Eagles make bench hire

The Surrey Eagles announced Friday the hiring of Cam Keith as Head Coach and Associate General Manager. Keith joins the Eagles after spending last season as the Associate Head Coach and Associate General Manager of the Chilliwack Chiefs.

Keith has previous BCHL experience as the former Head Coach and General Manager of the Trail Smoke Eaters from 2016-2018, and also coached professionally with the Cincinnati Cyclones of the ECHL from 2014-2016.

During his playing career, Keith spent three seasons in the BCHL before heading to the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. After graduating, he went on to appear in over 500 professional games – including 146 in the AHL and 213 in the ECHL.

“Cam is a coach that I was able to build a relationship with over the years,” Eagles General Manager Blaine Neufeld said about the hiring. “He’s someone that I feel can be trusted with this hockey team. I know that he excels at developing young players, and we share the exact same vision on how we need to build this team.”

Keith will also be responsible for the bulk of the team’s hockey operations decisions moving forward, Neufeld explained.

“Our entire program is built on finding good people and placing them in roles that they are proficient at. I know Cam will be excellent at building our hockey club. Chuck Westgard and I have entrusted him with that, and we will support the path that he takes us on.”

Westgard, the team’s sole owner, is excited to turn over the reigns of a young Eagles lineup to such an experienced and well-respected leader. He sees the addition as a great step forward for the stability of the organization in the future.

“This is a very exciting day for us,” Westgard commented. “We wanted to make a statement by finding a coach who can instantly aid in recruiting and developing our young players. We have hopefully taken care of some rumours about the direction of our hockey club with this decision, and I can assure that Cam allows us to carry out our vision of bringing a winning culture back to South Surrey.”