‘Once In A Lifetime Feeling’ To Be Drafted, Says Spence

The OHL Draft can be a stressful time for a 16-year-old teenager. Young players have worked hard to play at a higher level, and then comes the wait. Watching names being selected, seeing the social media reaction, and waiting for your name to be called.

For Chatham’s Craig Spence, he went through those stressful and emotional hours, but when he finally heard his named called in the 2018 OHL Draft by the Mississauga Steelheads, it was a feeling he won’t soon forget.

“I was feeling a little bit nervous during the draft, but when I heard my name called it was a once in a lifetime feeling,” explained Spence.

The Chatham-Kent Cyclones right-shot blueliner was selected in the 7th round, 128th overall by the Mississauga Steelheads, an organization he is happy to now be a part of.

“I was very pleased to be drafted to the Steelheads, they are a great organization,” said Spence, who also saw action with the Junior B Chatham Maroons this season.

The Mississauga Steelheads have had multiple local connections in recent seasons including Chatham’s Brendan Harrogate and Thamesville’s Trent Fox. Harrogate finished his season with the Oshawa Generals, the team Craig Spence’s older brother Grant Spence was drafted by two years ago, but Fox finished out his OHL career with Mississauga. Spence and Fox are not strangers, as they cross paths during the offseason on and off the ice, training with Athletes Fuel Strength & Conditioning in Chatham.

With his season over, Spence’s focus has turned to adding to his 6’1″ frame, and getting ready for his first OHL camp with Mississauga.

“For the off-season I’m going to work out and skate with Athletes Fuel and get ready for the camp,” he explained. My main goals this summer is to get bigger and stronger to play at the next level. Also I want to become faster skater.”

The Mississauga Steelheads finished the OHL season with a 33-32-3 record. Their roster this season included NHL first round picks Michael McLeod and Owen Tipppet, and second rounder Nicholas Hague.

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