The recent GBU18 trip to compete in the IIHF U18 World Championship in Tallinn saw three bronze medals return to Dumfries with the Solway Sharks contingent after GB secured third place in the tournament in Estonia. 3 victories and an overtime win sealed the deal for the youngsters, including Solway Sharks’ Kell Beattie, experiencing his first taste of World Championship competition.
Sharks head coach Martin Grubb was drafted into the GB team as Assistant Coach, joining Sharks’ equipment manager Peam Stenton and defenceman Kell at the Championships.
After narrowly losing out to hosts Estonia in their opening game victories over Romania (in overtime), Korea, Serbia and Lithuania saw GB finish in third place, winning bronze.
GB U18s Head Coach, Sean Easton, said: “It’s not the medal we came for but after two years out, beating the winners and only losing one game is a success on its own. They are a great bunch of guys and with maybe a few more warm-up games the early loss would have been a win. As the tournament went on we got better and better each game.”
Kell is back in action with the Solway Sharks this weekend when they travel to Coventry to take part in the National Finals game against Streatham, in their quest for the remaining trophy on offer this season.
Dumfries player and Junior Sharks stalwart Kyle Carruth was on Great Britain duty with the under 16s men’s team last week, taking part in the Riga Hockey Cup in Latvia. Kyle currently plays for the Junior Sharks U16 and U19 teams, as well as training with the senior Sharks team.
Despite some mixed results the GB youngsters put up a good showing in their first competition, Kyle living up to his reputation by scoring in 3 of GB’s 8 goals over the course of the weekend, making him the team top scorer in the competition.
As well as his success in front of net his hard work in all games was also rewarded, the Great Britain Supporters Club naming him as their player of the tournament.
Sharks Head Coach Martin Grubb commented, “Everyone here at the club is hugely proud of Kyle and his performances with the GB 16’s in Latvia. He deserves the rewards for his hard work, ability and team first attitude and it was really pleasing to see how well he performed on the international stage. He has improved a lot this year and also matured both on and off the ice and it really showed with the way he played in Riga and with his hard work, dedication and support of his family I think this is the start of a big future for him.”