Saskatchewan kids will soon have the chance to develop their hockey game and further their hockey career while focusing on academics.
Prairie Hockey Academy (PHA) is joining forces with Hockey Canada, Saskatchewan Hockey Association (SHA), and Caronport High School (CHS) to create the province’s first Hockey Canada Sports School.
The new hockey academy begins this fall in Caronport.
PHA student-athletes will enroll in a three semester program that allows them to complete all required classes plus a number of elected courses each year. In addition, the PHA is required to provide 75 minutes of on ice training and 75 minutes of off ice training each day. The evenings are left open for student life and homework.
The PHA begins with two teams; Bantam Prep and Midget Prep. Additional teams could be added within a year.
Justin Simpkins, President of the PHA, said their two teams will compete against other academy teams in Canada.
“Our games are primarily on weekends at large showcase events, so the exposure the young athletes might receive from scouting at events like that and playing against some of the top athletes in Canada.”
Simpkins explained the PHA is modeled from the wildly successful Okanagan Hockey Academy (OHA), which in 2002 became the first hockey specific sport school recognized by Hockey Canada. The OHA now has four branches including one in Penticton, Edmonton, Europe and the UK.
“[PHA] is basically founded on similar principles, it is run the exact same way as far as the teams go and Okanagan Hockey Academy will be the team that we’ll compete against.”
Those hoping to join the Prairie Hockey Academy will need to apply. The PHA will be holding midget showcase camps from April 22-23 and bantam showcase camps from May 5-6 where players have the chance to prove why they belong with the academy.
For more information about the school and what it stands for, visit Prairie Hockey Academy’s website.