Updated: Valley junior A Wildcats begin camp, hold fan meet-and-greet

John Decoste jdecoste@kingscountynews.ca
Published on August 22, 2014

The Summit Hyundai Valley junior A Wildcats kicked off their 2014 training camp Friday, Aug. 22 in their new Berwick home. 

Registration took place at 4 p.m. at the Kings Mutual Century Centre, followed by a meet-and-greet barbecue in Berwick for all Wildcats’ fans.

The junior Wildcats will hold an inter-squad scrimmage Aug. 23 at 7 p.m. - part of a Wildcats’ organization triple-header. The CIBC Wood Gundy midget AAA Wildcats take on Halifax at 2 p.m. and the Kings Mutual major bantams follow at 5.

For the midget Wildcats, this will be their first action of the pre-season. The team changed sponsorship earlier this month from Summit Hyundai to CIBC Wood Gundy. The midgets and bantams both began their training camps Aug. 16.

Valley’s junior A squad will open their pre-season Aug. 29 and 30 with a pair of 7 p.m. starts. The defending MHL champion Truro Bearcats will provide the opposition in both games.

In other news from the Wildcats’ program, the midgets announced Aug. 12 that Jeff O’Flaherty, formerly of the Sackville bantam AA Flyers, had joined the coaching staff as an assistant to head coach T.J. Smith. O’Flaherty and Smith worked side by side at the Hockey Nova Scotia High Performance camp this past spring and summer.

O’Flaherty, a chiropractor by day, had applied for the Wildcats’ head coaching job back in the spring, “and in talking to him,” Smith said in a release on the team website, “he has decided to come on as assistant coach.

“I got to see Jeff first-hand in Antigonish with the High Performance program, and what stuck out was his relationship with the players and his passion for the game.”

O’Flaherty had a 113-21-16 coaching record over the past two seasons, including a provincial title and a 41-game unbeaten streak. He brings knowledge, a passion for the game and a positive attitude to the rink, game in and game out, which is something he takes pride in passing along to his players.