The youngest age a player can currently play in the BCHL is 16, but over the years, not many that age have made an impact.
However, there are some who have gone on to have solid NHL careers, like Kyle Turris, Duncan Keith, Jeff Tambellini, Colton Sissons and Jujhar Khaira.
More recently, Tyson Jost, Dennis Cholowski, Dante Fabbro and Alex Newhook are players who played in the BCHL as 16-year-olds and look like they’re the real deal when it comes to being full-time NHLers.
The league used to have a rule that mandated each team to roster two players aged 17 or younger, but that’s changed so each team is now required to roster a minimum of four rookies. It considers a rookie as a player entering the season with less than 30 games of junior A experience.
The 2018-19 season saw sixteen 16-year-olds play more than half the year in the league, lead by Kent Johnson’s 46 points (20-26-46) for the Trail Smoke Eaters. Trail, Chilliwack, Salmon Arm, Penticton, Surrey, Langley, Nanaimo, Vernon, Alberni Valley, Merritt and Wenatchee’s rosters had at least one 16-year-old on their respective rosters last season. Meanwhile, Cowichan Valley, Powell River, Victoria, Coquitlam, Prince George and West Kelowna didn’t have any.
Below is a list of the top scoring 16-year-olds from last season who played more than 25 games.
|John Little||Salmon Arm||10-16-26|
|Brandon Santa Juana||Surrey||12-10-22|
|Austin Spiridakis||Alberni Valley||6-5-11|
|Wyatt Marlow||Salmon Arm||1-2-3|