Clearwater hockey player, John Meyer, recently signed with the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League’s 100 Mile House Wranglers, a move he said is going to be a big step in his career on the ice.
“It’s exciting. I’m excited to play a higher level with teammates that are more dedicated,” Meyer said.
“Instead of it being a hobby, it’s pretty much a job and it’s what you’re doing for the full year. There’s a lot more commitment—I’m excited, a little nervous and anxious to just start.”
The move came after Meyer attended a couple of hockey camps, thinking he was going to have to fight his way onto a team, but in the end was scouted by three teams, including ones from Sicamous and Kamloops, with Meyer choosing 100 Mile House in the end.
Meyer went with the Wranglers because they have a good rink, good fans, and the team is hosting the Cyclone Taylor Cup, which he said adds to the appeal of playing for the team.
“(The Cyclone Taylor Cup) is the big tournament at the end of the year. They’re hosting it, so they automatically get in,” said Meyer.
“That’s a pretty big deal for Junior B and it’s really good that a smaller town like 100 Mile has got it.”
The defenseman started hockey when he lived in Mackenize at 8-years-old, playing four years of house league before moving to Clearwater where he played a year of house league in bantam as a peewee with the Ice Hawks.
He’s since played rep and when he was second-year bantam he played with the midget team and then played midget for about four years.
Now Meyer is looking forward to exhibition games with the Wranglers on Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 against the Ridge Meadow Flames of the Pacific Junior Hockey League, with his first league game scheduled a couple of weeks into September.
Dale Hladun, the general manager and head coach of the Wranglers, sang Meyer’s praises, commenting on his skating ability and his importance to the Clearwater Ice Hawks.
“He played a lot of minutes, he was one of their leaders. A lot of their success could be attributed to John,” said Hladun. “He’ll start off his way trying to find his with us but I do think his upside is development. He’s going to really blossom as the season progresses.”