Spud tournament is more than just hockey

Bobby Jamieson wins Drew Power Leadership Award

Mitch MacDonald comment@theguardian.pe.ca
Published on January 31, 2016

Spud AAA Minor Hockey Tournament co-chair Andrew Hall, left, congratulates Charlottetown Abbies defenceman Bobby Jamieson on winning the Drew Power Leadership Award during the final day of the Spud championship Sunday. Jamieson was presented with the award prior to Sunday's Midget AAA championship game, which his team also won 3-1. 

©Guardian photo by Mitch MacDonald

The day couldn't have gone much better for Bobby Jamieson.

The 17-year-old Charlottetown defenceman was grasping not one, but two trophies by the end of this year's Spud AAA Minor Hockey Tournament on Sunday.

Jamieson was presented the Drew Power Leadership Award before Sunday's championship game against Pownal, which his team won 3-1.

"I've tried to win this tournament my whole life and this is the first time," said Jamieson, who has participated in the Spud every year of his minor hockey career except for one. "I'm not sure how many years that would be, but it's a lot."



While Jamieson provided a physical presence on the ice throughout the championship game, his commitment during the regular season hasn't gone unnoticed.

The Drew Power Leadership Award is presented annually to an exceptional player with an outstanding work ethic and love for the game.

Other requirements include putting team goals ahead of personal goals, as well as inspiring, encouraging and standing up for teammates.

Power was an influential player who was captain of the Charlottetown Midget AAA Abbies during the 1997 to 1999 seasons. Later, he became an assistant coach for the Holland College junior Hurricanes and the P.E.I hockey community mourned when he died in a house fire in December 2012.

And while Jamieson never met Power, his legacy left on his team has been undeniable.

"It feels really good and I'm honoured to win the award," said Jamieson. "We worked all weekend so we deserved it (the Midget AAA championship). The Drew Power Award on top of that is an extra bonus, it's awesome."

The 41st annual Spud tournament saw 71 minor hockey teams from across the Maritimes participate.

Tournament co-chair Bruce Donaldston, said the tournament has built up a quality reputation for not only the high caliber of hockey, but also the excellent hospitality.

"You have these teams that are kind of repeat participants. They'll start in the Atom level and you get to see them move through the system," said Donaldston. "To me, that really attests to the legacy of what the Spud is all about."

Donaldston said the tournament also has two major economic impacts.

The tournament raises funds to maintain minor hockey fees for Charlottetown players, while also bringing in a large number of off-island teams during a slow time for tourism.

The only possible complication for this year's tournament came and passed with Friday night's winter storm, which Donaldston said did not interrupt the weekend.

"We were a little worried, but we were able to kind of stick to the schedule on Friday, which really helped move things along all weekend."