Steelheads recruits scrimmage last Saturday.

Smithers Steelheads prepare to defend championship

The Smithers Steelheads face Terrace in the first test for the defending CIHL champions.

Read the full story in the Sept. 28 edition of The Interior News.

 

By Tom Best

There are already fans in the seats and by all accounts the Steelheads are looking forward to another exciting CIHL season.

One fan, all of four years old, knows the quality on the team.

“My daddy is the best player,” said Rylan Green.

The general atmosphere during Saturday’s practice session was as positive as that youngster.

Steelheads head coach Tom DeVries is starting his fifth year with the program.

“We’ll try to play for fun and good sportsmanship,” he said. “These guys get along very well and feed off of each other. “

Last year, that ambiance led the team to a league championship.

One big component missing from last year: team captain Ian Smith will not be returning this season.

“He’ll be a big loss,” said DeVries. “Besides his playing skills, he brought great leadership skills to the team and he had a great sense of humour,” he added.

The Steelheads begin their campaign in defense of their CIHL title this Saturday night against perennial rivals Terrace River Kings. Game time is 7:30 p.m. at Smithers Civic Centre.