Three hours after being introduced as the new coach of the Prince George Spruce Kings, Chad van Diemen was on the ice at the Coliseum.
Van Diemen ran practice sessions Friday afternoon for the six teams of players participating in this year’s Prospects Camp.
“(General manager) Mike (Hawes) had sent me a schedule for the camp,” van Diemen said Monday, after the camp was over, “and the rosters for the teams.
“I knew some of the players from our work with them, and I recognized some of the names off Midget teams we had seen or scouted.
“A lot of the players from up north, especially from some of the smaller communities, I didn’t know.”
Hawes said the camp continues to grow, and is proving to be quite productive for the Spruce Kings.
“It’s getting better and better. These kids want to attend, and we want to put on a good show for them and their parents while they’re here.”
While many of the players in the Sunday afternoon Top Prospects Game were from B.C., there were other areas represented, including California, the Northwest Territories and Colorado.
“We spend all winter talking to players every chance we get, telling them about Prince George, about the Spruce Kings, and you can see by this weekend that word is getting around.
“The kids and their parents are here because they want to play for the Spruce Kings.”
Four of those players have committed to the Spruce Kings for the upcoming season, and all four are from the B.C. Major Midget League.
Forwards Parker Colley and Kyle Johnson and goalie Liam McCloskey all played for the league champion Vancouver Northeast Chiefs, while firward Nic Ponak played for the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds.
All four of the players will be back in Prince George for the main training camp in August.