Hockey player with area ties plays for Team Canada

At World Junior Summer Showcase

A young man with ties to the Kamsack area helped to put Team Canada in the winners’ spotlight.

Braden Schneider, age 17, of Prince Albert, who plays defense for the Brandon Wheat Kings of the Western Hockey League (WHL), just concluded play in the World Junior Summer Showcase.

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In the final game of the tournament which saw the renewed rivalry between Canada and the U.S., Schneider scored a goal for Team Canada, even though the U.S. defeated Canada, 5 to 3, at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, MI.

Schneider’s maternal grandparents are Ernie and Kathy Derworiz of Kamsack. His paternal grandmother is Clarice Hunter of Big River.

In the final game of the tournament which saw the renewed rivalry between Canada and the U.S., Schneider scored a goal for Team Canada, even though the U.S. defeated Canada, 5 to 3, at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, MI.

Schneider’s maternal grandparents are Ernie and Kathy Derworiz of Kamsack. His paternal grandmother is Clarice Hunter of Big River.

The trip to the tournament in Michigan began when Schneider, who just finished his second full year in the WHL, was invited to play with U18 Team Canada in April in a tournament in Sweden, said his mother, Carmela Schneider, in a telephone interview. “He played well in Sweden which led to his getting the invitation to participate in the World Junior Summer Showcase in Michigan this summer, running from July 26 to August 3.”

Carmela, a staff sergeant with the RCMP, works as an Advisory NCO (Non-commissioned Officer) for the North District Management Team, and is based in Prince Albert, responsible for the oversight of 32 RCMP Detachments in the northern half of the province.

Braden began playing hockey at age 4, she said. He is now 17, a graduate of Carlton Comprehensive High School of Prince Albert as of this year, and will be taking a light load of further education classes at the University of Brandon this fall, “to keep his mind working.”

“Both of our sons, Braden and his younger brother Marek, age 16, are avid hockey players,” said Carmela. “Hockey is their life, and that means it has become a way of life for the whole family. We spend a lot of time on the road, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. Both sons have a natural talent and passion for the sport but they also have the drive and determination to want to succeed.”

Braden’s father, Kelly Schneider, an agent for Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation who works with commercial fishermen, and Carmela have become used to the frequent long trips required to be a hockey parent. “The hockey community is made up of a tight-knit group, so we get to know the other parents and socialize with them,” she said. “We cheer on the wins and losses. It’s a very positive experience for the family.”

Braden’s family is proud that he was able to graduate high school with a good average. Being on the road so much, playing games in both Canada and the U.S., meant extra effort taking summer classes. Carmela explained that the WHL has education advisors to keep the players connected to their home schools and focused on education,

Braden will be a top prospect eligible for the 2020 NHL (National Hockey League) Draft next June. “He missed the 2019 draft eligibility cut-off by 5 days because of his birthday,” his mother said. “He is doing very well in the position as defenseman with a knack for penalty kills. His size and strength are his definite assets.

“The commitment to hockey gives Braden, and all of us, a busy life but it is that commitment to a team sport that teaches the players so many life skills. The players have to work hard in order to earn a spot on the team, and what they learn includes leadership, time management, sportsmanship, handling pressure and commitment.

As for the tournament in Plymouth, Braden played in 3 of the 4 games, and of those games Team Canada won two and lost two. While playing with Team Canada he sported No. 7 on his jersey, and while playing with the Wheat Kings, No. 2.

 

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