Crusader goaltender Matt Tomkins posted his first Alberta Junior Hockey League with a 3-0 win over the Grande Prairie Storm on Saturday, Dec. 8.
Tomkins attributes his recent success to dealing with adversity.
“The biggest difference between this year and last year is last year I came in with no expectations,” Tomkins said. “I came in willing to take on a backup role and then by Christmastime I took over the starting job. There was really no pressure on me and I was just playing. The biggest changes this year was struggling a bit early with the pressure situations, trying to prove why I was drafted and why I have a scholarship, but it’s been a great learning experience with me and learning to deal with the pressure. I think I’ve come a long way.”
Splitting a series with the Storm over the weekend, Tomkins knows that there is still work to be done.
It’s still stuff I have so sit back and analyze and look at,” he said. “I’ve come so far. I had no expectation of being drafted or getting a scholarship, but I’ve had to get used to it pretty quick. I wasn’t expecting it at all and that is what has made it so special to me.”
Next year, Tomkins will be playing for the Ohio State Buckeyes and is looking forward to all that encompasses.
“I’ve been a fan of their football team for some time,” Tomkins said. “I’ve been following the school since I’ve started talking to them as well. The school pride is unbelievable. Their fans are also very passionate. It’s really cool that it is something I’m going to be a part of next year.”