Central Alberta PowerHockey League searching for players

Jacob McGregor has always loved hockey and hopes he can bring his love of PowerHockey to Central Alberta later this fall with a new league. (Contributed photo)

Jacob McGregor’s love for hockey has always run deep.

Like any other Canadian kid, he desperately wanted to skate from a young age.

But, being born with Cerebral Palsy meant he never got that chance.

While he still cheered on the sport quietly from the sidelines, it wasn’t until he turned 12 when he found a way to enjoy the game like his heroes.

McGregor was introduced to PowerHockey in elementary school and the love affair was instant. He’s spent most Saturdays ever since enjoying it.

Now making the move from Calgary to Red Deer, he hopes to jump start a league of his own called the Central Alberta PowerHockey League.

His friend Ryan O’Donoghue is helping him get the campaign off the ground and the duo are intent on starting Sept. 30 at the Penhold Multiplex. He said they’ve already got about 14 players interested but would love to have a few more to make it a four team league.

“We lived together about a year ago and (Jacob) wants to move back to Red Deer. He didn’t want to go without PowerHockey so tried to start it up before he moves up here,” O’Donoghue said.

“We’re trying to get the word out. We only need two teams to play, we’re hoping for four so you aren’t playing the same team every week. That would be 24 players.”

Played with a wiffle ball and floor hockey sticks from an electric wheelchair, players with a range of disabilities are able to participate in the game.

“No other sport compared to it, all the physicality, skill, speed and competitive spirit of ice hockey, played on the gym floor with my wheelchair,” McGregor said.

“It was a place I could strive to win, beat the other players across from me and fulfill that competitive part of myself.”

It’s also an extremely inclusive sport, one that McGregor added people enjoy for a variety of reasons.

“It’s simply a place to make friends, relationships are built on Saturday that last a lifetime between teammates and opponents alike. Most of all, the game is fun,” he said.

The Central Alberta PowerHockey League will host a meet and greet and introduction to the sport on Sept. 30 at 5 p.m. More information can be found on www.caphl.org.

byron.hackett@reddeeradvocate.com

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