Jr. Sharks’ Adams puts in work, earns ticket to Amherst
It’s hard to imagine that Brian Adams’ first season playing at the AAA level was this past 2015-16 season with the San Jose Jr. Sharks’ 16U team.
The three years prior, he played for the Golden State Elite AA program at the Bantam and 16U levels.
The first weekend in May on his home ice at Sharks Ice in San Jose, Adams participated in the Pacific District Boys Select Camp and the forward turned heads to the tune of being invited to the USA Hockey Select 17 Camp next month in Amherst, N.Y.
“I feel that I performed well that weekend,” said Adams. “I made the right plays and I connected well with my teammates. It is a privilege to play with the top players from all over the country, which means a lot not only for me, but also for my family. They give me all the opportunities to get better and they are with me every step of the way. I have been working hard to get here and I will definitely make the most of it. A lot of players all over the country want to be at the national camp, so I am honored to go.”
Making the jump to AAA hockey last season was an adjustment, but one that Adams said he didn’t tackle alone.
“The speed from AA hockey to AAA hockey is a big jump, so I had to adapt and react to the faster pace,” explained Adams. “Coach Mike Janda helped me improve my game in a big way. He encouraged me to work on new skills each practice. Playing for GSE helped my development in a huge way. I was able to dominate the AA level and that gave me the confidence I needed to make the jump to AAA hockey. I had the pleasure of playing for Larry Cahn for two seasons and he developed me into the player I am now.”
Going into the Pacific District camp, Adams said he didn’t feel any jitters – a tribute to his mental makeup.
“I like to stick to a standard routine, whether it be for a camp or a game,” said Adams. “I prepare the same way no matter how big or small the event is. I approach every time on the ice the same, and that is with the mentality that there is always something on the line.”
Now with his eyes focused on Amherst, Adams sees going there as a win-win situation, in addition to what hockey can provide him along the way.
“My short-term goal is to continue to get stronger in the gym and being in top form to compete at the national camp in June,” Adams said. “My long-term goals are to play hockey at a Division I school and try to pursue a professional career after. Regardless of the outcome, I know that I will come out of hockey a better person while making countless lifelong friends from all over the country. But for now, the sky is the limit.
“The work I have put in both on and off the ice and the high level of coaching I have received in the past couple of years has helped me get to where I am today. When I am playing the game, I am always enjoying myself and having fun. I believe if you aren’t having fun, you will not get any better.”
Pacific District Boys Select Camp
The following players advance to the USA Hockey Select Camps this summer in Amherst, N.Y.
John St. Ivany
NOTE: Defenseman Stanislav Demin was invited to the United States National Team Development Program (NTDP) Tryout Camp and therefore receives a direct invitation to the 2016 USA Hockey National Player Development Camp.
Jerrett Overland (Nevada)
— Matt Mackinder