Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Titan to retire Luongo jersey

Press Release

The Acadie-Bathurst Titan is proud to announce that it will be retiring jersey number 1 of former player Roberto Luongo.

The ceremony will take place during the game on Sunday, August 19th, 2012.

There will be an autograph session before the game, details to come.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Cougars Sign Tate Olson

Press Release

The Prince George Cougars are pleased to announce that they have signed 1997-born defenceman Tate Olson (Saskatoon, SK) to a standard Western Hockey League contract. Olson was drafted in the second round (24th overall) by the Prince George Cougars in the 2012 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft.

Last season Olson played with the Saskatoon Stallions where he scored 21 goals, and added 29 assists in 36 games.

“We are very happy to welcome Tate and his family to the Prince George Cougars,” said Prince George Cougars General Manager Dallas Thompson. “We now have our top three draft picks from 2012 signed heading into training camp.”

Olson was one of three signed Prince George Cougars prospects who recently participated in the 2012 Allstate All-Canadians Mentorship Camp in Mississauga, ONT. He and fellow prospects Jansen Harkins and Brad Morrison greatly benefited from the experience, and will be in Prince George for training camp on Friday, August 24th.

“It’s helpful knowing that I’m signed and that I’ll have a great chance to play in Prince George,” said Tate Olson. “There’s going to be some added pressure on me at training camp, but that is something that I’m comfortable with.”

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Coach Ryan Cuthbert Steps Away From the Bench

Press Release

The Kelowna Rockets of the Western Hockey League regret to announce that assistant coach Ryan Cuthbert has resigned from the Rockets for personal reasons.

Cuthbert has been an assistant coach with the Rockets for the past five seasons but has decided to move in a different direction.

“This is a personal choice for me,” said Cuthbert. “I’m going to explore different opportunities. I think of the Hamilton family and the Rockets as my family. I want to thank them for the opportunity to work for what I believe is the best junior organization in Canada and for their continued support through this transition."

Over a five year career as a player with the Rockets, Cuthbert became one of the most popular captains in Rockets history. After a minor pro career was cut short due to injury, Cuthbert returned to Kelowna where he spent the past five years as a Rockets’ assistant coach.

“At this time Ryan feels he needs to step away from the game for a period of time,” said Rockets president and general manager Bruce Hamilton. "We plan to assist Ryan as he makes this transition from the game as he is a member of the Rockets family and always will be"

The Rockets will keep its existing coaching staff intact and the club has no plans to replace Cuthbert behind the bench.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Steel Release 25 Man Roster

Press Release

Bensenville, IL (July 26, 2012) - The Chicago Steel announced their 25-man roster on Thursday for the 2012-13 season. Highlighting this year's team are a pair of NHL Draft picks, 12 returning players from last season and 11 skaters who have made their college hockey commitments.

Mackenzie MacEachern, will be in his first season with the Steel after being selected fourth overall in the 2012 United States Hockey League Entry Draft in May. One month later, the 6-foot-3, 180-pound forward was drafted by the St. Louis Blues in third-round (67th overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. MacEachern was Michigan's Mr. Hockey award winner in 2011-12 following an impressive senior season (42g, 48a).

Also hearing his name called at the 2012 NHL Draft was defenseman Jaccob Slavin. Slavin, who had three goals and 27 assist in 60 games for the Steel last year, was selected by the Carolina Hurricanes with the 120th overall pick. Slavin returns for his second full season in a Chicago uniform after leading his squad to a 12-5-3 record in the final 20 games of the 2011-12 regular season.

The Steel look to continue their winning ways from last season as veterans Alex Sakellaropoulos, Joel Benson, Slavin, Christian Neumann, Phillip Marinaccio, Daniel Kucerovy, Christian Heil, Ali Thomas, Ray Pigozzi, Jeff Kubiak, Charlie O'Connor and Alex Roos welcome Chicago's 13 newcomers to the 2012-13 squad. The Steel will open up the regular season on Friday, Sept. 28 when the Indiana Ice arrive at The Edge Ice Arena for a 7:30 p.m. faceoff.

Individual game tickets, flex plans and season tickets can be purchased by calling the Steel Ticket Office at 630-594-1161 or by logging on to tickets.chicagosteelhockeyteam.com. For a complete 2012-13 regular season please visit us at www.chicagosteelhockeyteam.com.



Alex Sakellaropoulos
Chris Nell


Joel Benson
Matt Joyaux (Miami University)
Johnny Wingels
Jaccob Slavin (Colorado College)
Tim Davison (University of Wisconsin)
Christian Neumann (Air Force Academy)
Brian LeBlanc
Donovan Gardiner


Phillip Marinaccio (Bemidji State)
Daniel Kucerovy
Danny Fetzer
Joseph Widmar
Christian Heil (Colorado College)
Mackenzie MacEachern (Michigan State)
Ali Thomas (Notre Dame)
Thomas Ebbing (Bowling Green)
Ray Pigozzi (University of Denver)
Jeff Kubiak
Charlie O�Connor
Patrick Polino
Alex Roos (Colorado College)
Daniel McNamara
Christopher Dodero

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Attack Ink Lindo

Press Release

Owen Sound Attack General Manager Dale DeGray is pleased to announce that the club has signed 2012 2nd Round Selection (26th overall), Jaden Lindo to a standard Ontario Hockey League player contract.

Lindo, a 6’0, 185lb forward spent the 2011/2012 season with the Toronto Marlboro’s, which saw him notch 15 goals, 20 assists and compile 34 penalty minutes.

Jaden is described as a prototypical power forward that is at his best when skating hard up and down the wing. Lindo takes pride in finishing his checks and is considered one of the hardest hitters in the GTHL.

“Jaden’s size and tenacity will be a welcome addition up front.”, said Attack General Manager Dale DeGray. “He has huge potential as a power forward in the OHL and we feel he is an excellent addition to our club.”

Jaden was also one of five Attack prospects to attend the Ontario Under 17 camp in early July.

The Attack wish to welcome Jaden and his family to the Attack organization.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

67's Sign 2 Defencemen

Press Release

July 31, 2012 (Ottawa ON.): The Ottawa 67’s today announced the signing of two 17-year old Ottawa area defencemen: Nevin Guy and Mathieu Desautels. Guy, a 5’ 11” left defence from Winchester ON., was Ottawa’s 4th round pick in the 2012 OHL Priority Selection draft. He played most of last season with the Winchester Jr. “B” Hawks. Desautels, a 5’ 11” right defence from Green Valley ON. (near Cornwall), was a free agent. He played for the CCHL’s Ottawa Junior Senators last season.

“We’re glad to have both these players under contract,” said 67’s Head Coach and General Manager Chris Byrne. “Nevin is a highly-skilled player, coming off a great season in Winchester. He played a lot of minutes last season and established himself as one of the league’s top puck moving defencemen.” In 42 games with the Hawks, Guy scored 18 goals and recorded 60 points.

