Terrace’s Brendan and Jeff Kennedy have chosen the Salmon Arm SilverBacks as their Junior A hockey destination for next season.
The brothers currently play on the Midget AAAA team at the Okanagan Hockey Academy (OHA), which is a part of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League.
They recently travelled to Salmon Arm for a weekend at the start of March to meet players, coaches, tour facilities and practice with the team.
Both liked what they saw, and while official contracts won’t be signed until June, the commitment to play has been made by the players as well as the SilverBacks.
“We have committed roster spots to them, so they certainly will be SilverBacks,” said Tim Kehler, general manager and head coach for the team.
“For us, it was about going somewhere we were comfortable, and somewhere we could have success,” said Jeff, who adds they were treated very well by the coaches and current SilverBack players.
Brendan said the decision to go to Salmon Arm had a lot of factors, but location was definitely high on the
“We wanted to live in the Interior,” he said. “It’s closer to home.”
Brendan also said after talking over day-to-day routines with current players on the team, there were a lot of similarities to their present schedule at OHA in Penticton, and that size-wise Salmon Arm is similar to Terrace.
Kehler is very happy with the twins’ decision to come to Salmon Arm.
“We are just thrilled that they are going to make Salmon Arm their home for their BC hockey league careers,” Kehler said.
We are adding two good hockey players, two quality kids and people who we think will be a real benefit to our community for their junior careers, he continued.
According to Kehler, while Brendan and Jeff play different positions on the ice, they embody a lot of the same attributes as players.
“They’re both physically strong kids for their age, they both skate well, and pursue the puck well,” Kehler said, adding that as captain and assistant captain respectively for their current team, they think both players possess tremendous leadership qualities and see them as being future pillars in the SilverBacks program.
This news comes at the same time as another Terrace local, Luke Gordon, has signed with the Western Hockey League’s Calgary Hitmen.
All three players are graduates of Terrace Minor Hockey and grew up playing hockey together.
“Jeff and Luke played on the same line for five years,” Brendan said, adding the three of them owe a lot of their success to each other, as well as their parents and the Terrace Minor Hockey Association.