Sea to Sky pucksters growing in new league 

Reimer, Malthaner join Vancouver NW Hawks for inaugural minor midget season

click to flip through (2) PHOTO SUBMITTED - LIKE A HAWK Milo Malthaner is suiting up for the Vancouver NW Hawks this season.
  • Photo submitted
  • LIKE A HAWK Milo Malthaner is suiting up for the Vancouver NW Hawks this season.
 

Two Sea to Sky hockey players are making their way in the big city.

Whistler forward Anthony Reimer and Pemberton defenceman Milo Malthaner have been major contributors to the Vancouver NW Hawks in the inaugural season of BC Hockey's minor midget league for 15-year-old players. Both grew up playing for the Whistler Minor Hockey Association's Winterhawks.

Though the Hawks have struggled to a 2-13-3 record, both have enjoyed the experience thus far, and feel their respective skills have been sharpened by the experience.

"The team's not doing the best this year, but for myself and my development, it's gone really, really well," said Reimer, who has three goals and three assists in 18 games. "(I've improved) on keeping up with the speed. It's a lot faster down here, so I'm making decisions quicker, processing everything quicker. That's definitely improved a lot."

After some experimentation with different players, Reimer has found chemistry with Nikolas Hoogendoorn, who is second on the team in scoring. He's also pleasantly surprised with how much opportunity he has been given in his grinder role.

"This year, I'm a hard-worker-type player, more of a passer," he said. "I expected to be a fourth-line guy and not get too much ice time, but it's turned out that I'm contributing. It's really good and I'm really enjoying it."

Malthaner, who strives to strike the balance between defensively responsible and an offensive contributor, has tallied an assist in 16 games thus far. He has enjoyed the chance to jump up a level with the chance to make new friends. Malthaner has played in a variety of situations, noting he is regularly deployed with Sebastian Biagi at even strength while Quinn Myles is his penalty-killing partner.

"It's going pretty well," he said. "It's fun hanging out with these new guys."

Hawks head coach Guido Lamberti-Charles, a veteran player who suited up for more than a decade in Germany, praised both Sea to Sky players and hopes to have more locals on his roster in seasons to come.

"Anthony has been a key for us as a power forward, hard-working (player). I really like his attitude, he's such a great kid and he works every single day, trying his best," Lamberti-Charles said. "The Whistler kids are good, they have a good work ethic."

When Reimer first heard about the new Minor Midget League, he encouraged Malthaner to join him at the tryout. While he wasn't anticipating making the team, Reimer was glad he did.

"This is the first year that there's ever been anything like this, so I just thought I'd come and try it. I didn't expect to make it, really, but when I made it, a lot of things changed," he said, adding that he comes down from Whistler on Monday nights to stay with his grandparents and buses to practices Tuesday through Friday.

Malthaner, meanwhile, recently moved to North Vancouver to shorten the commute.

If Reimer and Malthaner follow their respective plans for 2019-20, this would be their final season together. Reimer hopes to make the jump to the Hawks' major midget team next season while Malthaner hopes to follow in the footsteps of older brother Noah, who is playing for the Jr. 'B' Comox Valley Glacier Kings of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League this season.

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