“Matt Desautels was one of the top players at our June evaluation camp,” said Byrne. “He showed very strong skating and puck moving skills and he was very hard to play against. We know he had several good options for the coming season and we’re happy he chose the 67’s.” Desautels played in all situations with the Jr. Senators last season and was named the team’s rookie of the year, after scoring 3 goals and 13 points in 53 games.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Bill Kitchen, 1960-2012

Press Release

The Ottawa 67’s family lost a lifetime member yesterday, Bill Kitchen, who played for the team from 1977-78 through 1979-80. He went on to play seven professional seasons that included stops with the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs, and he then launched a successful business career in Ottawa. The 67’s express their deepest sympathies and condolences to Bill’s friends and family.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Neville Off To Michigan Tech

Press Release

The Buzzers wish to announce the commitment of 1993 Forward Michael Neville to Michigan Tech University. MTU is led by coach Mel Pearson (formerly of the Michigan Wolverines)

GM Rich Ricci on Michael. "Michael is a hard working forward that has overcome adversity to see his NCAA goal realized. Michael was an excellent Buzzer captain and a fine young man. Michael's accomplishments at St. Mike's include being a member of 3 play-off teams, a member of Team Canada East and an OJHL Allstar. Michael is a great example of success through perserverance."

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Hailfax Training Camp & Pre-Season Info

Press Release

The Halifax Mooseheads announced their training camp details and pre-season information this afternoon for their 19th season in Moose Country.

The Mooseheads will welcome close to 30 rookies to Cole Harbour Place on Wednesday August 15th to Sunday, August 19th.  The Mooseheads rookies will battle the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles rookies in two pre-season games, Saturday August 18th at the Halifax Forum and Sunday, August 19th at Cape Breton University.  The Mooseheads veterans will report to Camp Monday, August 20th.   There will be no training camp intra-squad games this season.

“We have a solid crop of rookies coming to training camp this year” stated Cam Russell, Mooseheads General Manager.  “Even though we have a large number of veterans returning to this year’s Club, we still expect to have one of our most competitive training camps in several seasons”.

The Mooseheads will play 8 pre-season games in total, including a matchup with the Moncton Wildcats on Saturday, August 25th at Acadia Arena in Wolfville.

“We’re excited to play a game in Wolfville” stated Brian Urquhart, Mooseheads VP Business Operations.  “We’re fortunate to have a lot of Mooseheads fans who travel to the Metro Centre from the Valley for each home game, so it’s nice to be able to bring the Mooseheads to their backyard for a change”.

Tickets for all Mooseheads pre-season home games go on sale this Wednesday, August 1st.  Tickets for the 3 pre-season games at the Halifax Forum will be on sale for $7 each, or all 3 games for $15, at Antlers Merchandise Store at the Halifax Metro Centre or at the Halifax Forum Box Office. Tickets for the pre-season game at Acadia Arena on August 25th will be on sale at Antlers or at the Acadia Arena Box Office.  Tickets are $10 for Adults and Seniors, $7 for kids and students.

A full schedule for the Halifax Mooseheads Training Camp and Pre-Season is below along with the Training Camp roster.

Training Camp Schedule (Rookies Only):

August 15th                                              3pm-5pm                                    Player Registration
August 16th                                              9:30am-11:30am                        Practice @Cole Harbour Place
                                                               3:30pm-5pm                              Practice @Cole Harbour Place
August 17th                                              9:30am-11:30am                        Practice @Cole Harbour Place
                                                               3:30pm-5pm                              Practice @Cole Harbour Place

Training Camp Schedule (All Remaining Players):

August 20th                                              3pm-5pm                                        Player Registration (Veterans)
August 21st                                              10am-Noon                                     Practice @Cole Harbour Place
                                                               1pm-2pm                                       Practice @Cole Harbour Place
August 22nd                                             10am-Noon                                      Practice @Cole Harbour Place
                                                              1pm-2pm                                        Practice @Cole Harbour Place
August 23rd                                              10am-Noon                                      Practice @Cole Harbour Place
                                                               1pm-2pm                                       Practice @Cole Harbour Place

Pre-Season Schedule:

Saturday, August 18th                         7pm                                 Vs Cape Breton @Halifax Forum
Sunday, August 19th                           7pm                                 Vs Cape Breton @Cape Breton University (Sydney)
Friday, August 24th                             7pm                                 Vs Moncton @JK Irving Centre (Bouctouche)
Saturday, August 25th                         7pm                                 Vs Moncton @Acadia Arena (Wolfville)
Friday, September 7th                         7pm                                Vs Cape Breton @Emera Centre (North Sydney)
Sunday, September 9th                       4pm                                 Vs Cape Breton @Halifax Forum
Friday, September 14th                       7pm                                   Vs Saint John @Halifax Forum
Saturday, September 15th                   7pm                                  Vs Saint John @Harbour Station (Saint John)

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

PEI Rocket Training Camp Details Released

Press Release

Once again this year, camp will be held at the Pownal Sports Center until September 1, at which time it will move to the Charlottetown Civic Centre.

45 players arrive to camp on August 13 for fitness testing with on ice-sessions starting the next day.  Players will take to the ice each morning for work-outs and they will return to the ice at 2:00 each afternoon for controlled scrimmages.  The team’s first exhibition game is August 17, in Quispamsis, against the St.  John Seadogs.  The Seadogs make a return visit to Pownal the next day for a 2:00 start.

Coach Gordie Dwyer says although there is a good nucleus of returning players, camp will be competitive as everyone tries to earn their spot.  “We have a core group of returning guys that should have spots solidified but there are a number of spots with no guarantees.  I expect everyone to come to camp ready to compete.”  

Camp Schedule

Monday, August 13

12:00 Players check-in

3:00 to 6:00 Fitness Testing (Cari Complex)

Tuesday, August 14

9:00 to 12:15 On-ice workout

2:00 to 4:00 Team Red vs Team White

Wednesday, August 15

9:00 to 12:15 On-ice workout

2:00 to 4:00 Team Red vs Team White

Thursday, August 16

9:00 to 12:15 On-ice workout

2:00 to 4:00 Team Red vs Team White

Friday, August 17

9:00 to 10:00  Pre-game skate for those playing pre-season game

10:15 to 11:15  On-ice workout for players not playing

7:00  PEI Rocket vs Saint John Seadogs in Quispamasis, NB

Saturday, August 18

2:00  Saint John Seadogs vs PEI Rocket in Pownal, PEI

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Monday, July 30, 2012

Ludzik and Hishon Join Scouting Staff

Press Release

The Owen Sound Attack is pleased to announce that Steve Ludzik and Joe Hishon have joined the scouting staff for the 2012/2013 Ontario Hockey League season.

Ludzik, a former coach in the National Hockey League for the Tampa Bay Lightning and player for the Chicago Blackhawks and Buffalo Sabres will oversee the Niagara region for the Owen Sound Attack. Ludzik, 51, played Junior for the Niagara Falls Flyers which saw him gather an incredible 125 goals, 233 assists for 358 points.

Also added to the Attack scouting staff is Joe Hishon father of former Attack star Joey Hishon. Joe has spent many hours in rinks across MidWestern Ontario and currently resides in Stratford with his wife, Sue.

“We are extremely excited to add both Steve and Joe to our scouting staff.”, stated Dale DeGray. “It is of the utmost importance to our organization that we have dedicated staff in as many areas as possible to help ensure the best possible results in the Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection. Both of these men have been around the game for a long time and we look forward to having them in our organization.”

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

EVERETT SILVERTIPS: Extend Mitch Love’s Contract

Press Release

EVERETT – The Everett Silvertips have announced a two-year contract extension for Assistant Coach Mitch Love, who will once again join Head Coach Mark Ferner and fellow assistant Chris Hartsburg behind the Everett bench in 2012-13. The move keeps Everett’s coaching staff unchanged from last season and brings the term of Love’s contract in line with that of Coach Ferner.

