Owen Shier is willing to put in the work required to make his hockey dreams a reality.
The 16-year-old Sunderland resident was drafted by the Windsor Spitfires in the eighth round (159th overall) during Saturday’s (April 7) OHL draft.
“I got calls from a few different teams before the draft, so I wasn’t really sure where I was going to go,” he said.
“I’m excited to be going to Windsor. As soon as my name got called (at the draft), the phone rang and they welcomed me to the team.”
He’s off to an orientation session with the club on April 21, followed by a rookie camp in June and training camp in August.
Shier knows that earning a spot on the Spitfires’ roster is going to take a lot of hard work.
“I’m going to be working out and skating all summer – I’m hoping to crack the lineup,” he said.
At six-feet in height and 179 pounds, Shier is described as a “solid two-defenceman” in a pre-draft scouting release on the Ontario Minor Hockey Association website.
“Possessing size and mobility, he’s a smart player and makes few mistakes. He is strong on the puck and employs a sound physical game. The backbone of his team, Shier was called on to log a lot quality minutes down the stretch,” it reads.
Shier started playing hockey in his hometown, winning a Tyke Three-County championship as well as OMHA and International Silver Stick titles.
He credits coaches Kevin Bagshaw and Trevor Merrick for helping him develop his game with Sunderland, as well as Nathan Oke and Scott Roach when he moved on to play with the Central Ontario Wolves.
Shier has been with the club for the past seven seasons, serving as team captain during the 2017/18 campaign. He scored six goals and tallied 15 assists in 36 regular season games, adding four points in a six-game playoff series.
“I really want to thank all my family and friends for their support over the years,” he said, also noting that CBM Sunderland has been a longtime sponsor.