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Bishop Canevin hockey well represented at Keystone State Games

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Matt Bilski will skate with the West midget team at the 2013 Keystone State Games.
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Wednesday, July 31, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
 

While the summer might seem like the time to play baseball or soccer, three members of the Bishop Canevin hockey program will be on the ice for the 2013 Keystone State Games this weekend.

“(Bishop Canevin) assistant coach William Zuri texted the team to come and try out,” sophomore Alec Bosnic said. “Anything to keep you skating in the summer is a good thing.”

Bosnic ­— with fellow Crusaders sophomore Thomas Krivak and recent grad Matt Bilski — will play on the West Midget team. The squad is comprised of players ages 18 and under from schools from across the PIHL including Bethel Park, Brashear, Canon-McMillan, Hampton, Montour, South Fayette, Thomas Jefferson and Upper St. Clair

Zuri has helped coach the Keystone Games hockey squads in the past. He said he uses it as a way to get back into the swing of things as a coach, and it grants the players the chance to skate out of their comfort zone.

“It gives players an opportunity to play with guys they have never played with before,” Zuri said. “They get to go against new competition in a quick tournament and represent the region.

“Hopefully, we can take home a few wins and a gold medal.”

There also will be teams representing the Central, East and South regions of Pennsylvania.

Bosnic and Krivak agreed that playing against the top talent from across the state will prepare them for the 2013-14 season.

“We are going to play against some bigger and faster guys,” Bosnic said. “That way when we get back to playing in the PIHL and with our travel teams, we will be better adjusted to what we will see.”

Krivak will use the time in Harrisburg as a way to prepare for his sophomore season after missing almost all of the 2012-13 season.

He was forced to the bench with a broken fibula.

“It feels great to be playing again,” Krivak said. “I am excited to get on the ice playing with friends and other high school players.”

Bosnic finished last season with 11 goals and 11 assists, and Bilski finished with six goals for a Bishop Canevin squad that went 16-1-2 and reached the Class AA Penguins Cup semifinals.

While the Crusaders are looking to improve their skills at the Keystone event, they said they hope to skate away with gold medals.

The last time the West Midget team won gold at the Keystone State games was in 2011.

The West won the Sharrer Cup — presented to the top region — last year thanks to gold-winning performances in peewee and junior female levels as well as silvers in the bantam, midget and junior male levels.

“It should be some good hockey,” Krivak said. “We want to go out and have fun and get better.

Z”I have never done this before, but we should be playing against some of the best hockey players in the state.”

The West will kick off its schedule with an 8:30 a.m. showdown with the East squad Friday.

It will follow it with games against the South on Saturday and Central on Sunday.

Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5813 or at nsmith@tribweb.com.

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