Love, 28, is now set for a second year on Everett’s coaching staff during the club’s 10th Anniversary season. A member of the inaugural Silvertips squad back in 2003-04, he has been active with the organization throughout its history as a player, alumnus and now coach. He concluded his professional playing career to transition into coaching last summer.

“After observing the quality of our coaching staff and my discussions with Coach Ferner, it became very obvious that Mitch was deserving of a contract extension,” said Silvertips General Manager Garry Davidson. “I think he has aspirations of becoming a career coach and has already demonstrated qualities that will make him a very successful one in the years to come. Mitch has a long history with our organization and we’re happy to keep him on our staff.”

A native of Quesnel, BC, Love skated for the Silvertips during the club’s first two seasons in the WHL. He helped Everett set numerous expansion records and advance to the league finals in 2004, returning to serve as team captain the following year as an overager. After signing a free-agent NHL contract with the Colorado Avalanche, the 6-foot, 180-pound defenseman played five pro seasons in the American Hockey League and another in the Central Hockey League. He accumulated over 900 career penalty minutes and 30 points in 325 career games.

“I’m very excited to be staying with the Silvertips,” Love remarked. “This area has been home since my playing days in this organization, so it means a lot to me and my family to have an opportunity here. We’ve got a great staff and I’m looking forward to working with an exciting young group of players as we move forward to pursue our ultimate goal of winning a championship.”

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Estevan Bruins join up with Minor Hockey

Press Release

The Estevan Bruins and Estevan Minor Hockey Association are proud to announce that they have joined forces to host a paramount pre-season conditioning camp for athletes from Estevan and surrounding area.

This event will happen at Spectra Place over the course of two weeks during the evening hours from August 20th-23th and August 27th - August 30th. Each age group will be on the ice for one hour per night of hard core conditioning.  Athletes are able to register for one or both weeks and will be registered on a first come first serve bases. Registration deadline is August 13th.  Times will be approximately between the hours of 6:30-10pm and will be emailed out to the athletes one week prior to the clinic.

Highlighting this year’s program will be the involvement of the Estevan Bruins coaching staff.  Head Coach Keith Cassidy and Assistant Coach Cole Zahn will bring their extensive coaching backgrounds and experience to the ice each session, and are looking forward to working with and preparing young athletes for the coming season.

“Joining up with the Estevan Bruins is a win-win situation for both parties” said EMHA President, Kelly Kjersem. “We have a strong relationship with the Estevan Bruins Hockey Club and look forward to working with them to develop young athletes into strong character individuals”

The Estevan Bruins will be organizing the clinic with input from the EMHA Board. At the end of the event, the net profit will then be turned over to EMHA.

Registration forms can be picked up at the Estevan Bruins Office.

For more information or to have a registration form emailed to you please contact:

Becky Tait                   or                        Lesley Mittelholtz
Estevan Bruins                                       EMHA
(306) 421-9450                                      (306) 636-2685
becky.tait@estevanbruins.com              lmitts@sasktel.net     

 (Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Cents Unveil 40th Anniversary Season Logo

Press Release

The Merritt Centennials of the BC Hockey League released officially today their 40th anniversary logo, which the team will use throughout the 2012-13 season as it celebrates its 40th consecutive season of junior 'A' hockey in the Nicola Valley.

The logo will be seen on the Cents jerseys, its marketing materials and throughout various digital media platforms during the upcoming season.

The logo consists of the Centennials primary logo, with the base overlapping a sprawling white ribbon with the number 40 on the left side and the word "years" on the right side, with the BCHL logo in the middle. Below the white ribbon is a smaller red ribbon with the words, "Established 1973" to commemorate the 1973-74 season that the franchise was moved from White Rock to Merritt. The anniversary logo will be on the shoulder of the Centennials jerseys for the 2012-13 season.

The Cents 40th season will see the return of several favorite faces throughout the year as previous players will be remembered and incorporated. The Centennials invite all of the Nicola Valley to be a part of their 40th Anniversary season beginning in September.

“This is a milestone season for the Centennials organization and given its rich history and tradition, one we’re excited to celebrate,” said Cents Media & Communications Coordinator Brian Wiebe, who helped design the logo along with the staff at Merritt Printing. “The Cents have accomplished some wonderful things over the years, both on and off the ice, and there are so many individuals in our community - past and present - who deserve credit.”

Wiebe added, “Reflecting on how far our storied franchise has come over four decades, it’s amazing to think what began as a group of Merritt businessmen - Jim Flux, Len Pare, Bill Pooley, John Mulvey and Don Dewinetz - purchasing the White Rock Centennials in January of 1974 has evolved into what is today the longest continuously run team in the BC Hockey League and, more importantly, one of the most revered thanks to the efforts of those early pioneers."

The Centennials 40th regular season commences on Saturday, Sept. 8th.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Express forward Nardi commits to Lake Superior State

Press Release

Another NCAA Division I school that didn't roster a BCHL graduate last season has changed that for the coming season.

Coquitlam Express forward Mitch Nardi has inked with Lake Superior State University. The Lakers have not carried a BCHL-developed player in several seasons. Nardi's commitment comes shortly after Dexter Dancs of the Penticton Vees agreed to attend the University of Michigan, who also did not have a BCHL alum on their roster last season.

Nardi, a native of Hamilton, Ont., registered 14 goals and 30 assists in 56 games last year for the Express. The 6-foot, 180-pound centre finished seventh in team scoring and also posted 52 minutes in penalties.

The 19-year-old is one of five Express players slated to return to the lineup who finished in the top-seven in team scoring last year.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

McPhail named to USA Developmental Sled Team

Press Release

Ezra McPhail, a 20-year-old forward from Antigo, Wis., suffered an incomplete spinal cord injury playing in a game for the Granite City Lumberjacks at the 3HL Showcase on Dec. 6 in Darien, Ill.

The next step in his hockey career has taken an uplifting and dramatic turn as USA Hockey announced the players selected for the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team and the U.S. National Development Sled Hockey Team. McPhail, who began playing sled hockey in the Spring, was named to the U.S. National Development Sled Hockey Team.  All players that participated in the Sled Select Camp and the National Team try-outs should be congratulated as this year was one of the toughest for the coaching staff to make their selections.
He learned how to play sled hockey in March, which provides opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in hockey.  Players sit in sleds and there are two sticks for each player instead of one and the sticks have metal picks on the butt end for players to propel themselves in sled hockey.

“I’m still learning,” McPhail said. “I started playing as soon as I could with the Minnesota Northern team, which is made up of adults 18 and older. Some of the players have been playing for five years and they’re teach me a lot.  “I’ve learned a lot about turning and stopping."

But McPhail said that playing with the Northern is a great experience.  “I love it,” said McPhail,  “I haven’t had so much fun skating since (Granite City) won the Bush Cup (last season).  “It was just a blast.”

After he was injured, McPhail was in a Chicago hospital before transferring to Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute in Minneapolis. McPhail, whose dream was to play college hockey, spent about 3 1/2 weeks there as he worked on learning to walk again.

