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Bucks at a glance: Owen Forfellow

 

In February, while the Cranbrook Bucks continued to prep for their inaugural season, they announced their second player commitment. Owen Forfellow was introduced as the Bucks first committed defenseman, about a week after the announcement of forward Noah Leibl. Forfellow is 18-years-old, and is from Abbotsford, BC.

Forfellow joins the Bucks after two seasons with the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds of the BC Hockey U18 AAA league. He spent the two seasons prior to that with Yale Hockey Academy of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League.

At the 2017 Western Hockey League bantam draft, Forfellow was selected in the fourth round, 73rd overall by the Lethbridge Hurricanes. He was one of 66 players from the CSSHL selected in the WHL draft that year. Forfellow was also the highest of two Abbotsford natives to be taken in that WHL draft.

Forfellow was also an affiliate player for the Coquitlam Express over the last two seasons. He was called up on a few different occasions and has two career BCHL games under his belt.

The strong hockey prospect was not a one-sport wonder, however. Forfellow also played baseball with the Abbotsford Minor Baseball Association. In 2013, he was named to the National League All-Star team, participating in Mosquito All-Star Sunday. The focus will shift back to his hockey accomplishments though, as we look a little deeper into his young career.

Forfellow’s playing career so far

Forfellow joined Yale Hockey Academy of the CSSHL for the 2016-17 season. He played for Yale’s bantam prep team in the CSSBHL that season. In 28 games, he notched one goal and five assists for six points, to go along with 32 penalty minutes. Forfellow also played one game that season for Yale Academy’s Elite 15s, of the CSSHL Elite 15s division. He was held off the scoresheet in that lone game.

In the April of that year, Forfellow competed at the 2017 U16 BC Cup, where he played for Team White at the Shaw Centre in Salmon Arm.

Forfellow spent the bulk of the 2017-18 season with the Elite 15s. The defenseman elevated his production that season, recording three goals and 16 assists for 19 points in 31 games, as well as 50 penalty minutes. He also got into four games with Yale’s prep team in the CSSHL, contributing four assists.

Forfellow would then make the jump to the BC Hockey U18 AAA league (formerly the BC Major Midget League), playing for the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds. In the 2018-19 season, he managed five goals, nine points, and 50 penalty minutes in 32 games. At the Mac’s AAA U18 tournament that season, Forfellow scored one goal in four games for the Thunderbirds.

The following season, Forfellow once again elevated his production from the year before. He scored nine goals and add 15 assists for 24 points in 33 games, and amassed 64 penalty minutes.

In December, Forfellow was affiliated by the Coquitlam Express to play two games against the division rival Chilliwack Chiefs. He did not record any points and had two penalty minutes in the two games, both wins for the Express.

Forfellow becomes Bucks’ first committed defenceman

In February, the Bucks announced the signing of the 2002-born defenceman from Abbotsford.

“The Cranbrook Bucks are excited to announce the commitment of Owen Forfellow for the 2020-21 season,” read the team’s news release.

“We are really excited that Owen will be coming to Cranbrook for next season,” said owner and president Nathan Lieuwen. “He is a well rounded, good skating defenceman and an outstanding young man which makes him a great fit for the type of team we are building here.”

Like Leibl before him, Forfellow sees the opportunity provided to him by the expansion Bucks. He is poised to take the next step in his development when he suits up for the Bucks this coming season.

Likewise, from the Bucks’ perspective, they were able to grab an 18-year-old defenseman that will likely make a big impact in the team’s first season.