Airdrie native leading the way for Cochrane Generals
By: Lucas Punkari
| Posted: Thursday, Jan 02, 2014 11:58 am
Despite leading the Heritage Junior Hockey League (HJHL) scoring race with 90 points last season, Airdrie native Andrew Bergmann was a man looking in the off-season for a team to play with.
The 21-year-old forward, who stands 6’5” and weighs 220 pounds, did not have a team heading into the 2013-14 campaign after the team he played for during the last two seasons, the Strathmore Wheatland Kings, elected not to play in the HJHL this year.
“The team took a year off to regroup and reorganize things, and as I have a good relationship with the staff there, I understood what they were going through,” Bergmann said. “I wasn’t looking around all that much for a team play for to be honest with you, as I pretty much felt like I was going to play senior men’s hockey in Innisfail.”
“However, I got a call from (Cochrane Generals Head Coach) Evan (McFeeters) during the summer asking me if I wanted to play here, and it’s a decision I’m glad I made.”
With the Generals, Bergmann has continued his scoring touch for his new team, as he is currently in 10th place in league scoring with 34 points in 20 games.
“We felt that Andrew would be a great fit for our team once we found out that he would be available, especially with his age and since he is from Airdrie,” McFeeters said. “When Andrew is on his game, he’s hands down one of if not the best players in this league, as no one can even touch him out there.”
“I have been able to put up points, which is always nice, but I feel that I can be doing better out there,” Bergmann added. “Our team is struggling a little bit right now (the Generals currently have a 9-11-0-3 record), and I want to help us get out of the basement in the Southern Division.”
Bergmann’s scoring touch was on full display during the week of Nov. 25 to Dec. 1, 2013, as he scored six goals and had one assist over the course of two games to earn the HJHL’s player of the week award.
“I had been out of action for a week prior to that with a left-hip injury, so I guess I was anxious to help the team out again,” he said. “More than anything though, I think my linemates Tyson Soloski (of Cochrane) and Patrick Dove (of Canmore) played a key part in my success in those games.”
“Tyson’s a good playmaker and Patrick is just a guy with a ton of speed, and I just try to use my big body to do the rest,” he added.
With his main goal at the moment being to help the Generals move up in the HJHL standings ahead of the playoffs, Bergmann has yet to think about what the next step of his hockey career will be after he ages out of the junior ranks following the conclusion of this campaign.
“It’s really up in the air at this point, and I’m just playing things by ear at this point,” he said.
“If something comes up here soon, that will be great, but if not I will just play for whoever wants me and wherever I end up.”