To see the entire roster, click here.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Slammers Training Camp Schedule

Press Release

The Woodstock Slammers will be opening training camp on August 25th, details of the schedule are below. Visit the Training camp video at:  http://youtu.be/OAysV9ixv4I
Complete Training Camp Schedule:
August 24th
6:00 PM
Community RM
8:00 PM
Game 1
August 25th
8:30 AM
Community RM
11:00 AM
Game 2
2:00 PM
Community RM
 7:00 PM
Game 3
August 26th
1:00 PM
Game 4
 Training Camp roster will
Rbe reduced after the  
Sunday game
August 27th
Main Camp

 (Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Recently acquired d-man Urban to wear 'C' for Grizz

Press Release

The Victoria Grizzlies Hockey Club is pleased to announce that veteran BCHL defenceman and RBC Champion Zach Urban has been named team captain for the 2012 -2013 season.

Grizzlies general manager and head coach Bill Bestwick today introduced Urban to the community and Victoria media at an event at the Grizzlies’ Bear Mountain Arena.

“The appointment of a captain is one of the most important decisions we will make. Zach is a perfect fit and his experience, winning attitude, work ethic and knowing what it takes to win makes him a natural,” said Bestwick.

Urban is entering his third season of BCHL competition and was a defensive stalwart on the blue line for the BCHL record-setting Penticton Vees. Last season, he played in 58 regular season games and every game of the playoffs, contributing four goals and 18 assists, with 88 penalty minutes.

The 19-year-old Kelowna native measures in at 6’ 3" and 205 lbs, and is described as a 'fearless competitor' with a 'team first' approach to the game.

Urban will be heavily counted on for his leadership on and off the ice and looks forward to getting started.

“I am very honoured to be chosen to captain this team and play in a Grizzlies uniform. I am excited for the challenge to lead this hockey club on and off the ice,” said Urban.

“Zach is a champion," added Bestwick. "He is a character player, hard nosed and gritty. I am certain his work ethic and expectations will positively influence his teammates and make him a fan favorite."

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Buzzers 80th Anniversary Team's New Captain

Press Release

Toronto- The Buzzers enter the franchises 80th Anniversary year with a new captain, 1994 Defenceman Patrick McCarron. General Manager Rich Ricci had these comments..

"I am pleased to announce Patrick as our new captain. At a very young age, Patrick understood the privilege of being a Buzzer. He is a second generation Buzzer and a product of St. Michael's College School and the high school teams. Patrick has grown as a player from when I first saw him about 6-7 years ago. He has developed into a pro prospect and All Star. I expect he will gain alot of attention this year with NHL scouts and with the Hockey Canada program. Patrick will be attending Cornell in the fall of 2013 and will fit in nicely with their tremendous program. As a person Patrick has matured into the consumate teammate and leader. He follows a long line of tremendous Buzzer captains."

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)


Press Release

The Ontario Junior Hockey League today released its 2012-13 regular season schedule and announced that the Cobourg Cougars will host the 2012 OJHL Governors’ Showcase Weekend.

The OJHL schedule consists of 633 games, featuring 23 teams playing within their newly re-aligned conferences (North-East & South-West Conferences). Each club will play a 55 game regular season schedule that is weighted by conference play only, not divisional.

Highlights of the schedule include:

• Opening night is Friday, September 7, 2012, with four games on the agenda, taking place in Markham, Oakville, Pickering and St. Michael’s.

• The Stouffville Spirit will celebrate their 2012 championship season during their home opener on Sunday, September 9 vs. the Kingston Voyageurs.

• Annual Governors’ Showcase to be held in Cobourg, Ontario from October 12-14, 2012.

• The 2012 World Junior ‘A’ Challenge will be played from November 5-11 in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, featuring Team Canada East, led by Georgetown Raiders head coach Greg Walters.

• A special announcement will come later this summer regarding the OJHL host of the 2nd Annual Central Canada Cup All-Star Challenge.

• The Buffalo Jr. Sabres will host the Oakville Blades at the First Niagara Center, home of the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres, on Wednesday, February 20, 2013.

• The regular season ends on Saturday, February 23, 2013 with playoffs beginning that week.

“The 2012-13 Ontario Junior Hockey League season promises to be one of the most exciting in the history of the league,” stated OJHL Commissioner Marty Savoy. “With the reduction in membership to 23 clubs, the competition will prove to be the most intense in recent memory and should provide our fans with some of the most entertaining Junior ‘A’ calibre hockey in the country.”

Following the unprecedented success of last year’s Governors’ Showcase weekend in Cobourg, the Cougars will once again play host to an exciting weekend of hockey that allows all 23 OJHL clubs to play in one facility, in front of scouts from all levels of the game.

“The Cobourg Cougars are proud to be hosting the Governors' Showcase for a second consecutive year,” stated Cobourg Governor and OJHL Vice-Chair Marc Mercier. “We have an incredible facility to host an event of this magnitude and have a volunteer base that is among the best in Canada.”

Mercier continued by saying, “While the showcase is an important way for the OJHL to showcase its players and assist them as they move toward achieving opportunities to play at higher levels of play, it is a great way to showcase the wonderful community and local merchants of Cobourg and the extended Northumberland County community. Feedback received from scouts at last year's showcase indicated that Cobourg has all of the amenities and is well-placed for accessibility purposes.”

For the full 2012-13 schedule, please CLICK HERE.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Jr. Blades Graduate Trio to Kingston‏

Press Release

Estero, Fla.-- The Kingston Voyageurs have signed a trio of talent from the Florida Jr. Blades of the Empire Junior Hockey League. The American journeymen, Ross Kovacs, Blake O’Neill and J.P. Larmoyeux, will travel to Canada to showcase their skills.

The 2011-2012 record-setting Florida Jr. Blades has three graduates heading to Kingston for the up coming season. “We push players to their limits and then some with intense on and off ice workouts,” said Jr. Blades head coach and general manager Tad O’Had. “I know they’re ready for the next level because in Florida the rigors and training these guys go through will break them if they aren’t true hockey players.”

Former Jr. Blades J.P. Larmoyeux, Blake O’Neill and Ross Kovacs will be heading to Canada to join the Kingston Voyageurs of the Ontario Junior Hockey League (OJHL). The OJHL represents one of the finest Tier II Jr. A programs in North America and is a suitable place for the talented Jr. Blades graduates.

Kovacs, a 6-foot-3 defender from Dickinson, North Dakota anchored the Jr. Blades blue line and is known for his composure on and off the ice. An Empire League All-Star and NAHL draftee he joins Jr. Blades teammate Blake O’Neill in defending the Voyageurs defensive end. “The OJHL is a high level league that has had a lot of success placing its players to the next level,” said Kovacs. “Kingston is a rich hockey town with a tradition of winning I am really looking forward to stepping on the ice and showcasing my abilities.”

Fellow teammate Blake O’Neill is a talented ‘94 defender with a large offensive upside. “I like to be responsible for the puck, but when I see an opportunity I take it,” said O’Neill. “Sometimes you get an opportunity with a bad change or someone gets a little lazy. That’s when I’m dangerous.” Opportunities presented themselves for O’Neill who recorded 12 goals and 20 assists in 39 games for the Jr. Blades.

When looking for offensive output the Voyageurs didn’t have far to go. J.P. Larmoyeux played along side both Kovacs and O’Neill for the 2011-12 season. Larmoyeux recorded 79 points (31g, 48a) in 40 games for the Jr. Blades during their campaign. Known as a talented playmaker the 6-foot-1 forward from West Palm, Fla. is fully prepared for the season ahead. "I am looking forward to seeing what I can achieve up north,” said Larmoyeux. “Kingston is such a great hockey town and I am looking forward to playing against tougher competition. It's gonna be a blast facing off against the Cougars I have been spending the past two years trying to score on Keyser in practice and it will be nice to do it in front of the home crowd."

