Just more than 2000 fans were in attendance at the CN Centre as the Everett Silvertips hit the road for a game against the Prince George Cougars on December 28, 2021.
Kyan Grouette was in the lineup and the game was tied at two apiece after Alex Swetlikoff scored his 15th of the season for Everett to tie it. Then 4:46 into the second period, Grouette took a pass from Roan Woodward and he snapped it past Ty Young. Grouette's celebration was electric and rightfully so as the now 18-year-old scored his first goal in the Western Hockey League. Kyan went on to play four games with Everett last season and he also helped the Parkland U18 Rangers to their most successful season in more than 20 years.
Recording 56 points in the regular season and another five in the playoffs, Grouette was a key piece to Parkland making the second round of the playoffs. A series loss against Brandon in the second round would ultimately close the chapter on Kyan's chapter of playing with Parkland. Since that chapter closed, a new chapter has begun and it sees Kyan playing full-time with the Silvertips this season. He's suited up in 34 of the team's games and he has one goal.
"Things are going great here, I'm trying to soak in as much as possible from the veteran guys," said Grouette. "I'm trying to do the little things right and just do anything the coaches want, I'm learning more and more every day, I love it here."
Kyan has missed a dozen games this year and he understands that a time may come this season when he finds himself out of the lineup again, but the Dauphinite is using that as fuel to push himself harder.
"It's a process, I just have to work hard every day because that goes a long way here," offered Grouette. "It's up to me to show why I deserve a spot in the lineup each game and that's a good opportunity for me, I know I have to work hard at all times."
A few of Kyan's favourite moments this season came when the team made their way to Manitoba for games against Winnipeg and Brandon. That allowed Kyan's family and friends to be in attendance at both Wayne Fleming Arena and Westoba Place as well as Brandt Place in Regina when Grouette and the Silvertips played Connor Bedard and the Pats.
"It was really nice to be back with the family, it had been quite a while," offered Grouette. "It was nice to tell them in person that I'm having a lot of fun and enjoying everything."
Another exciting part is the fact that Everett is in a battle for a playoff spot and they're in a good spot right now. Sitting in fifth place in the Western Conference, Everett is well on their way to advancing to the postseason. The front runners in the West are Portland, Kamloops, and Seattle, but as Kyan says, no one should sleep on the 'Tips.
"We're a good team, we have lost a lot of games by a single goal," said Grouette. "We didn't make any big moves at the deadline to add to our group, but I think everyone in the room believes in themselves."
Ever since he was just a young boy growing up playing within Dauphin Minor, Kyan always dreamt of playing in the Western Hockey League and he is very thankful that he's getting the opportunity to do just that.
"I love it here," he ended. "I love going to the rink every day to be with my teammates and to play the game I love, it's a dream come true."