ICE HOCKEY – Dunchurch hockey player becomes National Ice Hockey League champion

Dunchurch’s AUSTIN Mitchell-King is now National Ice Hockey League (NIHL) champion after his team’s success in the UK’s second tier of ice hockey.

Mitchell-King plays for Telford Tigers, who appeared on BBC Midlands Today last week, who finished the regular season with two wins to finish with a 10-point margin over second-placed Swindon Wildcats.

The team received their medals and the NIHL trophy in front of a packed stadium after the final league game the previous weekend.

Mitchell-King was a significant contributor to the Tigers’ cause with 14 goals and 21 assists (35 points) in 47 league games, only missing one game through illness.

After the pandemic disruption of the past two years, Mitchell-King earned a spot on the Tigers’ roster last February, playing in a behind-closed-doors streaming series as the sport began to reopen.

He was then drafted at elite level at Coventry Blaze (British tier 1) for another series in a ‘bubble’ for a month at Nottingham.

His performances in these competitions have earned him a professional contract with Telford Tigers for this season (2021/22) as well as a two-way deal with Coventry Blaze as a young British prospect.

With the end of the regular season, the focus now shifts to qualifying for the final weekend in Coventry on April 30 and May 1.

Mitchell-King began his ice hockey journey at under-10 level in Coventry and progressed to under-20 level before moving to Hill Academy in Toronto for two years to play at under-prep level. 18 before the pandemic hit.

In recent years, he has represented Great Britain at Under-18 and Under-20 levels.

He combined his first professional season with the first year of an automotive engineering degree at Loughborough University.

Catherine J. Martinez