The winning attitude, training and quality of development appealed to coaches in Kingston. "I am really impressed with the Florida Jr. Blades program. In terms of structure, dedication and development it's as good as any development program I have seen on either side of the border,” said Colin Birkas, head coach of the Kingston Voyageurs. “The players have access to a great facility, staff and instruction. It is clear that coach O'Had's players graduate ready for the next level, whether it be Juniors or College.”

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Hall of Famer to Golf with Clippers

Press Release

The Nanaimo Clippers are excited to announce that Hockey Hall of Fame Legend Lanny McDonald will join us at our 40th Anniversary Kelly Hrudey Golf Tournament. Hosted by Cottonwood Golf Course the tournament is scheduled for Friday, August 10th 2012.
Playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs, Colorado Rockies and Calgary Flames, Lanny McDonald played over 1100 games during a 16-year NHL career in which he scored 500 goals and accumulated 1100  points. His total of 66 goals in 1982-83 remains the Flames' franchise record.
"It will be a fantastic day of golf complimented by a good dose of hockey talk with two greats.  We are thrilled that both Kelly and Lanny are giving their time to help us celebrate our 40th Anniversary." Commented Jen Kennedy, Clippers Director of Marketing.
Registration forms including those for sponsorship can be downloaded below.


See you on the course!

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Friday, July 27, 2012

Bandits Governor Moving On

Press Release

After 13 years of volunteer service with the Brooks Bandits long time Governor Byron Smith has stepped down.

Byron was instrumental in uniting a group of investors to form the founding fathers in 1999 and followed that up by lending his hand as the team's first President. The Bandits have been through their fair share of ups and downs over the past 13 years but through the hard work and dedication of Byron Smith the team was able to survive and succeed. Byron has always been a strong and positive supporter of the club and it is most fitting that he moves on after the Bandits achieved their first AJHL Championship this past year. Byron will now have the luxury of being a fan and continuing to support the team from a birds' eye view.

With Byron's departure, outgoing President Paul Seaton will assume the role of Governor after serving the past six years as Alternate Governor. Former Vice-President Dave Hemsing moves into the Presidency and will now also serve as Alternate Governor. The Bandits have also appointed Noel Moriyama to act as a liaison between the organization and the AJHL's hockey operations. This is a new position that will give strength to the team's day to day operation.

Paul Seaton has also been named to the AJHL's Management Committee. This is the first time in 12 seasons that the Bandits are represented at the league level and this will give them the opportunity to serve as leaders in the development of the AJHL. This is a three year term that will see the team represented until 2015.

As an organization we are proud to have had one of the longest serving Governors in the AJHL. Everyone involved with the Bandits would like to thank Byron for not only serving as Governor but making this all possible through his work 13 years ago

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

T-Birds Add Peter Anholt To Scouting Staff

Press Release

KENT, July 26, 2012 — Seattle Thunderbirds general manager Russ Farwell today announced the team has added Peter Anholt to the scouting staff.

“Peter will concentrate on the player pool already drafted or already playing in the WHL,” said Farwell. “We have an excellent group of scouts in place. Peter will be a good fit with our group and allow us to do a more in depth evaluation of the current WHL player pool.”

Anholt was head coach of the T-Birds for three seasons, from 1989 to 1991. He compiled a 127-77-12 coaching record. Anholt was a scout with the Red Deer Rebels last season covering Saskatchewan.

The T-Birds have also added Ross Patterson in a similar position to add coverage to the province of Alberta. Patterson has been involved in Calgary minor hockey for several years.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Eagles welcome Brendan Batchelor as the new Director of Media Relations

Press Release

The Surrey Eagles are very pleased to announce the hiring of Brendan Batchelor as the team’s Director of Media Relations and play-by-play broadcaster for the coming season.

A native of Coquitlam, Batchelor was a minor hockey player and official throughout his childhood. After graduating from high school, he attended the British Columbia Institute of Technology, graduating with distinction from the Broadcast and Media Communications – Broadcast Journalism program. He spent the last three seasons as the public address announcer for the Coquitlam Express and currently works as an announcer and reporter at TEAM Radio Vancouver. He will continue his duties at the radio station in addition to his new role with the Eagles.

“This is a very exciting opportunity for me,” said Batchelor. “I’m thrilled to be joining an organization that has a reputation for excelling both on and off the ice, and I can’t wait for the season to begin.”

Batchelor replaces Colin Tiggelaar who left the Eagles at the conclusion of the 2011-2012 season.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)


Press Release

Moose Jaw, SK--- The Moose Jaw Warriors Director of Business Operations announced today the hiring of Peter Iatridis and James Gallo to the Warriors business team.

Peter, a Moose Jaw native, joins the tribe as the teams new Manager, Sales & Marketing after spending the past 7 years in Athens, Greece, as the brand manager for Black and White Licensing, overseeing corporate client accounts and executing corporate contracts. During his time in Athens, Peter played for the Greek National Hockey team, claiming a silver medal at the World Championships in 2010. Pete played a key role in marketing the National Team and securing corporate sponsorships for the club during his 6 year tenure.

James joins the squad this year as the Warriors Manager, Communications & Broadcasting. Hailing from Strasbourg, SK, Gallo has been a part of Moose Jaw Warriors coverage for Golden West Radio in Moose Jaw for over 12 years. He has been the "Voice" of the Moose Jaw Warriors for the previous six seasons. James will continue his role as the Warriors Play by Play announcer will call his 500th Moose Jaw Warriors game this season.

“We are extremely pleased to be able to welcome these two individuals to the Warriors family.” stated Warriors Business Director, Corey Nyhagen. “James has been an integral part of the club for many seasons through broadcasts, events and Warriors TV and Peters experience in marketing and corporate relationships will enable us to continue to provide new and exciting opportunities for our corporate and fan community.” He added.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Mississauga Steelheads Unveil Home and Away Jerseys

Press Release

Mississauga, ONT – With the hockey season fast approaching, the Mississauga Steelheads of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) are proud to release their highly anticipated home and away jerseys for the 2012-2013 season. After releasing the official team colours last month, the final layer to the Steelheads brand is now in place. Following an approval process with the National Hockey League (NHL), the team is proud to wear the iconic Blue and White Leafs jerseys for the upcoming season.

Staying true to the Toronto Maple Leafs Blue and White, the Steelheads will be wearing the traditional “Leafs look” from head to toe for the 2012-2013 season. In addition to the Steelheads team logo, the jerseys will feature a secondary logo which will be the shoulder patch on both the home and away jerseys. The “M” depicts the Port Credit light house with protruding beams of light, paying homage to one of the City’s most recognizable landmarks.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Fargo Exhibition Game vs Sioux Falls Stampede

Press Release

The Fargo Force have announced that they will play an exhibition game versus the Sioux Falls Stampede on Friday, Sept. 14 at 7:35 PM at Scheels Arena. This is the first time that an exhibition game has been hosted at Scheels Arena in the team’s history. An exhibition game was hosted in the 2008-09 inaugural season at the Moorhead Sports Center. There will be a skate with the Force following the game where fans will get an early opportunity to meet the team.

Tickets will be $5 for any reserved seat and club seats will be available for $10 with season ticket holders and youth (12 and under) getting in for free to the game. The tickets will go on sale the same day as 2012-13 single game tickets on Monday, Aug. 27 at 11 AM. Tickets will be available by stopping at the Scheels Arena box office, calling 701.364.3672 or through Ticketmaster by calling 800.745.3000 or online at ticketmaster.com.

