Dauphin, Canada

He's coming off a great season with the Midget Parkland Rangers, and was sure to sign with an MJHL team... the question just became when.

And, on August 3 that question was answered when 17-year-old Carter Cockburn signed with his hometown team, the Swan Valley Stampeders.

"It's pretty exciting for sure," said Cockburn. "I'm just really thankful for the opportunity they've given me, and I can't wait for the season to start."

In 48 games with the Rangers last year, the highly talented forward put up 35 goals and assisted on 26 others, which was 31 points more then he produced the season before.

Carter's already had the chance to suit up for the Stampeders, and he did quite well. Late last season, he played in four games and scored once while adding two helpers.

"I wasn't really sure what my expectations were heading into that game," said Cockburn. "But, with the year I had with the Rangers, and obviously having the chance to play with Swan Valley, I feel I have what it takes to play in the MJHL. I just have to keep working hard, and things will pay off."

Just because Carter signed on with the Stampeders, it doesn't necessarily mean that's where he'll end up this season. Later this month he'll head to Everett for the Silvertips Main Camp. He earned the right to try and crack that roster after being listed by the team last season.

"I'm just going to go and give it all I have," said Cockburn. "And, If I'm able to make the team, that's when I'll make my decision."

"It's obviously not going to be easy," he added. "All of the players there are super skilled, and I'm going to have to be at my best just to have a chance. I'm looking forward to the opportunity."

For now, as he prepares for Tips camp, the 17-year-old is playing in the Parkland Source for Sports 4 on 4 Summer Hockey League, and what a first game he had. He scored twice and added one assist last night as his Next Level ST Turbochargers edged their opponent.

"It's a great chance to just get on the ice before these camps start," said Cockburn. "There is a great skill level, and it lets you get your compete level up."

"It's really important to work on your speed during this camp," he added. "And, I'm always working on my shot."