Aaron Kasper goes after a puck in front of the Victoria Cougars bench on Sept. 17.

Sooke hockey player Aaron Kasper tries out for Victoria Grizzlies

Sooke hockey player Aaron Kasper recently had an up-close-and-personal grizzly encounter.

Sooke hockey player Aaron Kasper recently had an up-close-and-personal grizzly encounter.

Kasper, a former Westshore Stinger, trained with the Victoria Grizzlies at their Bear Mountain Arena main camp  right before the start of the season, and said it was unlike anything he’s experienced.

“Playing at that level it was a lot faster than I was used to, but it was good,” said the 18-year-old defenceman, who is playing for the Kerry Park junior B team in Cowichan Valley this year.

He said normally players are only invited to the main camp by first going through a prospects and then a juniors camp, but Kasper’s coach Brad Scafe had contacts with the Grizzlies who said they were in need of D men this year.

“There were five or six kids from my team there, our goalie made it pretty far,” said Kasper.

The camp was a tournament style with a playoff, with winners having a chance to place somewhere on the Grizzlies’ roster. Kasper’s team placed third.

An EMCS graduate, he was also a product of their hockey program that Kasper said was excellent. It primed him for hockey past the high school level like when he joined the Stingers in 2010, which he said “wasn’t really a winning team.” That is not an exaggeration — in the half season that he played for them, they recorded only one win against Campbell River.

Disillusioned, Kasper decided to step down a level and played for Sooke midget A hockey the latter half of the season, and ended up capturing silver with the club. After that, he had attended camps for a few junior B teams around the southern Island such as the Victoria Cougars and the Saanich Braves and decided on the Kerry Park Islanders.

“Our team is looking really, really good this year,” said Kasper. “The coaching is outstanding, and it’s a way better environment.”

This year his goal is to get back into the swing of higher-tier hockey and work on fundamentals to prepare him for a jump to junior A. Eventually, he even wants to take his skills abroad.

“I know a guy who just went to Amsterdam and played in Europe — I kind of want to do that because they have good leagues over there.”

 

Just Posted

Victoria wins crucial WHL contest over Giants in Langley

Royals take over second in B.C. Division ahead of Vancouver

Man hospitalized after early morning Sooke Road crash

Police say injuries are non life-threatening

Premier John Horgan announces improvements to Highway 14

Construction on the $10 million project is set to begin immediately

LETTERS: Sooke preschool celebrates 30th anniversary

Kingfisher Preschool to hold anniversary event May 26

WATCH: Giant waves smash Ucluelet’s Amphitrite Point

Folks made their way to Ucluelet’s Amphitrite Point Lighthouse on Thursday, Jan.… Continue reading

World’s fastest log car made in B.C. sells for $350,000 US

Cedar Rocket auctioned off three times at Barrett-Jackson Co., netting $350,000 US for veterans

Bad timing: Shutdown spoils Trump’s one-year festivities

Trump spends day trying to hash out a deal with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

RCMP nail sex toy thief

Shop owner plays a role in arrest

Ice-cream-eating bear draws controversy

An Alberta Wildlife Park posted a video this week of one of their bears going through a Dairy Queen drive-through

LETTER: The sewage spiral continues in Greater Victoria

My left brain has been trying to digest the news and comments… Continue reading

Fernie, RCMP go to court over city log books in fatal ammonia leak probe

Log books center stage in clashing of investigations between the city and RCMP

Renowned Comox Valley sasquatch researcher passes away

A renowned biologist and leading Canadian sasquatch researcher who called the Comox… Continue reading

B.C.’s biggest pot plant planned for Oliver

Co-founder Tony Holler said the 700,000 sq. ft. facility would produce 100,000 kg of pot per year

Most Read