The Canadian national ice sledge hockey team selection camp got underway tonight in Toronto, Ontario, with the first group starting practice at 6:00 PM local time. The team enters selection camp as reigning Paralympic bronze medalists in a year where Canada is still celebrating the 100 year birthday of ice hockey in Canada. The list of thirty-one players needs to be cut down to fifteen.
Players have been divided into two groups for the camp, a red team and a white team. Red team members include goaltenders Jonathan Derry, Corbin Watson, defensemen Rob Armstrong, Aurelien Bucquet, Robbie Carmichael, James Gemmell, forwards Steve Arsenault, Ben Biermann, Billy Bridges, Chris Cederstrand, Anthony Gale, Antoine Lehoux, Karl Ludwig, Tyler McGregor, and Greg Westlake. White team includes goaltenders Kris Dutiewicz and Dominic Larocque, defensemen Dominic Cozzolino, Adam Dixon, David Grenier and Kevin Sorley, forwards Brendan Blanchard, Kieran Block, Brad Bowden, Ben Delaney, Marc Dorion, Tyrone Henry, Kevin Rempel, Bryan Sholomicki, Mathieu Trudeau, and Derek Whitson.
There is a lot of youth in camp, with a lot of players in their late teens and early twenties. Defenseman and Mississauga, Ontario native Rob Armstrong is the youngest at 18 years old. Ottawa, Ontario forward Ben Delaney is the second youngest at nineteen. Thirty-six year old Kris Dutiewicz is oldest player at camp.
Most of the Sochi Paralympians are in the group, including Watson, Whitson, Dixon, Arsenault, Gemmell, Rempel, Dorion, McGregor, Gale, Delaney, Westlake, Bridges, Ludwig, Larocque and Bowden. Two absences from camp from that team are Benoit St-Armand and Graeme Murray. Both retired from the sport following the Games.