Signing News: Sam Anderson Joins Widnes for 2019/20 Season

The YKK sponsored Widnes Wild are pleased to announce the signing of a brand new player to the NIHL for the forthcoming 2019/20 Laidler Division season, although one who is already very well known around the Planet Ice rink at Widnes.

16 year old forward Sam Anderson is Widnes born and bred and joined the Wild junior set up when it was first launched in 2013.

He is the son of Jon Anderson who was the Wild team manager for several seasons and also a recreational player with the Wildcats and Raiders teams at Planet Ice Widnes – and Sam has also helped out operating the scoreboard at Wild games in the past.

In recent seasons, Sam has been playing competitive hockey for the Manchester Storm Academy teams. In the 2017/18 season he was captain of the Storm U15 team and finished the season as their top points scorer with 31 goals and 10 assists in just 12 games. He also scored 5 goals for the Storm U18 team that season and played again for the Storm U18s this past season as well.

Anderson will joining the Wild on a 2-way arrangement which will see him playing primarily for the Wild Academy Under 18 team for the 2019/20 season but also training regularly with the Wild NIHL team.

Talking about Sam’s return to Widnes, Wild Head coach Mike Clancy said:

“This is a signing I’m particularly pleased with. It signals the start of the Widnes Wild building home grown talent and provides the platform to opening the clubs development pathway from junior to senior ice hockey.”

“Although Sam signs with us on a two way to the new Widnes Wild U18’s team, he will train with the Wild seniors on a full time basis making Sam available for senior team selection”.

“After meeting Sam in person last week he impressed me beyond his years. He’s an absolute credit to the organisation and his family. I have high hopes of Sam gaining regular game time as the season progresses as he’s willing to compete and work hard for his place.”

Talking about his signing for Widnes, Sam Anderson said:

“Since starting skating 6 years ago, playing for Widnes has always been an aspiration of mine and, now that I have the chance to do so it’s such an honour – especially with it being my home town, which makes it all the better.”

“Playing senior hockey early on was definitely an ambition of mine and getting the chance to play for the Wild is an exciting milestone in my hockey career”.

Anderson is only the second Widnes born player to sign for the Wild NIHL team, following in the footsteps of home grown netminder Barry Sprakes who made his NIHL debut in the 2017/18 season.

The Wild women’s team were actually the first Widnes team to ice home born and trained players in competitive games when Sav Sumner and Sarah Roberts iced for the Wild women at the start of the 2016/17 season in the Women’s Premier League.

Sam Anderson will be wearing the number 23 shirt and his home, away and warm up shirts are available to own and loan and more information can be found here:   http://www.widneswild.co.uk/own-loan-grid/

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The Widnes-based Riverside Raiders lost 4-7 in their big local derby clash against the Deeside based Flintshire Phantoms in the Summer Classic Cup at Planet ice Widnes on Sunday.

The Raiders have an away game this Saturday 15th June against the Blackburn Buccaneers – also in the Cup. However, because of refurbishment works being done at the Blackburn rink, the game is being played at the Deeside rink in Queensferry, north Wales, which is, in fact, a lot closer and easier for the Raiders team and supporters to get to. The game faces off at 5pm this Saturday and admission is free.

The Raiders are next at home the following Sunday 23rd June when they take on the Shropshire Huskies in the cup at Planet Ice Widnes. The face off time for that game is 4.30pm and admission is also free.

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