FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The rosters for the 2021 Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup in Red Deer have been named, and two Fort St. John Minor Hockey products made Team BC.
Fort St. John’s Evan Gardner and Chetwynd’s Cayden Lindstrom will represent British Columbia at the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup.
Gardner, a goalie who plays for Rink Hockey Academy Kelowna, will get his chance to impress scouts from all over Western Canada when he takes the crease in late October.
Lindstrom is a left-handed forward who plays for Delta Hockey Academy in Vancouver this season. In five games, he has six goals and nine assists for 15 points.
The Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup features the highest-ranked players in the under-16 age group from the four provinces that feed into the Western Hockey League, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
The four-team round-robin is an athlete’s first step into Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence, and it helps the provincial hockey associations evaluate their top prospects for future high-performance programs.
According to the Western Hockey League, the majority of players participating in the event were chosen in the WHL Bantam Draft, and many of those players will go on to play major roles on their respective WHL teams.
The first-ever Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup was held in Blackfalds, AB, in 2009. Four of the top eight NHL draft picks in 2012 were featured at that tournament, including Morgan Rielly and Matt Dumba.
Team BC will open the tournament in Red Deer against Team Saskatchewan on October 20th at 4 p.m.