By Joel Wittnebel/The Oshawa Express
When Team Canada announced its selection camp roster for the upcoming World Junior championship, there was one Oshawa General noticeably left off the list.
Mitch Vande Sompel has been a staple of Oshawa’s blue line for the last four years and, along with being a part of the 2015 Memorial Cup winning team, and a part of three Subway Super Series rosters, he was drafted in the third round, 82nd overall by the New York Islanders in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.
While having his captain Anthony Cirelli sent off to the camp this past weekend, Vande Sompel notes it was a little upsetting not to get the call.
“It’s something you look forward to and you want to play for your entire life and it’s disappointing not getting named to it,” he says. “But at the same time, I play for the Oshawa Generals and I want to help my team succeed and win in any way possible.
For the the 19-year-old, staying positive is key.
“I think the biggest thing is having a positive mindset. It was a down day for me, you could say, but I’m all positive and I’m happy to be with Oshawa.”
And down day or not, Vande Sompel was quick to show the Team Canada scouts exactly what they missed.
The very night after the training camp roster was announced, Vande Sompel led the Generals with a hat trick to stomp the North Bay Battalion 5-2 at their home rink.
He’s kept the momentum going too with five goals in his last six games and 13 so far this season to go along with his 15 assists.
“Mitch is a very proud person. He carries himself with a lot of pride. I don’t think anyone likes to get left off a national team,” says head coach Bob Jones. “Did he use it for motivation? Probably, but you know what, Vande (Sompel) has been a leader and his play of late has been exceptional and I can’t say enough about him.”