Photo Credit: Neil Browne Photography
With the introduction of the OHL Under-18 Priority Selection two years ago, the focus on the talent level in Midget hockey began to be highlighted even more. There are plenty of success stories from this age group of those who have moved on to the next level of hockey while others continue to play for the love of the game.
One of the key focuses on the Midget year is how it gives players extra time to grow physically and increases their time on the ice to develop their skills. Some players will get an opportunity that they may not have been ready for in previous years and end up thriving in the new environment.
With options for playing increasing once players hit their Midget year, sometimes it’s best not to look too far for an opportunity. There are a number of Minor Midget players who return home to play Midget hockey after their training camps with OHL teams.
The new OHL Under-18 Priority Selection is the perfect chance to see just how much players have improved over the one season. Players like Markham’s Jonathan Yantsis, who is entering his third season with the Kitchener Rangers, and Oakville’s Emmett Serensits, now in his second season with the Sudbury Wolves are two players who were plucked out of Midget hockey and are now playing at the next level.
As the game moves towards a faster pace, the emphasis on the size of a player has been decreased. The focus on skill development allows for players of all make ups to be given a chance. Some players simply need an extra year to become stronger and more mature.
The Midget AAA season kicks off this weekend with the Clarington Toros taking on the Kingston Jr. Frontenacs. The Ajax-Pickering Raiders look to defend their Midget AAA championship with another strong season.
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