Today's "C" Player ... Tomorrow's State Champion

Eden Prairie High School won its first state high school hockey championship in 2009. It did so with one of the youngest teams in state tournament history, including 10 sophomores and a team average GPA of over 3.7. Many times both players and parents think the roster of this type of championship team were always the “A” players leading up to their varsity year. Below are some interesting statistics about the 2009 championship team.

This information should encourage both players and parents to realize just how much personal effort and hard work play a role during development. Remember, kids are all unique and develop at different speeds and at different times in their hockey career. Consider the history of the 20 players on the 2009 Eden Prairie varsity team and where they played at each level in youth hockey.

One player never played on an “A” team from Squirts through Bantams.

As first-year Bantams, nine players made the “A” team, 10 were Bantam “B1” and one was Bantam “B2”.

As first-year PeeWees, seven players were PeeWee “A,” 11 were PeeWee “B1,” one was PeeWee “B2” and one was a PeeWee “C” player.

The Squirt level is even more interesting. As second-year Squirts, 14 were Squirt “A” and six were Squirt “B.” As first-year Squirts, seven were Squirt “A,” 11 were Squirt B” and two were Squirt “C.”

Note that these lower level players varied from year to year, and were not just one kid.

The point is, some kids start out on an “A” team and over time, for whatever reason, do not make the varsity team. While other kids start at “B” or “C” level, find a passion for the game of hockey, work hard and in some cases get to play on a state championship team!

The best lesson to learn from the 2009 Eden Prairie High School varsity team is keep working hard! If you enjoy the game of hockey, do not write yourself off when you are not on the “A” team in your younger years. If you are a parent, be supportive, and you may be surprised at what can be accomplished when you support your child and their dreams.

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