Season tickets for the Fargo Force are currently on sale. Fans should contact Trevor at 701.356.7658 for more information.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)


Press Release

PENTICTON, BC– The Penticton Vees Hockey Club has acquired defenseman James De Haas (94) from the Toronto Lakeshore Patriots, for the rights of forward Mike Sones (92).

De Haas played 45 games in 2011-2012, where he collected 10 goals, 29 points and 32 Penalty-Minutes. In 21 playoff games, De Haas accumulated five goals and 12 points, helping the Patriots to a Conference Championship appearance. The 18 year-old was drafted this past June by the Detroit Red Wings in the sixth round, 170th overall. De Haas is committed for Clarkson University, for the fall of 2013.

Vees Head Coach and GM Fred Harbinson says De Haas is someone the Vees had on their radar for a while, “We’ve been hard at work on this deal for quite some time. James has all the tools, size, quick feet and smart puck moving ability. We are very fortunate to add a player with James skill set and determination.”

Clarkson University is located in Potsdam, New York and play in the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference in NCAA Division l Hockey. The Golden Knights have made 20 NCAA postseason appearances, winning five ECAC tournament titles and 10 regular-season championships in their 90 year history. Former Vee, Ben Sexton will captain the Golden Knights in 2012-2013. Notable NHL alumni include Erik Cole and Willie Mitchell, both Stanley Cup Champions.

De Haas checks in a 6’3 and 200 lbs. adding more size to the Vees blue-line. The De Haas trade comes on the heels of another acquisition, where the Vees added another sizable defenseman Rob Mann, from the Markham Waxers.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Winterhawks Sign Radio Contract With KPAM 860

Press Release

The Portland Winterhawks have expanded the Winterhawks Radio Network to include KPAM 860 AM with a multi-year contract to broadcast the team’s games on the radio station.

KPAM will broadcast all Winterhawks regular season and playoff games live, with a few exceptions when the team plays daytime games. The Winterhawks will also be featured prominently on Northwest Sports Tonight, the station’s nightly sports show hosted by Ron Callan. The Winterhawks will have a weekly hour-long show on Northwest Sports Tonight, which airs live from 6 - 9 p.m. on weeknights, that will feature interviews with players, coaches and management, with fans able to call in and interact with the team.

“Bringing our games to KPAM will give us tremendous local coverage on over-the-air radio. KPAM is a Portland institution with excellent signal strength,” said Winterhawks President Doug Piper. “We’re also excited about the exclusive programming we’ll continue to have available on the Winterhawks Radio Network. We received tremendous feedback on the network last year and we look forward to taking it to even greater heights this season.”

“We’re extremely excited to be the exclusive radio home for the Portland Winterhawks, as it doesn’t get any more local and heritage than this for our valued AM 860 listeners,” said KPAM Program Director Dennis Glasgow. “Winterhawks Nation now has a strong radio home where they can count on hearing each and every game on multiple listening platforms, which benefits all hockey fans and the Portland Winterhawks organization.”

The contract with KPAM adds to the content already available through the Winterhawks Radio Network, the dedicated online radio feed available at winterhawks.com and via smartphone apps. The Winterhawks Radio Network will continue to broadcast all games, along with exclusive interviews, podcasts and shows for fans eager for more team-related content 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Press Release

Victoria, BC – The Victoria Royals are proud to announce that they have signed a three-year agreement with BC Hockey in conjunction with the South Island Royals.

The deal will see the former South Island Thunderbirds renamed and rebranded as the South Island Royals. The agreement will allow the Royals to develop players in the Victoria and Southern Vancouver Island region for future participation in the WHL.

“We are very pleased to have partnered with BC Hockey,” General Manager Cameron Hope said. “Helping in the development of hockey players from the South Island is one of the priorities of our organization. This partnership allows us to have an impactful presence with the South Island Royals by having a member of our coaching staff serve as the team’s head coach. It’s a part of our commitment to building a successful program for the Royals and a strong and lasting relationship with BC Hockey.”

The direct link between the two clubs will be through the assignment of one of the WHL Royals’ assistant coaches to the head coaching role of the South Island Royals. The WHL team and its staff will also serve to mentor staff and team officials of South Island, and when possible participate in player development training sessions and practices. The agreement will also allow for cross participation between the two clubs when it comes to on-ice and off-ice sessions, allowing the WHL Royals to take part in South Island practices as part of injury rehabilitation and skill development.

“BC Hockey is excited by our partnership agreement with the Victoria Royals. It will enhance our offerings to the players in the South Island Region, giving them the opportunity to develop at an elite level and play out of a Major Junior facility in the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre.” said Major Midget League Chair Randy Henderson.

The Major Midget Royals will practice and play out of the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre to ensure there is minimal conflictions between the two clubs. Beyond the coaching and on-ice benefits the South Island Royals will also receive other unique opportunities and services including the use of the Royals’ Fitness and Training Facility on occasion, a dedicated dressing room when available, internet management, media relations and other resources that the WHL team can provide.

The BC Hockey Major Midget League provides elite level competition for 15, 16 and 17-year-old players in the province of British Columbia. It also provides players with the necessary development to play at the Western Hockey League, Junior A and Junior B levels of hockey. Each team has the opportunity to compete for the National Midget Championship.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Winterhawks Sign Oliver Bjorkstrand

Press Release

The Portland Winterhawks have signed Oliver Bjorkstrand, a Danish forward selected 26th overall by the team in the 2012 Canadian Hockey League Import Draft.

Bjorkstrand played last season with the Herning Blue Fox of the Danish professional league and totaled 13 goals and 13 assists for 26 points in 36 games, helping lead his team to the league championship. He led all 16-year-olds in the league in scoring, with the next closest player his age registering five points.

Bjorkstrand also represented Denmark at the 2012 World Junior Championship and tallied two goals in the tournament, and played for the national team at the 2012 Under-18 World Championship where he registered seven points in six games.

“Oliver is a top international player in his age group and we’re excited that he has chosen to play in Portland next year. He is ready for the challenge of the Western Hockey League,” said Portland Winterhawks General Manager & Head Coach Mike Johnston.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Samuel St-Pierre on the QMJHL's Technical Commission

Press Release

Samuel St-Pierre was named today to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Technical Commission. This appointment endorsed by the league’s management will be an asset in relying on the expertise of a former QMJHL player. The Technical Commission is composed of individuals—independent of the QMJHL—mandated to define the guidelines of the players’ Individualized Development Program (IDP) and make recommendations to the League’s board.

St-Pierre played in the QMJHL for three seasons, for the Victoriaville Tigres and the Drummondville Voltigeurs where he was also captain. During his junior career he scored 96 goals and made 63 assists for a total of 159 points in 198 games.

At 17, he got drafted by the Tampa-Bay Lightning in the NHL and was signed to a three year contract with the team. He began his professional career playing for the Detroit Vipers in the IHL. The following season, he played one season in the ECHL with the Johnstown Chiefs before heading to Europe for three years where he played with teams in Norway and Germany. For the past 10 years, he’s been organizing a golf tournament which has raised $75 000 for minor hockey in Plessisville, where he currently resides.

The other members of the Technical Commission are : Yves Archambault, Michel Boucher, André Fournier, Gérard Gagnon, Wayne Halliwell and Allan Power. Marcel Patenaude, QMJHL Executive Vice-President is the coordinator on the Commission and Dr. George Larivière, a well known personality in the world of hockey, is the president.

