The Canadian Junior Hockey League (CJHL) in partnership with Hockey Canada announced today the appointment of the General Managers for Team Canada East and Team Canada West for the fifth annual World Junior A Challenge. Troy Ryan, General Manager of the Halifax Lions (MJAHL), will lead Team East while Team Canada West will be under the direction of Salmon Arm Silverbacks (BCHL) General Manager Rylan Ferster.
The international tournament will feature the best 19 and under Junior A aged players from six competing countries. The World Junior A Challenge tournament will be held in November 2010, the respective dates and location will be announced shortly.
Troy Ryan has served as an Assistant Coach for Team Canada East since the inaugural World Junior A Challenge in 2006. Ryan is honoured and ready for the new challenge of becoming General Manager, “The opportunity to take on a higher role is one I couldn’t pass up on. I feel privileged to have been chosen from amongst my peers and to work with Hockey Canada.”
Ryan is now focused on the next step, which includes hiring the coaching staff which will eventually select the roster for Team Canada East. “The selection process is a huge task, as I need to ensure my staff and I meet and see as many players as possible that will best qualify to represent Canada.”
Rylan Ferster represented Team Canada West as an Assistant Coach in 2008, the Head Coach in 2009, and now takes the reigns as General Manager for the 2010 tournament. Ferster and his staff will scout players at games and showcase events in Canada’s five western leagues (BCHL, AJHL, SJHL, MJHL, SIJHL) enroute to selecting the 2010 roster for Team Canada West.
Ferster is focused on making the most of his opportunity as General Manager, “To represent Canada is a huge honour. I have been a part of the program for a couple of years, and it has been the best hockey experience of my career. Our goal is to win gold; you never win silver!”
Canadian Junior Hockey League Chairman Paul Lake believes the experience of the newly appointed General Managers will continue to improve the success of the program. “The General Managers selected for the 2010 World Junior A Challenge have both advanced through the system, and gained invaluable experience at the international level from their past roles with Team Canada. The ability to have this level of knowledge and continuity will only increase the chance of success for both teams. As we enter the fifth year of the tournament, I feel the program has reached our expectations and met our objective, which is ultimately to showcase our talent on an international stage.”
Canada East will hold evaluation camps for the five leagues that make up Canada East (OJAHL / CCHL, NOJHL, CJHL, LHJAAAQ, MJAHL) and will, like Canada West, scout players at games and showcase events early in the season. Dates and locations of all future evaluation camps will be announced in the summer months.
(Nathan also is a writer for Maineiacs Post to Post and the Maine Hockey Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)