‘I want to see us win the league this year’
The Powassan Voodoos 2023-2024 season gets underway on Friday, September 8th as they host the French River Rapids. One of the familiar faces projected to be in the lineup is Alex Little, who will once again don the captain’s “C” on his jersey.
“This is where I started, so I thought ‘why not go for it all?’” says the Minden, Ont., native.
Little’s Junior A career began with a four-game stint as an affiliate with a powerful Powassan Voodoos team which finished first overall in 2019-2020. The COVID-19 pandemic shut the door on Little gaining any more ice time with the club that season, as well as the next year which was completely cancelled.
Little spent those years working out, getting ice time where he could, and continuing to improve in his overall game.
The offensive-minded defenceman received offers to play in different parts of the country, and he had a few scholarship offers in the United States on his table. But Little twice has chosen to come back to Powassan to play for the Voodoos – this time in what will be his final year of Junior A hockey.
“I had a couple of D-III offers, and it wasn’t quite what I was looking for and [head coach] Peter Goulet is the guy I trust with my career so why not have one last ride with the guys here and try to win this league.”
The Voodoos are coming off a second-round playoff exit at the hands of the Timmins Rock and will be looking to advance past the division finals for the first time since 2019 when they lost in the NOJHL finals to the Hearst Lumberjacks.
Little was a big part of the team’s success last season, both offensively and defensively. He was named the NOJHL’s top defenceman and was a finalist as the Canadian Junior Hockey League’s defenceman of the year as well. He finished second in points among d-men with 58 in 54 games played, which was a 30-point improvement from his 2021-2022 total.
“I think I just got more opportunities,” says Little. “As you get older you get more of those and you get a lot more trust from your coaches. I took advantage of that, tried my hardest out there and a lot of good things happened.”
Little has career totals of 86 points and 30 goals in 104 NOJHL contests and the team will be looking to him once again to lead the charge.
“Having your captain back is huge for any team but it is especially special when your captain is a great person, a tremendous hockey player who can play in any situation and a great captain respected by his teammates, staff and fans,” Goulet said during an interview for the Powassan Voodoos website in June.
“Personally I cannot say enough great things about Alex Little as a player he just simply does everything a coach could ever ask for or dream of, and Alex his a true gentleman and a great human being,”
Little says personally, he wants to have a good year, but his main focus is on the team winning games, and lots of them.
“I want to see us win the league this year. We have a good returning group and they all feel the same way. If you win, you get lots of eyes on you. We, as a group, want all of us to succeed as individuals and that’s just going to make us work harder for each other,” he says.
The Voodoos are expected to have as many as 11 returning players when the season begins. Little says that means the team gets to pick up right where they left off from last year.
“You get two full lines at forward, two full lines at defence where everyone knows what’s going on and there’s not a ton of adjusting out of the gate,” he says. “It also helps the new guys get into the routine a little quicker, compared to other years I’ve been here where you almost get a full turnover and it’s really hard to start a season when you’re learning everything from scratch.”
The Frontline Broadcast will produce and provide commentary for the Powassan Voodoos home opener on Friday. It can be seen on FloHockey and heard on the Frontline YouTube channel for free.