There was plenty of fast-paced, competitive action all weekend at Oceanside Place as the Save-On-Foods Oceanside Generals held their main training camp.
With 45 players looking to crack the Generals roster for the upcoming season, players were leaving everything they had out on the ice to try and impress the coaching staff ahead of the 2014–15 season.
“Camp has been good, real good,” Generals head coach Jason Johns said. “These kids are working hard to show that they want to play here and that they belong and that’s what we like to see. The pace on the ice has been good and nobody is giving an inch and that’s the way it should be.”
Among the 45 players looking to crack the roster, there were a few familiar faces to go along with the majority of the new faces on the ice. Forwards Jonah Pearson, Brodie Smith, Carlos Grouchy, Logan Savard, Chase Gaudreault and last season’s captain Travis Flug were on hand. As were defensemen Wyatt Meiers and Chandler Bruyckere.
“It’s been a great camp, things are being run real well,” Grouchy said. “We’ve been doing lots of team bonding exercises, which have been nice. It’s helpful; especially if these are the guys you’re going to be playing with out there on the ice. The more we get to know each other before the season, the better the chemistry can be on the ice.”
Over the three days, there were plenty of chances to get to know one another for the players and coaching staff, with team functions like hot yoga, bowling, a game of football and even taking part in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
“Yeah, that challenge was fun to watch,” goaltender Austin Caktas said. “I didn’t take part in it, but to see coach Johns and the rest of the boys who did, it was great. I wish I would have done it though, looking back at it now, it would have been a good way to cool off outside.”
The team was split up into two groups, allowing for some good, competitive games during the training camp. Three games over three days could be a bit much for some, but it’s a good chance for the players to really get out there and show what they can do.
“Yeah, it’s a good thing having those games over the three days,” forward Sebastian Powsey said. “It gives you a chance to improve on things if you feel like you didn’t really have a good showing and having that second chance can really help. But it’s all about just making the most of the ice time you get out there and showing what you can do. Leaving it all on the ice is the best way to go about it and everyone out here has been working hard to make the team.”
With the regular season around the corner, the Generals kick off exhibition action against the Nanaimo Buccaneers at home on Wednesday, August 27, puck drop 7:30 p.m.