About the Individualized Development Programme (IDP)
  • Implement a methodical and rigorous follow-up of players’ integral development while ensuring their health and safety.
  • Coordinate and improve player supervision by QMJHL teams.
  • Upgrade the tools used to control and evaluate player potential.
  • Develop a player «digital» file.
  • Organize an annual development camp for players eligible for the NHL Entry Draft.
  • Create a strategy to promote the talent of QMJHL players.
  • Maintain internal and external communications, mainly with Hockey Quebec and the different branches of Hockey Canada within the QMJHL’s territory.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

NAHL adds HPHL to NAHL Showcase line-up

Press Release

The North American Hockey League (NAHL) is pleased to announce that all six teams from the High Performance Hockey League’s (HPHL) 18U Division have been invited to and will compete in the 10th annual Combat Hockey/NAHL Showcase Tournament, held September 12-16, 2012, at the Schwan Super Rink in Blaine, Minnesota.

The six teams from the HPHL will join 24 teams from the North American Hockey League (NAHL), 36 teams from the North American Prospects Hockey League (PHL) and 8 teams from the Upper Midwest High School Elite League (UMHSEL) complete the five-day, 74-team showcase event. Each HPHL 18U team will play five games during the NAHL Showcase.

“We believe the addition of the teams from the High Performance Hockey League will just add yet another competitive element to an already tremendous Showcase line-up,” said NAHL Commissioner and President Mark Frankenfeld. “With four different leagues playing under one roof, we believe that the partnership will be nothing but a positive for the thousands of players, scouts and fans that will be in attendance.”

The annual NAHL Showcase is the most well-attended, largest and heavily scouted hockey festivals of its kind in all of North America, and the addition of the HPHL further enhances the event’s reach and scope in the hockey landscape.

“The NAHL puts on one of the premier hockey events of the season with hundreds of scouts attending from across North America. We feel this opportunity ties into our mission and see the event as a jump start to our season,” said HPHL Director Gino Cavallini. “There is no doubt the exposure the event promotes is invaluable and clearly a must place to be. We are thrilled to be able to offer players in the HPHL this sort of showcase.”

Traditionally, the NAHL Showcase Tournament attracts over 9,000 people in overall attendance, including more than 250 professional, college and junior scouts. For more information on the Combat Hockey/NAHL Showcase, visit www.nahlshowcase.com

About the HPHL
The HPHL is a collaboration of six high-profile AAA hockey organizations that formed a Tier I amateur hockey league during the 2011-12 season that competes with both a Boys and Girls division. The member clubs are: Chicago Mission, Chicago Young Americans, Detroit Compuware, Detroit Honey Baked, Detroit Little Caesars and Team Illinois. The League was created to bring together organizations of like mindedness, notably a philosophical commitment to USA Hockey’s American Development Model (ADM) and its Long Term Athlete Development (LTAD) recommendations which includes age-specific development of young athletes. The clubs are connected by history, purpose, and proximity, and bound by a mutual interest in creating a highly competitive training and developmental environment. In 2011-12, 13 HPHL teams competed in the USA Hockey National Championships at all three divisions, including Peewee Major – Chicago Mission and Detroit Compuware, Midget Minor – Chicago Mission and Detroit Honey Baked, Midget Major – Detroit Little Caesars. Nine players with HPHL ties were selected in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Coach Rhindress Named Assistant Coach for Team Atlantic

Press Release

Lumberjacks Head Coach/General Manager Terry Rhindress has been named Assistant Coach of Team Atlantic U17. Team Atlantic will participate in the U17 World Challenge to be held in Victoriaville/Drummondville, PQ on the 28th of December.

Teams that will participate in this event are from Sweden, Czech, USA, Russia and five teams from across Canada. The Lumberjacks would like to wish the Coach Rhindress best of luck, as well as local player Alex Mann who is trying out for the U17 Team Atlantic. Alex was a territorial pick of the Lumbejacks at the 2012 draft.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Wildcats Announce Second Wave of Invitees

Press Release

Moncton, NB – The Moncton Wildcats have announced the following four free agents have been invited to training camp:

Grant Grady: 17, 6’00” 165lbs goalie from Cornwall Midget AAA

Regan Spears: 17, 6’03” 175lbs forward from Cape Breton West Midget AAA 34 games, 9G, 11A, 20PTS, 51PIMS

Travis Howe: 18, 6’04” 215lbs defenseman from Falmouth High School in Falmouth, MA.

Jake Primeau: 18, 6’04” 205lbs defenseman from Arnprior (Ontario Jr B) 31 games, 6G 12A 18PTS 47PIMS

The Moncton Wildcats open training camp August 15th at the Red Ball Internet Center with their first exhibition game scheduled for August 18th against the Acadie-Bathurst Titan at the Red Ball Internet Center at 7PM.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Wildcats to play in Bouctouche

Press Release

The Moncton Wildcats are pleased to announce that they will be hosting the Halifax Mooseheads at 7PM on Friday, August 24th at the brand new JK Irving Center in Bouctouche New Brunswick. This will be the Wildcats 3rd exhibition game of the pre-season against a team that went to the 3rd round of playoffs last season.

“A lot of people from Bouctouche and Kent County are Wildcats fans and very excited to be able to experience a game right here in our brand new arena” said Daniel Allain the Manager of the J. K. Irving Center. “This will be great for the young kids in minor hockey to experience this level of hockey at home.”

Tickets are $10 for an Adult and $8 for Student/Senior and on sale now online through the J.K Irving Center website here: http://bit.ly/LNpY4Z

This is the first time that the Wildcats have played a game in Bouctouche and look forward to it being a spirited affair between two rivals. The Wildcats are excited to showcase all of the new talent that has joined the team through the draft with two new European standouts Ivan Barbashev and Dmitrij Jaskin. Also joining the team are three players to complete the Gormley trade coming from Memorial Cup Champion Shawinigan Cataracts: Alex Dubeau, Jonathan Racine and Yannick Veilleux. Local veteran players Allain and Alex Saulnier from Cape Pele will also be on hand.

The J. K. Irving Center is a $20.4 Million Dollar facility that is state of the art with geothermal heating and cooling. It has a seating capacity of 1084 and a total capacity of 1500. It also houses the Town Hall, a public gym and a 3000 square foot multi-purpose center.

Season Tickets are now on sale and information can be found at www.moncton-wildcats.com

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)


Press Release

The Yorkton Terriers are pleased to announce that Tyler Paturel will be joining the hockey club for the upcoming 2012-13 hockey season as the teams Athletic Trainer/Equipment Manager. Tyler is a graduate from Concordia University in Montreal where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science Specialization in Athletic Therapy. He has also recently completed the Canadian Athletic Therapists Association certification exam.

During his time at Concordia University Tyler interned with the University Football team for two seasons. He also has worked with the Laurier Senior High Schools Rugby teams as well as the Lac St-Louis Midget AAA Lions hockey team.

Tyler currently resides in Margaree, Nova Scotia and will be moving to the city of Yorkton in late August to join the Terriers for the beginning of their Fall Training Camp on September 1st, 2012.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

'Backs Move Nicholishen to Nipawin

Press Release

The Salmon Arm SilverBacks are busy on the trade front again, moving forward Stefan Nicholishen to the SJHL's Nipawin Hawks in return for future considerations.

