Adrian Carlsen comes in from Denmark to pursue shot with Mentor Ice Breakers
Adrian Carlsen logged a lot of miles to get his shot with the Mentor Ice Breakers.
This past weekend, as Ice Breakers coach and general manager Iain Duncan conducted a tryout camp for his expansion Federal Hockey League franchise, Carlsen was one of three players not originally from North America looking to make a home here.
The young goaltender is from Denmark â" and that's quite a long distance to come to not make it worthwhile.
So Carlsen is determined to stick around and extend his stay in Lake County.
Due to a late rush of goalies paying their tryout fee, Carlsen ended u p as one of 14 goalies on the tryout camp roster for the Ice Breakers.
Suffice to say, there will not be 14 goaltenders carrying on into the season. So Carlsen, who will turn 22 on Dec. 9, is eager to make his mark.
"Last year, I played in the (Greater Metro Junior A Hockey League) in Canada," Carlsen said. "And then after that season, I liked the hockey the way it was played here in (North) America. I got a shot when I was a junior there. So I got a chance to go to the FHL tryout camp in Toronto, like a few months ago.
"And then I ended up here. I'm really excited for that."
Carlsen grew up in Herlev, Denmark, in the northwest suburbs of Copenhagen. Soccer is the most popular sport in the coastal European nation, but Carlsen found his way to hockey.
"It started I think when I was 5," Carlsen said. "My dad took me to a hockey game that was local in that town. And it just came from there. I saw that game, and I was like, 'I want to try that.' And it just kept on going.
"I started as a player, and I switched to goalie when I was around 13. We needed a goalie for our game. I tried that, and I was like, 'I want to keep on going with that.' I like it, and I was pretty good at it."
In addition to playing last year in the GMHL for the Bradford Bulls, going 13-10 with 896 saves and a 3.80 goals-against average, Carlsen has logged several stops amid his hockey journey. He split time between Danish hockey's first and second divisions, including with the Rodovre Mighty Bulls and Gentofte Stars.
With stops in Europe and Canada, Carlsen means business when he comes to Northeast Ohio for a tryout shot.
"It's really important," Carlsen said. "I really like the way the game is here. It fits the way I play a lot compared to the European ice we have back home. So for me, it's really important also because I like the way everything is run over here. It's so much more professional. I want to be here. I fit in here.
"(The key in a tryout camp is) keeping your mind on your own thing. Don't worry about the other goalies. Don't worry about how many there are. Just be there when it's you and work hard for it. If you do well, you'll get on the roster."
And maybe when the Ice Breakers start their inaugural campaign Oct. 27, Carlsen might be skating out representing a new franchise with hopes of staying around a while.
Just like him, all the way from Denmark.
"I've been thinking a lot about it actually," Carlsen said. "It's a big thing for me, especially because it's a new team in the league, and I really want to try something like that, try to build up a history and try to build up something new.
"Hopefully, it's a team that's going to stay here for many, many, many years. And I would like to b e a part of that, be at the beginning of that."
@CLillstrungNH on Twitter
I have worked at The News-Herald since 1999. In 2018, I was honored with an Ohio High School Athletic Association Media Service award and was Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association Division I state sportswriter of the year in 2016.Source: Google News Denmark | Netizen 24 Denmark