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Bonnyville Pontiacs named to AJHL All-League, All-Rookie teams

BONNYVILLE – The Alberta Junior Hockey League’s (AJHL) All-League and All-Rookie teams featured some familiar faces for Bonnyville fans.

Bonnyville Jr. A Pontiac Lucas Thorne made the roster for the north division All-League team, while Thomas Kramer was chosen for the All-Rookie team.

Following each season, the league's general managers and coaches vote on which AJHL players will make the teams.

“The news was great,” Thorne exclaimed. “It’s really an honour to get that award and recognition. There’s been so many good players before me nominated and it’s just an honour.”

In 53 games played, the forward racked up a total of 85 points with 24 goals and 61 assists.

“I give a lot of credit to my coaches. They gave me a lot of opportunities this year to play and showcase my skills. It also helped a lot to be surrounded by so many good players this year, especially with my linemates, Matt McKim and Daine Dubois.”

The end of the Pontiacs playoff-run marked the final Jr. A season for Thorne, who spent three years in Bonnyville in the AJHL. He believes “playing for the Pontiacs is the reason I’m in the position I am.”

“It’s why I have succeeded so much and grown so much as I player,” he added.

Next year will see Thorne trading in his Pontiacs jersey for the Holy Cross University Crusaders, which he described as an exciting next step in his hockey career and life.

After playing alongside Kramer this past season, Thorne wasn’t surprised at all to hear he had been chosen for the All-Rookie team.

“He had an incredible season, and if he wasn’t for him getting hurt, I think he could’ve had an even better season. He was a standout player, not even just as a rookie, but as any player in the league,” Thorne said.

Kramer saw the nod as confirmation that his hard work on the ice paid off.

“It was nice to see that other people thought I was doing well. There’s a lot of good players out there and I’m happy to be with those guys and be one of the best in the league,” the forward said.

Kramer played 39 games in the regular season. He collected 22 goals and 18 assists for 40 points overall.

Joining the Pontiacs meant Kramer had to make the move north from the United States, which was a daunting idea for him.

“It was really different living away from home for the first time, but it really helped that we had a really tight team. They all made it very special and I enjoyed my time in Bonnyville. It was a good experience for me hockey-wise, I loved it.”

He added, “I love my teammates and I really liked what the coaches did for me, where I lived, and the whole situation. Everything lined up perfectly for me. We got treated amazingly and our program was a class act.”

Kramer was thankful for the opportunity to come and play for the Pontiacs this year and hopes to step onto the ice next season to represent Bonnyville again.

Robynne Henry, Bonnyville Nouvelle

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