Dekoning brings OHL experience to the Briercrest net

Posted: May 30, 2016

The Briercrest men’s hockey team is excited to add a goalie who has Ontario Hockey League (OHL) experience in Daniel Dekoning to their team for the 2016-17 season.

Dekoning played for the Erie Otters and the Owen Sound attack of the OHL the last two seasons, after gaining minor hockey experience closer to his hometown of Listowel, Ontario.

“I started playing hockey as early as I can remember and besides playing forward for a bit during my first year I have been a goaltender ever since, Dekoning explained. “Throughout my minor hockey career I played for the Maitland Ice Sharks, and then the Huron Perth Lakers (AAA) during my first two years of high school.”

 “During my junior career I played for the Listowel Cyclones Jr.B my final two years of high school, and then the Erie Otters of the OHL and the Owen Sound Attack in the OHL,” the 6’ 3” goaltended continued. “Highlights of my career begin with winning the novice Lobster Cup, and then winning two All-Ontario’s with the Listowel Cyclones. Another highlight includes winning the Alliance Championship in Minor Bantam. Getting drafted into the OHL and then making it to the OHL finals with the Erie Otters are more recent highlights.”

Dekoning is not just a proficient hockey player, but has also excelled in the classroom.

“I attended high school at Listowel District Secondary School,” he explained. “I was an Honour Roll student. In Grades eleven and twelve I won the Rick Hansen Difference Maker Award. I also played on the school soccer team for all four years of schooling and the hockey team in Grades 9 and 10.”

Briercrest Hockey head coach Jamie Ramer is excited to add a player of Dekoning’s caliber to the Briercrest team this coming season.

"We are excited to add a guy like Dan to our goalie roster and team,” Ramer explained. “He will bring with him some great junior hockey experiences and will certainly contribute to our quality and depth between the pipes.   It seemed like it ended up being really good timing and fit for him with our school and program.  As much as the opportunity and competition will no doubt challenge him to continue to develop as a goalie, I am also excited in having him be a part of our team and school community and the opportunity to receive a great education while also growing in the most important areas of life and faith.”

Dekoning plans to study business while at Briercrest.

 “I am looking forward to getting an education while being able to play the game that I love and further strengthen my relationship with God,” he explained.

He expanded on some of his church highlights the last couple of years.

“I attend church at Listowel Evangelical Missionary Church,” he said. “In 2012 and 2014 I was able to go on a work camp mission trip with my church in Pittsburgh, PA and Jamestown, PA. On these mission trips I was privileged enough to help people in need by serving at a soup kitchen, painting houses, building decks, roofing houses etc.”

Like many Briercrest student-athletes Dekoning’s commitment has alumni connections.

“A special thanks our growing scouting and alumni network who are working with me to watch and connect with players,” coach Ramer explained. “Eric Ballantyne is one our Briercrest Hockey alumni who had made the original connection with Dan there in Ontario.”

Ballantyne shared about his relationship with Dekoning this past year.

“I had the opportunity to connect with Dan Dekoning during the past hockey season while he played goal for the Owen Sound Attack of the Ontario Hockey League,” Ballantyne explained. “Dan had a solid season where he shared the net minding duties with Montreal Canadian prospect, Michael McNiven.  Dan was awarded player of the week honours in March after providing solid goaltending over a number of games.  Dan had played the previous two seasons with the Erie Otters of the OHL where he was a teammate with Connor McDavid. 
The Attack had a solid season where they beat the London Knights twice in their first round matchup.  The Knights did not lose another game throughout the rest of the playoffs on their way to capture the Memorial Cup.”

“I met Dan during the regular season and I was impressed with his maturity and demeanor both on and off the ice,” Ballantyne continued. “After the season ended, I had a chance to talk with Dan about Briercrest as it seemed like an opportunity for him to consider as his OHL career concluded. Dan seemed genuinely interested in the faith based education at Briercrest and the high level hockey program led by Jamie Ramer.”
Ballantyne looks forward to watching Dekoning continue to mature as he takes the next step in his hockey career.
“I look forward to following Dan throughout his time at Briercrest as he brings his high level goaltending abilities to the hockey program.  Above all, I look forward to Dan growing in his Christian faith as he endeavours in this new journey.”


For more information about the Briercrest Hockey team like the “Briercrest Hockey” facebook page.