Whitehorse players help Edmonton hockey team to gold

Two 11-year-olds out of the Whitehorse Minor Hockey Association were a driving force for Edmonton's Northern Alberta All-Stars spring team, the XMen, last week in Canmore, Alta.

Two 11-year-olds out of the Whitehorse Minor Hockey Association were a driving force for Edmonton’s Northern Alberta All-Stars spring team, the XMen, last week in Canmore, Alta.

Right wing Dylan Cozens and centre Bryce Anderson helped the XMen team win gold at the Top Guns AAA Tournament.

“When we came into the tournament, I knew we’d at least be in the top-three and we’d have a good chance at winning it,” said Anderson. “The whole team – we’re all good players. There wasn’t any all-star and there wasn’t any terrible player – they were all good players.”

“It was fun,” added Cozens.

The XMen went 3-0-1 in the tournament’s round robin before defeating Edmonton Mercurys 8-2 in the semifinal and Calgary’s Wolf Pack Wings 6-3 in the final.

“It felt really good,” said Anderson. “As soon as we won I felt like part of the team.”

Cozens, who led the tournament in goals and points, was named a tournament All-Star. He scored 13 goals and finished with 22 points.

He was also named a “Top Gun” in a 10-4 win over the Edmonton Mercurys in the round-robin. In the game, Cozens scored four goals and had two assists.

He also scored two goals and had an assist in the 6-3 gold-medal winning game.

“One was an empty-netter,” Cozens pointed out. “The first one I got, it was four-on-four, and I was coming down on a two-on-one. I shot it and it was going five-hole but the saved it – it hit his stick, went up over him, and went into the net.”

Anderson finished the tournament with two goals and six assists for seventh overall in points. He was also named a “Top Gun” in a tournament game.

Anderson let his presence known early on, scoring the XMen’s second goal of the tournament in an 8-1 win over Foothills South Falcons. Cozens scored two goals and got an assist in the game’s third period.

“I like playing peewee a lot, but it was good playing a tournament in my own age group,” said Anderson.

Both Yukoners played up an age group on the Whitehorse Peewee A Mustangs rep team this past season. Anderson’s father Blaine feels playing in an older age group really improved their skills, as did the hard-driving Mustangs coach Jake Jirousek.

“That was a huge part of it,” said Blaine. “The number-one reason was their coaching this year – Jake Jirousek. He was instrumental in their development.”

“He gave us hard drills to do so it made us better,” said Cozens.

“He pushes you hard, no matter what your skill level is,” said Bryce.

The Peewee A Mustangs captured silver at the Fort St. John Flyers Peewee Tier 2 Tournament in Fort St. John, B.C., in November.

“It was a little bit different (playing on the Xmen) because me and Bryce played on the same line all year and we had different systems and stuff,” said Cozens.

The two Mustangs ended up playing with Edmonton after Blaine saw a website that said the XMen team was looking for two spring players. The two Whitehorse players went down to Edmonton, practiced with the team and played an exhibition game, before getting picked up.

They then traveled with the XMen to play at the B.C. Challenge Cup over the May long weekend in Burnaby, B.C. The team took fourth after losing to the eventual gold-medal winning team in the semifinal.

Contact Tom Patrick at


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Whitehorse and Carcross will be among seven northern communities to have unlimited internet options beginning Dec. 1. (Yukon News file)
Unlimited internet for some available Dec. 1

Whitehorse and Carcross will be among seven northern communities to have unlimited… Continue reading

Willow Brewster, a paramedic helping in the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre, holds a swab used for the COVID-19 test moments before conducting a test with it on Nov. 24. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
An inside look at the COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre

As the active COVID-19 case count grew last week, so too did… Continue reading

Conservation officers search for a black bear in the Riverdale area in Whitehorse on Sept. 17. The Department of Environment intends to purchase 20 semi-automatic AR-10 rifles, despite the inclusion of the weapons in a recently released ban introduced by the federal government, for peace officers, such as conservation officers. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Environment Minister defends purchase of AR-10 rifles for conservation officers

The federal list of banned firearms includes an exception for peace officers

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: The K-shaped economic recovery and what Yukoners can do about it

It looks like COVID-19 will play the role of Grinch this holiday… Continue reading

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Colin McDowell, the director of land management for the Yukon government, pulls lottery tickets at random during a Whistle Bend property lottery in Whitehorse on Sept. 9, 2019. A large amount of lots are becoming available via lottery in Whistle Bend as the neighbourhood enters phase five of development. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Lottery for more than 250 new Whistle Bend lots planned for January 2021

Eight commercial lots are being tendered in additional to residential plots

The Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse on Aug. 21. The Canada Border Services Agency announced Nov. 26 that they have laid charges against six people, including one Government of Yukon employee, connected to immigration fraud that involved forged Yukon government documents. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Charges laid in immigration fraud scheme, warrant out for former Yukon government employee

Permanent residency applications were submitted with fake Yukon government documents

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Karen Wenkebach has been appointed as a judge for the Yukon Supreme Court. (Yukon News file)
New justice appointed

Karen Wenckebach has been appointed as a judge for the Supreme Court… Continue reading

Catherine Constable, the city’s manager of legislative services, speaks at a council and senior management (CASM) meeting about CASM policy in Whitehorse on June 13, 2019. Constable highlighted research showing many municipalities require a lengthy notice period before a delegate can be added to the agenda of a council meeting. Under the current Whitehorse procedures bylaw, residents wanting to register as delegates are asked to do so by 11 a.m. on the Friday ahead of the council meeting. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Changes continue to be contemplated for procedures bylaw

Registration deadline may be altered for delegates

Cody Pederson of the CA Storm walks around LJ’s Sabres player Clay Plume during the ‘A’ division final of the 2019 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament. The 2021 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament, scheduled for March 25 to 28 in Whitehorse next year, was officially cancelled on Nov. 24 in a press release from organizers. (John Hopkins-Hill/Yukon News file)
2021 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament cancelled

The 2021 Yukon Native Hockey Tournament, scheduled for March 25 to 28… Continue reading

Lev Dolgachov/123rf
The Yukon’s Information and Privacy Commissioner stressed the need to safeguard personal information while shopping this holiday season in a press release on Nov. 24.
Information and Privacy Commissioner issues reminder about shopping

The Yukon’s Information and Privacy Commissioner Diane McLeod-McKay stressed the need to… Continue reading

Most Read