Salmon Arm’s Sebastien Archambault is grateful for the opportunity to play Junior A-level hockey this season, and honoured to be playing it with the Humboldt Broncos.
Coming off of two seasons with the Sicamous Eagles, Archambault says he knows there will be more eyes on him joining the Broncos compared to other Junior A teams, but won’t let the added pressure get to him. The 19-year-old defenseman said he is good at keeping composed, and the added attention is just more incentive to be a good representative of the team both on and off the ice.
The Broncos received international attention after the team was involved in an April 2018 bus collision that left 16 people dead, including 10 players, and 13 others injured.
Over the course of the 2018/2019 season, Archambault amassed seven goals and 12 assists, playing a critical role for the Eagles’ defence. He got a call from the Broncos inviting him to their spring camp. Archambault made the 14-hour drive to attend the camp where he said the coaching staff liked the way he played and offered him a spot on the roster.
Archambault said he’d heard about the good reputation of Humboldt, and other small Saskatchewan towns that are home to Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League teams, from acquaintances who have played in the league.
April 6th 2018, the world mourned for a hockey community after a horrific bus crash killed 16 members of the Humboldt Broncos injuring 13 More, A year later our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected, not a day goes by where we dont think of you all #HumboldtStrong 💚💛 pic.twitter.com/Ufyg4CxzJv
— #HumboldtStrong (@HumboldtStrong) April 6, 2019
“I definitely think it will be an unreal environment,” Archambault said. “Like most people from Saskatchewan and small towns, they’re very supportive. And with the tragedy that happened, I think that will only bring people together more and make them more supporting. That’s why I feel it’ll be a great environment.”
Archambault said his objective has always been to play hockey at the highest level possible. He said he tried to get on the Salmon Arm Silverbacks for the past two years, but hasn’t been able to get on a Junior A squad until now. He said the Eagles provided a good opportunity to develop his hockey skills while also staying close to his home in Salmon Arm while finishing school.
With only a few days before his departure for Saskatchewan to join the Broncos’ main camp and get ready for the season, Archambault said he thinks the SJHL will provide tough competition. He added the team’s coaching staff has seemed very good so far.
The Broncos open pre-season play against the Kindersley Klippers on Monday Sept. 2 in Humboldt.