TULSA, OK – The Tulsa Junior Oilers opened training camp on Monday morning and practiced as a team for the first time.
Head Coach Zac Desjardins directed drills during a two-hour session which included many members of the Tulsa Oilers squad including goalie Ian Keserich, defenseman Sean Erickson and forwards Ryan Cramer and Michel Beausoleil.
“It was good to finally get out there and I think it was a pretty typical first day,” remarked Desjardins. “Some of the guys are still getting into skating shape. The fast pace out there might have been a little rough on some of them, but they’ll get used to it as the week goes on.”
The Junior Oilers have four weeks until they open the WSHL season on the road against the Dallas Ice Jets.
“Early on in camp my goals are just to figure out where we’re at as a team, to get the players comfortable with me, and to get my message across,” Desjardins said. “Today, my expectations were actually exceeded. I can already see that our guys have a good connection with each other and the level of competition out there was very high.”
Training camp will continue throughout the week with practices from 9-11 a.m. each day and two sessions on Friday from 10-11:15 a.m. and 1:45-3:00 p.m.
Through this first week, Desjardins will stress the fundamentals and says he glad to have the “senior” Oilers there to give the young players and extra measure of guidance.
“I think having those guys on the ice really help to push the junior kids,” said Desjardins. “They challenged the kids to be better, to focus, and to concentrate. It’s only going to make us better and it’s a thrill for the kids to be able to skate with such accomplished hockey players.”
Tickets are on sale now for the Junior Oilers home opener on October 12th against the Texas Junior Brahmas at the Oilers Ice Center. General admission tickets for the Junior Oilers are $10 for adults and $7 for kids ages five and under. For more information call 918-632-PUCK.