Over the last few days, players around the WHL have been returning to their teams following the World Junior Hockey Championships.
Rockets forward Gabriel Szturc returned to Kelowna with a silver medal from playing with Czechia at the World Juniors early Saturday morning. Tuesday night was his first game back to the Rockets lineup and he was unexpected greeted by the local exchange students.
Students studying in Kelowna from Czechia, Germany, and Slovakia came to the game with a Czechia flag to show their support to the 19-year-old photo.
A super cool moment for these fans from Czechia, Slovakia and Germany who are studying in Kelowna.— Kelowna Rockets (@Kelowna_Rockets) January 11, 2023
They came to the game tonight with Czechia flags to give Gabriel Szturc a warm welcome back from the World Juniors, we surprised them with the chance to take a photo with Gabby. pic.twitter.com/nOFlzLHiqW
Kelowna Rockets Communications and Social Media Director Paige Bednorz saw the fans and set up the meeting. The kids first thought they were in trouble but ended up meeting their hero.
These kids thought they were in trouble when I pulled them out from the crowd and behind the barriers, it was priceless to see the excitement hit them when they realized they were going to get to meet Gabriel Szturc. https://t.co/sWVloxv1Ng— paje (@n0r2y) January 11, 2023