2004 Minor Midgets 2019-2020 Season Reflection
The ‘04 Minor Midgets 2019-2020 season could be characterized by one word: Perseverance
They began the season with a 2 day retreat based at the Gibb Property in August. This was an opportunity for the guys to reunite following their summer of training by enjoying some camping, fishing, and Team-Building exercises. A constant barrage of rain was an early test of the Group’s resolve, as they struggled to keep their tents dry (amongst other things)! The Team also ventured into RBC to take their spots in their new dressing room along with 3 high-paced practices. The short camp integrated the new team members and prepared the boys for the journey ahead.
Following additional practices and exhibition games, the ‘04’s launched into an extremely hectic schedule including: Toronto Titans Tournament, Wendy Dutton London Tournament, Toronto Marlies Christmas Tournament, in addition to two Alliance Showcase weekends kept players, parents, and staff busy. Results throughout the year were mixed, as the team showed glimpses of progress, but was unable to get “over the hump” of consistent, winning ways.
Throughout the busy season, the Team was fortunate to participate in positive activities away from the rink as well: weekly NLPT training sessions, “A Day in The Life Of The OHL” hosted by Owen Sound Attack, and a NCAA Trip to Bowling Green & Miami, Ohio (which included a bus breakdown at the border). These off-ice experiences provided a glimpse into the future for some on the Team who aspire to get to the next level(s) of the hockey world.
Following a mid-season coaching change, the guys focused their attention on their ultimate Team goal of a strong Alliance Playdown to ultimately gain a berth in the OHL Cup in Toronto during March Break. We ended up as the 4th seed in the Alliance and prevailed in a hard fought, 5 game opening series against a tough Windsor Team. Next up was the Alliance #1 seed Elgin Middlesex Chiefs, a Team that went undefeated in the regular season and was ranked consistently amongst the top Minor Midget Teams in Ontario. Huron Perth was considered a major underdog in the lead-up to the series, with few outside of the HPL team giving them a chance to win a single game. HPL & EMC played an epic series, with EMC prevailing in overtime in game 7. Following the emotional loss, the ‘04’s had no time to rest as they immediately started against a well-rested Waterloo Team (Alliance’s #2 Seed). Once again, HPL played in another great series losing to the Wolves 1-0 in the deciding game. With a final birth for the OHL Cup on the line, HPL & Windsor were once agin locked into a series to determine which team would advance to Toronto to the OHL Cup. The COVID crisis put an abrupt end to the series, the season, and for our time together as teammates.
We were very pleased to have 5 players selected in the OHL Priority Entry Draft. Good luck to all the players as they continue on their hockey journey!
The 68 game season had many hurdles, curves and twists in the road but this year has helped them to build lasting friendships and characteristics that will serve them well in years to come: Determination, perseverance and commitment. We asked them at the beginning of the season to “Trust the Process” and they did....