U15 program.
The Male U15 High Performance Program will be introduced in April, 2015 with open Region Camps. Players who are eligible to attend a BC Hockey Championship (Tier 1, 2, 3 & 4) or attending a Hockey Canada Sport School or a player on the top two (2) Bantam teams in the Minor Hockey Association are eligible to attend the Region Camps. Players will be evaluated at the Region Camps and the top 160 players will be selected to attend a Provincial Tournament in May. More details and Region Camp registration information will be released at a later date.
The Male U16 Program has eliminated Region Camps and will evaluate eligible players during the season with their Club Teams. The Male U16 BC Cup will continue to be held in April and the top 120 players will be invited to attend a jamboree style tournament. The Male U16 Provincial Camp, which introduces high performance athletes to the most up to date information and concepts as they relate to both National and International levels of hockey, will remain. Players will be selected from the Male U16 BC Cup to attend the camp in July.
Says Russ Weber, Male High Performance Branch Coordinator, “The changes to the Male High Performance program will really help develop players and prepare them for short-term competitions such as the Western Canada Challenge Cup, a regional event, and the Canada Winter Games, a national event. With BC Hockey beginning its Male U15 Program and having a provincial event, it prepares the players and begins the process of focusing on events earlier in the development process.”
The changes are being made in response to the move of the U17 program to Hockey Canada’s jurisdiction. Players are now invited to attend a National Development Camp which led to selections for the World U17 Hockey Challenge. This year, five (5) BC players were selected for the International Competition.
The BC Hockey Male High Performance Program was introduced in 1980 with the mandate to systematically identify and train the province's elite-level players for high performance hockey sporting events. The overall objective of the program is to increase the chances of athletes from BC to compete provincially, regionally, nationally and internationally with the ultimate goal being selected to Hockey Canada’s National Junior or National Senior Team.