Mid-Michigan Icer's Name Etched into the Memorial Cup

    Additional Reporting by
    icon Mar 11, 2024
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The Memorial Cup is sometimes referred to as one of the hardest championships to win in hockey.


Factoring in the number of teams from across the Canadian Hockey League’s member leagues, the Memorial Cup tournament is played between their top teams, and has a limited eligibility period for players to compete at the major junior level.


It is the national championship of the Canadian Hockey League and, in essence, the Holy Grail for Junior Hockey.


And a player with ties to mid-Michigan has his name firmly etched into the Cup. Saverio “Sam” Posa – a native of Grand Blanc – was a member of the Windsor Spitfires who won the 2010 Memorial Cup when they pummeled the Brandon Wheat Kings 9-1 in the championship game. Windsor was a spotless 4-0 during the prestigious tourney, which was hosted by Brandon, Manitoba.


“I’ve always considered it a blessing to be a part of history like that,” said Posa, who was a mere 17 years of age when he won the Memorial Cup. “There are a lot of very famous names on that trophy and to be on something with that kind of history is a very humbling thing for me”


“The best memory for me wasn't so much winning but just the celebration at the end of the season with teammates and fans,” he continued. “It was a long year, so just seeing all the hard work pay off was the most rewarding feeling.”


Posa learned how to skate when he was just four-years-old and learned the game of hockey from his father, a long-time Flint-area coach and former professional hockey player. Victor Posa played nine and half seasons of minor league hockey, bouncing around from league to league and team to team - while also playing in a few National Hockey League games.


Saverio Posa attended school in the Goodrich School District until his senior year. The 5-foot-11, 188-pound defenseman caught the eye of several junior teams after winning three State Championships and two National Championships while playing with the Little Caesars amateur team. He then moved to Canada to play junior hockey. Posa lived in Tecumseh, which is located in Windsor, Ontario, where he would graduate from high school.


Posa spent the majority of his four-year OHL career with the Windsor Spitfires, where he was a member of the spectacular 2010 team that not only won the OHL championship but also went on to capture the Memorial Cup. During his final season of major junior, he was chosen to serve as the team’s captain – a rate feat for an U.S.-born player on a Canadian OHL team. It’s an honor Posa didn’t take lightly.


“Wearing the ‘C’ is more of a blessing than anything else, but it’s something any player has great respect for,” noted Posa. “It seemed like such a long shot a few years ago of even making the team because they basically had an NHL-type team over there. So just making it was an accomplishment. Being a captain was just more motivation for me to want to help my team win each night.”


Posa kicked off his pro career with the Missouri Mavericks. Midway through that season, however, Posa elected to leave the Mavericks for the University of Windsor, where he played parts of two seasons before returning to professional play midway into the season when he joined the Indy Fuel of the ECHL. Posa also played 63 regular-season games with the Cincinnati Cyclones and Reading Royals.


His professional career also included playing in Europe for Cortina SG (Italy-A), and in France playing for Ducs d’Angere. He completed his playing career as a Player/Assistant Coach for the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) 2019 Champions, Huntsville Havoc. 


Most recently, Posa was the head coach of the Women’s U19 Little Caesars 2021 National Championship hockey team. 


He played in 246 games during his seven-year professional career. After retiring, he amassed four years of coaching experience in the NA3HL, SPHL and the Little Caesars AAA program before joining the Fint Firebirds staff.


Posa is in his second season with the Firebirds and his first as an Assistant/Skill Development Coach. He joined the Firebirds coaching staff in August of 2022 as an Assistant/Video Coach. During his first season in Flint, he helped the team to a 35-28-4-1 record and a postseason appearance.


The 2023-24 season marks the 104th time the Memorial Cup is presented. The Memorial Cup, one of the most prestigious and coveted trophies in North American sport, has a rich tradition that has shaped the way junior hockey is played in North America.


The trophy was originally known as the OHA Memorial Cup and was donated by the Ontario Hockey Association in March 1919 in remembrance of the many soldiers who paid the supreme sacrifice for Canada in the First World War.  In 2010, the Memorial Cup was rededicated to the memory of all fallen Canadian military personnel.


“In my opinion, it's the three-best junior hockey leagues in the world colliding in one -tournament,” said Posa. Some of the best 16-20-year-old hockey players in the world meet in one city for two weeks and play for one of the hardest trophies to win in all sports. If you're fortunate enough to win your league, you still have to beat other teams that were the best in their leagues.”


The 2024 Memorial Cup presented by Dow will be hosted by the Saginaw Spirit from May 24-June 2 at Saginaw County’s Dow Event Center.

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