In his second year as a Golden Rocket, sophomore defenceman Brett DeFrias is as thrilled as ever to be here.
“I love it here, and the town is great, peaceful,” said DeFrias, who’s very happy with the team they have this year.
“We’ve got a couple new players, we’re just filling in the holes of what we need, some power play guys, a couple more goal scorers. We’ve changed a lot, but it’s been good so far.”
The 5 foot 6 Kamloops boy has carved out a niche for himself as a rough and fearless blueliner.
“I’m a pretty gritty guy. I like to go into the corners, even though I’m smaller than most of the people out there. But I love being aggressive,” he said. DeFrias is currently the second highest scoring defenceman, and has the second most penalty minutes on the team.
At 18 years old, DeFrias hopes to continue with hockey as long as he can, whether that’s in the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League, higher junior leagues, or college hockey.
“I’ve got two more years left, and if all else fails up in higher leagues next year then I will be back (in Golden) for sure,” he said. “I’m going to go as far as I can in hockey, and then I want to proceed with being a lawyer. Maybe hockey can take me to school. I’d be pretty happy with that.”
But for the time being DeFrias is happy being an athlete year round, playing hockey in the fall and winter, and after a short break, jumping into Junior B Lacrosse for the spring and summer.
“I play lacrosse in Kamloops,” said DeFrias. “It’s pretty high tempo, really good lacrosse. Just two years ago we won provincials, and then we went up to nationals and came in third. It was a pretty fun year for me, we went all the way to Ontario.
“Brett Hanna (fellow Rockets defenceman), plays lacrosse too, he plays for Vernon and he’s actually the captain. We used to play off each other there. So it’s always fun, coming together unknowingly on the team, chirping each other about lacrosse.”
At the moment, however, it is hockey that has DeFrias’ full attention.
“I want to go all the way in the playoffs. We’ve got to get past the first round tho, this team hasn’t been passed the first round in a couple years, so hopefully this year we can do it,” he said.