Five Chilliwack Chiefs named to Canada West camp roster

Powell Connor leads the local crew into a selection camp in Calgary in early December.

It’s been a solid week for Chilliwack Chiefs defenceman Powell Connor.

First, the blueliner had his name appear on the latest Central Scouting Bureau Watch List, which lists draft-eligible prospects who are drawing interest from National Hockey League clubs.

That happened Friday.

On Monday, the Vernon native was invited to a selection camp for the World Junior A Challenge.

The 17 year old is one of 60 players who will travel to Calgary for four days (Dec. 2-5) of practices and games at the Markin MacPhail Centre at the Canada Olympic Park.

Connor will be joined by four of his Chiefs teammates, all of them forwards.

Captain Wil Calverley makes the journey along with Corey Andonovski, Harrison Blaisdell and Skyler Brind’Amour.

Chilliwack is lucky that the players will not miss any games. The camp is sandwiched nicely between Dec. 1 and Dec. 8 games against Coquitlam.

The players who’ve been selected come from the Canadian Junior Hockey League’s five western leagues: the British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL), Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL), Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL), Manitoba Junior Hockey League (MJHL), and Superior International Junior Hockey League (SIJHL).

The BCHL is clearly seen as the superior circuit in that group, supplying nearly half (28) of the camp’s invitees.

Team Canada West’s coaching staff and its director of operations, Kevin Saurette (Winnipeg/MJHL), will use the selection camp to make their final evaluations – with input from the camp’s guest coaches – before naming Team Canada West’s final roster.

“As a group, we are very excited at the depth of talent, character, and work ethic of the 60 players that have been identified for selection camp,” said Saurette. “We look forward to watching these players earn the opportunity to represent Team Canada West at what will be a very competitive selection camp.”

This year’s tournament is being held in Truro, Nova Scotia and features Canada West and Canada East in a six-team field that also includes Russia, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and the United States.

See hockeycanada.ca/en-ca/national-championships/men/world-junior-a/2017

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