The Penticton Vees Junior ‘A’ Hockey Club announced Grant Cruikshank has committed to play for the Colorado College Tigers, after his 2017-18 season was cut short due to injury.
“Grant was an incredible addition to our program here in Penticton,” said Vees head coach and general manager Fred Harbinson. “It’s unfortunate his season was cut short this year, but we’re very happy to see him land with a great program in the Tigers to continue his hockey career and receive an education.”
Cruikshank suffered an ankle injury during a victory over the Kelowna Warriors in December. He required surgery and was forced to end his season early.
“For everybody in town that wants to know how we are going to replace him, well, there is no way you replace that kid. He is one of the fastest, if not the fastest player in the league. He started off with an injury this year and was just starting to come into his own. You are not going to find a player this year that can replace him,” Harbinson told the Western News shortly after Cruikshank was injured.
The 1998-born forward played a key role in the Fred Page Cup championship run last season, scoring six goals and six assists in all 21 playoff games. His largest contribution came in the league final against Chilliwack as he scored three goals and four assists in the seven games. For his efforts last season, Cruikshank was named to the BCHL’s All-Rookie team.
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The Tigers 2017-18 roster has nine former BCHL players, but Cruikshank becomes the first player during Harbinson’s tenure with the Vees to commit.