Two Prince Albert hockey playing youngsters, forward Ashton Tait and goalie Jayden Kraus, were involved in a historic achievement in Saskatchewan hockey history last week.
At the North American Hockey Showcase in Bloomington, Minn., June 27 to July 1 featuring the top 2006-born players in the continent, Team Saskatchewan finished as runner-ups in the Canadian Finals. They lost in the finals to Ontario 9-6, after posting a 6-2 record to get there.
According to Ashton’s father Jordan Tait, that’s the best Team Sask has finished in the tournament.
“I think just for P.A. minor hockey and the city of P.A., it is a big accomplishment to have two kids play at that tournament, at that calibre of hockey,” Jordan said. “Saskatchewan has never placed at that tournament, this is the best showing they’ve had. It was a really great experience to see the talent that’s out there. I was very proud anyway as a dad to be there at that atmosphere, to see [Ashton] play at that high level.”
Both P.A. products played big parts in the tournament.
Ashton Tait scored three goals and six points in nine tournaments. Kraus shared the duties in goal, while battling through injuries throughout the tournament.
“It’s a step above. It’s that elite group where the pace is much faster, quick decisions, it definitely was the elite calibre,” Jordan said. “They both more than deserved to be there.”
To get on Team Sask in the first place, the players had a few skates in front of the evaluation staff, before the team was chosen during the season. Jordan said he got the call that Ashton was selected back in February.
“I know for us, we were very proud just to be selected in that group,” Jordan said. “I look at how many 10-year-old kids are in Saskatchewan playing hockey. Just to be in the top-nine forwards, top-two goaltenders and to play the best kids in North America, it was a very big accomplishment. For us as parents, we are very proud. All friends and family were tuning in at home.”
On Twitter: @jeff_paNOW
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