Casper Coyotes... not the animal... But the newest hockey team in town... Joins the Western States Hockey League as Casper's first junior hockey team.
Chad Parrish, team owner says, "we've got three Swedish players, three finish players, two from the Ukraine, a Canadian and two Latvians."
With half the team coming from outside the US.... you may be wondering.. how exactly are players recruited from overseas?
Parrish says, "we spent the whole summer recruiting, we do tournaments coach ambrif and myself, we run tournaments for triple a level kids which is kind of the highest level you can play at in the us. And then we've also got international scouts that work with camps in Sweden and Finland."
Needless to say, any player willing to take a 15 hour international flight to play for the Casper Coyotes... Must be dedicated.
"It's very exciting to be here and I've been waiting all my life to get here so. It's a dream come true."
Erik, a player from Finland says, "I'm really excited to be here in the US and play hockey for the Coyotes. It should be really exciting."
Coyotes' head coach John Ambrefe came from Boston to lead the team to victory... And says Casper was the right place to build a team for the WSHL
Ambrefe says, "Casper was definitely the right fit for us. Great community, great support, people are very excited they wanted hockey back here in casper and we're very excited that we picked the wshl in casper."
The team consists of players ranging from 17 to 21 years old... And this league could be crucial to their college career... Including the international players.
Parrish says. "so a lot of them come over and this is a stepping stone league for them to get into a college scholarship type situation."
Bottom line... The Casper coyotes are eager for their season to start in September.
Also on the team are Casper's very own Matt Loundagin and Brady Griffin.
The team will host a benefit barbecue event September 6th at the Casper Ice Arena from 9 to 4 pm.
The puck drops for the first game on September 19th.