The Merritt Centennials are announcing that Daniel Tkac has been asked to represent his home country of Slovakia in the upcoming World Junior Championships.
The 5'11, 185 pound Slovakian, has been dynamite for the Centennials this season scoring 6 goals and setting up 14 in 23 games played. After playing in an energy role last season, he's been thrust into playing more prime time minutes this year and has thrived, already surpassing last years point totals.
The 19 year old Tkac has previous experience playing for his country. He suited up with the U18 Slovakian team where he got into 8 games with the national squad scoring 2 goals and 2 assists before representing Slovakia at the U18 World Juniors where he had 3 points in 5 games.
Tkac says that playing for his country is something he's always dreamed about.
"It's an unbelievable feeling just to get the chance to play. It doesn't happen too often that you get an opportunity like this. It's one of those things that you think about growing up and when it comes you got to make the most of it."
Director of Hockey Operations John Stuart says that having someone from the team representing at the World Juniors is a huge boost for the program.
"Daniel has proven he is an elite player in the BCHL and getting recognized by the Slovakian national team is something he should be very proud of. We will miss him in the line up while he's away for the World Juniors, but we are very proud of him for getting this rare opportunity. His hard work, determination, and being a good, positive teammate is being rewarded by this honor."
The Centennials will be without the services of Tkac from Dec. 6th until January 6th.
Slovakia's first official game will be on December 27th against Kazakhstan. Tkac and Slovakia's competition will also include Sweden, Finland, and Switzerland in group A of the tournament,