Beau Depencier Is Ready To Take The Next Step
A member of this year’s Chatham-Kent Cyclones Minor Midget ‘AAA’ team, Depencier was not selected in the 2020 OHL Draft. Although his dream of being selected didn’t come to fruition, Depencier has a plan for next season, and he’s ready to prove he can elevate his game, and become a high level prospect.
“My plan for minor midget was just to go out and work hard every shift, control the controllable, play a physical game and help our team do as well as possible,” said Depencier of playing this season with the Chatham-Kent Cyclones.
“I was definitely disappointed with being passed over in the OHL Draft. I had a few teams watching me and showing interest and was given pretty good odds of being drafted. Things change come draft day, it doesn’t always work out the way you want it to but that just motivates me to keep proving myself moving forward.
Regardless of the outcome of the draft, Depencier had already committed to play for The Hill Academy, a prep sport school, in February.
“I had been looking at The Hill Academy and a couple other schools from a young age,” Depencier said of his choice to take the Canadian Sport School route.
“It’s something I had been thinking about for a long time. Obviously with the distance, I needed to make sure I was ready to move away from my family and I feel ready going into grade 11 and will be turning 16 in the Fall, to make the step. The Hill Academy has a great reputation. I like how it is about not only bettering you as an athlete but also an overall person with leadership and character.”
Depencier, a Dresden product, who spent his Major Bantam season playing ‘AAA’ with the Lambton Jr. Sting, is ready for the challenges Hill will provide, living what many would compare to an NCAA hockey schedule.
“I’ll be playing double the amount of games I did this year and get to wake up and skate every morning before school and working out is also part of my daily routine,” said Depencier of what he is looking forward to at Hill.
“I’ll get to travel a lot ad be exposed to different parts of Canada and the US on a highly competitive team and in a lot of tournaments.”
Operating from a brand new campus in Caledon, Ontario, Hill has a history of producing top tier hockey players. In fact, players choosing the Sport School route are now committing directly to NCAA Division I programs, advancing to OHL rosters, and are even being drafted to the NHL from these teams.
For Depencier, who had 14 points in 33 games this season for the Cyclones, he’s joining an elite program with some impressive alumni.
“It’s an honour to be recruited by the school,” he said. “When I look at some of the guys who have attended The Hill, I know I’m following the path of some great players. Mitch Marner, Nick Ritchie, Brandt Clarke, and most recently Shane Wright, an impeccable player and guy who I actually got to go out and practice with a year ago at the school.”
With those names, OHL and NHL first round picks and stars, participating with Hill Academy, it’s a safe bet to say Depencier’s development curve is about to increase exponentially.
With an uncertain offseason leading into his first year at Hill due to COVID-19, Depencier is keeping in regular contact with his new coaches, and working hard at home to prepare.
“The coach of the U16 team actually called me recently. He wanted to touch base with me and see how I’m doing and what training I’m getting in during this tough time. I’ve set up a TRX, pull up bar, and free weights in my basement and also have a wide open area to take shots daily. Other than that, I rollerblade every day to keep my legs going and have done some work outs through video. The coach says the better shape I start the season in the more I’ll adjust to the busy schedule. He’s going to be in contact every couple weeks which is great, especially during this time when you feel so isolated.”
Now, the only thing left for Depencier is to continue working hard, preparing in any way he can, and working to contain his excitement for the next step of his hockey, and academic career at The Hill Academy this coming season.
“I’m just really looking forward to the whole experience at The Hill Academy and I feel ready to take the next step in my hockey career and education, and think it will be a great experience to grow as a player and a person.”