A pair of OMHA grads from the Quinte area were recognized by the Ontario Hockey League for their excellence in the classroom.
Owen Beck (Mississauga Steelheads) received the Bobby Smith Trophy awarded to the OHL’s Scholastic Player of the Year while Cal Uens (Owen Sound Attack) was named the Ivan Tenant Memorial Award Winner as the top academic high-school student.
Their years in minor hockey prepared them for what it would take to balance the effort needed to find success on the ice and in their studies.
“Being in high school, when I started playing for Quinte, things got a little bit busier in terms of my homework and then the drive to practice and games. The biggest thing was definitely time management,” said Beck. “Learning that skill helped me in Quinte and it’s helped me even more playing in the OHL now. Making sure I know when I have time to get my assignments done, get my homework done and still be able to be on the ice and do workouts every day.”
Completing schoolwork ahead of time is something that Uens has found benefits in.
“I think a big part of it is making sure you get all your school work done before you even head to the rink. That way your mind is clear so you can focus on hockey,” said Uens. “I really just try to get it done and out of the way with so I don’t need to bring any of those thoughts into the locker room.”
Uens achieved a 98.7% average in his studies, excelling in Business Leadership (100%), a pair of English courses (98%, 99%) and Challenge and Change in Society (98%). He earned enough credits to graduate Grade 12 a year early, enabling him to begin taking University courses next season.
Beck’s course load included Advanced Functions (96%), University Chemistry (93%), Kinesiology (94%), Calculus (91%) and University Biology (93%), resulting in an overall average of over 93% in his Grade 12 year.
“I’ve always been better at math and science than I have at English and social sciences. That’s kind of what drew me towards (those courses),” said Beck. “As a high level athlete I always like keeping things interesting and challenging myself in everything I do. I guess it kind of made sense in a way to be taking those courses.”
Uens found similarities between his approach in training and studying.
“The more you put into it, the more you get out of it. The more you train, the better player you’re going to be, the more prepared you’re going to be, the better you’re going to perform. I think it’s kind of the same thing in school – the more you prepare yourself the better you’re going to perform on tests.”
Other OMHA grads to be named to the 2021-22 OHL Scholastic Team include (OMHA/OHL team): Nolan Lalonde (Kingston/Erie), Matthew Poitras (Whitby/Guelph), Jacob LeBlanc (Southern Tier/Kitchener), Tnias Mathurin (Ajax-Pickering/North Bay), Calum Ritchie (Oakville/Oshawa), Sam Alfano (Niagara North/Peterborough), and Ethan Miedema (Quinte/Windsor).
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