MISSISSAUGA- Through one month of OHL Hockey, the Mississauga Steelheads have found their most consistent scorer. Right-winger and captain Cole Carter have provided stellar offensive prowess through 19 games for the Steelheads. He leads Mississauga in game-winning goals with three, including two against their divisional rival, the Niagara IceDogs. On Sunday against the Kingston Frontenacs, Carter dangled his away past defenders to get his 16th goal of the season, en route to a 5-2 Steelheads win. Carter leading the Steelheads in scoring (16 goals, 6 assists, 22 points) impresses Mississauga coach James Richmond, who constantly relies on the captain’s line to generate scoring opportunities.
“I think there is untapped offensive capabilities with Cole,” said Richmond. “He has really bought into playing in front of the other team’s net, using his hockey sense to create plays and scoring chances for himself.”
Cole Carter’s Journey to OHL a Testament to Hard Work and Perseverance
Every hockey player’s journey to the OHL is different and unique. For Cole Carter, he was overlooked by all the OHL teams in the 2014 Priority Draft. While he possessed tremendous speed, his lack of size was a sign of concern for OHL organizations.
“After not getting drafted last year, I didn’t think anything would happen this year,” the 16-year-old Carter had said.
Leading up to the 2015 Priority Draft, the young forward underwent a growth spurt. From 5-foot-4 to 5-foot-9, Carter possessed an adequate hockey size to be a stellar junior player. The Windsor Spitfires saw his potential and drafted the forward in the fourth round. For Carter, the hard work had finally paid off and his ability to never give up has made him a pivotal part of any team.
“I know a lot of my buddies went through the same thing I did and don’t care anymore, but I used it as motivation,” Carter said.
Carter Embracing Captain Role for Steelheads
Before coming to the Steelheads, Cole Carter played for the Windsor Spitfires and the Kitchener Rangers. In his first OHL season, Carter established himself as a forward with a great vision for the ice, illustrated with 28 assists on the season. His high hockey IQ and speed allow him to create scoring opportunities and find teammates with good looks to score.
The Mississauga Steelheads saw these skills in Carter and acquired the right-winger in a trade last season with the Kitchener Rangers. Immediately, the young forward made an impact on the Steelheads, generating 15 goals and 8 assists in 28 games played. In the playoffs, Carter dazzled scouts and coaching staff alike, scoring three goals and recording two assists in six games played. Given Carter’s evident leadership qualities and his ability to galvanize the team, it was no surprise that Coach Richmond made him the Mississauga captain this season.
“Cole was our obvious choice as the captain for this year’s team. He is a young man with a tremendous amount of character. Cole is well respected by his teammates and coaches because of his work ethic and attention to detail every day he comes to the rink,” stated Richmond.
Already this season, Carter is on pace to surpass his scoring total from last season. But for the captain, getting better every day is his number one priority. As captain, his role is to not only be the star on the ice but to bring his team together to work towards the common goal of winning hockey games.
“I’m trying to tell them to be confident. There’s no need not to be,” Carter said. “We’re trying to create a real positive atmosphere and I think that’s why the young guys are really bringing it.”
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