It’s not unheard of for a Havre athlete to gain attention from other programs, or from sports fans across the state. But Blake Preeshl has taken that attention one step further, gaining recognition on a national level.
Preeshl has played hockey since he was 6 years of age, and played for the Havre Ice Hawks until 2011. From there, he began to commute from Havre to Helena to play for the Helena Bighorns, where he was fortunate enough to win a state championship. And his efforts haven’t gone unnoticed, as he has continued advance as a player, and has joined an elite group of players in doing so.
Last summer, Preeshl tried out for the AAA Colorado Rampage, and that was just the beginning of his national success.
After a season as an assistant captain for the Rampage, he was able to compete in several different states with the program. He then attended a state camp in Helena, with the hopes of a district camp next in line. While at the state camp, junior hockey coaches, and professional scouts, were able to evaluate Preeshl. And out of everybody, Preeshl was one of just a few players slected to move onto the USA Hockey’s Northern Plains district camp in Fargo, N.D.
District hockey camp is tough. Preeshl was able to compete at the Scheels Center against players from all over Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota and South Dakota. It takes a lot to be noticed at this level, but Preeshl contined to turn heads, this time being selected to the Select Player Development National camp in Amherst, N.Y., this July.
The select camp is not a tournament, but more on the side of intense training. The camp’s purpose is to improve players, but also put them on display for other coaches and scouts across the country. It is a huge opportunity, and a goal Preeshl has had for himself for sometime. And now that Preeshl has gained national recognition, he now has the opportunity to display his skills against other top talent from across the United States.
Preeshl still has a lot of hockey ahead of him, but this camp, facing this caliber of talent, could open many doors moving forward.