Junior defensemen Kevin Sigler was noted by Juneau-Douglas High School hockey coaches and local media for his play during last weekend’s series against visiting Delta Junction.
“He’s a kid that has just made huge strides in the off season,” JDHS coach Dave McKenna said. “He is just rapidly improving. He is by no means our best player but he is one of the hardest working and fastest improving.”
Sigler had three assists lastw weekend.
The Crimson Bears are very young on the defensive end this season so improvement and hard work by players over the summer has been crucial for the team.
Every time Sigler takes the ice he works on the little things the coaches tell him to pay attention to.
“I really like how fast and streamlined the sport is,” Sigler said. “It is really a quick sport. It gets pretty physical, compared to some other sports, which is what I like.”
Sigler has been playing for a little over five years. This is his first year on varsity and Delta Junction was his first real test.
“It was a lot of fun,” Sigler said. “I wanted to pace myself and make sure I played well. I just tried my best. I wanted to maintain discipline and follow what our coaches told us in practice.”
Sigler still makes some mistakes on the ice but that is caused by lack of experience. Coaches don’t care too much about the mistakes; they are more concerned with the effort to put things to use in game situations.
“If our whole team approached the game the way he does we would keep improving at a rapid pace,” McKenna said. “All we can ask of these guys is to listen what we have to offer and try to put it in to play in the games.”
JDHS will play East on Thursday and Friday evening. East is traditionally one of the stronger hockey teams from the Anchorage area.
“I am looking forward to them,” Sigler said. “I think playing a good team like that early in the year will help show us what we need to work on so we can improve throughout the year.”
The Crimson Bears need to focus more on what they are doing than what the Thunderbirds will bring to the ice. McKenna noted big improvements from Friday to Saturday night and hopes that continues.
“When you play a higher level team they have more ways to attack you,” McKenna said. “We need to be more alert. That has been our focus. The difference in skill will be instantly obvious from last week. They will have some players that can really put the puck in the net. Every mistake has the potential to really hurt us. We need to focus on defense and keep control of things in our own end.”
Periodically throughout the season players will be recognized for a variety of accomplishments including outstanding play, teamwork, studies or dedication.