Two Okanagan Hockey Academy alumni will play for their country at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge in Sarnia, Ontario starting November 2nd.
Defenceman Josh Mahura and forward Beck Malenstyn were two of the final 66 players that were named to one of the three Canadian teams taking part.
Mahura, 16, was named to Team Canada White. The St. Albert, Alberta product is currently playing for the Red Deer Rebels in the Western Hockey League where he has appeared in three games this season. Mahura recorded 40 points (14-26-40) in 37 games during the 2013-14 campaign for the OHA Prep team.
Malenstyn, 16, was named to Team Canada Black. The Delta, BC product has three assists in eight career games with the Calgary Hitmen thus far. Malenstyn registered 59 points (33-26-59) in 45 games with the OHA Prep team during the 2013-14 season, a year after posting 119 points (62-57-119) in 57 games with the OHA Bantam Prep team.
This year’s edition of the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge will be vastly different then years past. It will be the first to feature three Canadian national teams: Black, Red and White. From 1986 to 2014, Canada was represented by five regional teams: Atlantic, Ontario, Pacific, Quebec and West.
This year’s edition will also take place in late-October, early-November. In years past the tournament has gone head-to-head with the World Juniors in late-December.
Mahura was drafted in the second round, 36th overall, by the Rebels at the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft, while Malenstyn was selected in the first round, 18th overall, by the Hitmen.
I can confidently say the Okanagan Hockey Academy had an impact on me as a hockey player but more importantly as a person. OHA taught me to bring my best self in all aspects of life including as a student, player and community member. I learned many life skills during my time at OHA that I will take with me much longer than my playing career and that is the greatest gift the staff, coaches, billets and community gave to me. I strongly believe I am a more well-rounded individual because of my time at OHA. I hope any young hockey player with drive, determination and a passion to become a better player and person is able to have the chance to attend somewhere so amazing. For me OHA gave me the best balance of academics, athletics, family and social life. I am extremely grateful for my time at Okanagan Hockey Academy.