The IHACT Junior Academy has wrapped up for another year with 37 attending the 5 sessions over February and March. The children were aged from 5yrs to 16yrs and for most this was their first time on the ice, let alone with a stick and puck.
Our dedicated junior coaches, Mike Sargeant, Matt Taylor, Clinton Hart, Matt Doornbos and junior players Jake and Nick Doornbos and Maddie Prescott were also on the ice each and every week supporting the kids and coaches.
By the end of the last session they could skate backwards, were practicing their stopping and turning and playing games against the coaches. While falling is part of learning their determination to get up and try again was amazing to watch. They were never on the ice for long.
IHACT went down to the last session to ask some of the parents what they thought of the academy.
“Luke (aged 5yrs) is loving it and is ready to sign up for the season. We really love how the older kids are helping the little ones.”
“Alexander (aged 5yrs) is loving it. He’s skating has improved so much and he is trying hockey stops and tricky moves. He said he is going to be playing for the Redbacks this year.”
“We have 2 boys aged 5 and this is their first time on the ice. We look forward to it every week.”
Andrew Nathan, also a local hockey player has 3 girls – Emaya 4yrs, Isabella 6yrs and Allira 8yrs all in the academy program. After trying several other sports from little athletes to basketball they have finally found their sport. Emaya being one of the youngest was scared of falling over, but thanks to Maddie’s support on the ice isn’t afraid anymore. Though she’ll only play if Maddie is there. Allira now dreams of playing College hockey and all the girls are taking their sticks to bed. The only problem now is Andrew is an avid Northstars fan and the girls are Brave girls all the way.
We hope all the children and parents have had a great time and are keen to join our Squirts, Atoms, Peewee, Bantam or Midget leagues this winter.
A big thank you to Di Doornbos for all her time and effort putting on another successful academy. We couldn’t do it without you.
If you would like more information about joining our junior leagues or getting started in ice hockey, please contact the Junior Delegate.