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Wild Academy Juniors Selected For Showcase


10 junior players from the Wild Academy have been selected to take part in the prestigious Showcase event in Sheffield over the Coronation Weekend of 5th to 8th May.


The annual tournament – which used to be known as Conference Weekend - brings together the top young players from across the country to play in composite teams against others in their own age groups – with teams at U12, U13, U14, U15 and U18 levels, and a separate event for Under 15 girls.


The team have previously been drawn up along regional lines but a new format this season sees players being selected into draft teams, led by experienced coaches from junior and senior hockey, showcasing the next generation of talent in English ice hockey.


Sophia Green, who has been playing senior hockey for the Wild women’s team this season, has been selected for the U15 Girls team, while Aidan Lamb, Jared Knowles and Reece O’Brien have been selected in the Boys’ U15 draft.


Toryn Christy has been picked for the U14 team, Ant Norman for the U13s, while Jacob Foster, Leighton Williams, Herbie Rolt and Evan Walker – who were all part of the Academy Under 12 team that won their league this season – have all been selected to play in the Under 12 teams.


Wild senior player Rhys Edwards, who has had a superb season in the NIHL Moralee Division, despite still being only 16 - and who has played at all Conference age levels in the past - has been drafted into the Showcase Under 18 team.


Showcase organiser Ben Pitchley said of the new draft format:


“Our aim is that the teams are evenly balanced so that all games are competitive, and that no player who has earnt the opportunity misses the chance to show what they can do.


“As well as being a fun weekend of great hockey, the purpose of a Showcase is to demonstrate the talent on offer both on and off the ice. Speaking to coaches around the game at all levels, they are really excited and after the last few years that is really important.”


“We’re involving NIHL and Elite League personnel so that they can effectively scout all the top prospects coming through at U16 and U18 in one place. Building their excitement about and investment in young British players is the best way to develop the pathway that takes a talented 14 or 15-year-old all the way through to senior level.”


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