Vanderhoof minor hockey wrapped up the year with awards ceremonies and a banquet on April 13.
Brandon Davidson took home the Jim Eadie Memorial Award for most improved under-11 player. Quentin Corbiere won top defense and Taylor Danielson won top forward.
The Steven Dedish Award for dedication and perseverance went to Evan Eadie. Connor Schlamp won the Dave Poot goalie award and Grayson Turgeon took home the Barry Rysz goalie award
Vanderhoof Minor Hockey Association President David Simoes gave an emotional speech thanking players, their parents and coaches for being involved in making a great season happen.
“Our game is so beautiful. Hockey is beautiful; It’s forgiving. You can make a mistake and then you can go out and score a big goal,” Simoes said.
“[You feel] the crushing defeat of losing a game, only to have your teammates hug you after — knowing that they’re feeling the exact same way you’re feeling.”
He talked about how the sport builds friendships at home in Vanderhoof and links up the communities of Fort St. James and Fraser Lake with shared memories.
For Simoes, Hockey is about ‘loose pucks and ice bags’ as much as it’s about growth, both as players and as people.
“It’s honouring everyone who has put their skates on, past present and future.”