Nicholishen, a 19 year old Penticton native who is a former member of both the Penticton Vees and West Kelowna Warriors; notched four goals and three assists over 46 games with the SilverBacks in 2011-2012.

The 'Backs would like to thank Stefan for his efforts with the organization over the past year while wishing him the best of luck as he continues his Junior 'A' career and moves on to College.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Kings acquire forward Jordan Larson

Press Release

Pembroke Lumber Kings General Manager and Head Coach Sheldon Keefe announced today that the club has acquired 17 year old centre Jordan Larson from the Fort Frances Lakers of the Superior International Junior Hockey League (SIJHL).

As a 16 year old rookie last season Larson finished fifth in league scoring with 34 goals and 35 assists for 69 points in 56 games which earned him Rookie of the Year honours in the SIJHL. He carried his regular season success into the playoffs where he scored 14 points in 15 games to put him into a tie for 2nd overall in playoff scoring through a run that ended with a loss in game 7 of the league finals.

Larson, a 5’10 180 pound forward from Fort Frances, Ontario represented Team West last season in the Canadian Junior Hockey League’s Top Prospects Game in Langley, BC where he scored in each game of the 2 game series defeating Team East which was coached by Keefe and featured Pembroke forwards Ben Dalpe and Chris King. Larson also attended the final camp of Team Canada West for the 2011 World Junior A Challenge.

Prior to his first year of junior hockey Larson skated in 2010-11 for the Thunder Bay Kings Minor Midgets where he led his team with 86 points in 59 games and was drafted by the OHL’s Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds.

With training camp set to open on August 17th, Keefe is excited to get started and commented on the newest addition:

“Jordan is an offensive player that has produced at every level he’s played and once he adjusts to the pace of our league I believe he will make an impact here as well. He has a bright future and at just 17 he fits our plan of adding some high end young talent as we look to rebuild our team.”

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Kings make seven player swap with Cumberland

Press Release

Pembroke Lumber Kings General Manager and Head Coach Sheldon Keefe announced today that the club has completed a seven player trade with the Cumberland Grads that sees three players coming to the Kings in Defensemen Phil Drouin and Keegan Harper along with Forward Scott Conroy, a Pembroke native. Going to the Grads are forwards Trevor Packard, Chris King, Justin Pelock and Connor Currie who was drafted by the Kings in May.

"This trade today alleviates the surplus of forwards we had and at the same time addresses a major void in our defense providing some added depth with experienced players and a true offensive defenseman in Drouin which is something we lacked last season." Said Keefe. "Drouin`s point totals are almost double what we had from any one defenseman last season. He along with Keegan Harper gives us the offensive boost and stability on the back end that you need to have in order to compete against top teams in this league."

Drouin, an 18 year old from Orleans, Ontario is committed to attend NCAA Division 1 Mercyhurst University in the fall of 2013 and of all returning CCHL defensemen he lists second overall with 41 points in 61 games including 5 goals and 17 assists on the power play.

Harper, 19, is a left handed shot defenseman from Nepean, Ontario and was drafted to the OHL`s Erie Otters in 2009. Last season he scored five goals and added 15 assists for 20 points in 53 games with the Grads.

Conroy, 18, is a product of Pembroke Minor Hockey and the Upper Ottawa Valley Aces where he played before leading the Renfrew Timberwolves Junior B`s in scoring last season. He was named the 2011-2012 EOJHL Valley Division Rookie of the Year with 22 goals and 30 assists for 52 points in 42 games and also added a goal and an assist with the Kings in four games as an affiliate player before being drafted by Cumberland in the Spring.

"Conroy got away from us at the draft this year so we are pleased to be able to bring him back and with the local players that have moved on it`s nice to have him in the mix of guys to compete for a spot this season." commented Keefe.

The Lumber Kings would like to wish Trevor Packard, Chris King and Justin Pelock all the best in the future and thank them for all their hard work and dedication during their time in Pembroke.

Kings fans can get their first glimpse of the new additions when training camp opens August 17th at the Pembroke and Area Community Centre.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)


Press Release

The Yorkton Terriers have sent 20-year-old goaltender Warren Shymko to the Swan Valley Stampeders in exchange for 19-year-old forward Derek Falloon. Shymko backed up the Terriers for both of their finals appearances in 2010 and 2011, and took the starting role this past season, going 18-11-2, with a 2.46 GAA, .912% and 2 shutouts.

The Terriers are still eligible to return 19-year-old Kale Thomson and 18-year-old Dawson MacAuley between the pipes this coming season. MacAuley is expected to be given a good opportunity in Medicine Hat of the Western Hockey League, after spending some time their during the 2011-2012 season.

Falloon, from Russell, MB, had 35 points in 53 games with Dauphin and Swan Valley last season, his 2nd full season in the MJHL.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Rangers Sign Blasby and Learn

Press Release

Kitchener Rangers Head Coach and General Manager Steve Spott announced today that the team has signed forwards Ty Learn and Kegan Blasby to Ontario Hockey League contracts.

Blasby was chosen in the sixth round of the 2012 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection by the Rangers. He spent the 2011-12 season with the Markham Waxers, recording 11 goals and 14 assists in 26 games played. The 16-year-old forward also attended Ontario’s Under-17 Provincial Camp, held earlier this month in Cornwall.

“Kegan is a very effective two way player,” notes Rangers’ Director of Scouting Murray Hiebert. “His willingness to pursue the puck combined with his above-average offensive skill make him a welcome addition to the Rangers organization.”

Learn was Kitchener’s seventh round pick in the 2012 Priority Selection, and last played with the Southern Tier Admirals Minor Midget squad. The Niagara Falls, ON-native scored 16 goals and added 14 assists in 23 games over the 2011-12 season.

“In addition to being a strong skater, Ty possesses a hard shot,” says Hiebert. “He is a hard hitting and tenacious player who will add a physical element to our lineup.”

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

2012 USHL Fall Classic Schedule

Press Release

The 2012 USHL Fall Classic will take place on September 19-22 and is being hosted once again by the Sioux City Musketeers.  All 16 USHL Member Clubs are set to compete in three preseason games each during the event.  Games will be played at the Tyson Events Center and IBP Ice Center in Sioux City, Iowa.
2012 USHL Fall Classic game schedule:
   Date    Rink Start Home   Away
9/19/2012    Tyson 1:00 PM Des Moines Buccaneers   Cedar Rapids RoughRiders
9/19/2012    IBP 2:00 PM Chicago Steel   Omaha Lancers
9/19/2012    Tyson 4:00 PM Tri-City Storm   Dubuque Fighting Saints
9/19/2012    IBP 6:00 PM Fargo Force   Lincoln Stars
9/19/2012    Tyson 7:00 PM Sioux City Musketeers   Sioux Falls Stampede
9/20/2012    IBP 10:00 AM Muskegon Lumberjacks   Waterloo Black Hawks
9/20/2012    Tyson 10:00 AM Indiana Ice   Tri-City Storm
9/20/2012    Tyson 1:00 PM Fargo Force   Chicago Steel
9/20/2012    IBP 2:00 PM Youngstown Phantoms   Des Moines Buccaneers
9/20/2012    Tyson 4:00 PM Cedar Rapids RoughRiders   Lincoln Stars
9/20/2012    IBP 6:00 PM Omaha Lancers   Green Bay Gamblers
9/20/2012    Tyson 7:00 PM Dubuque Fighting Saints   Team USA
9/21/2012    IBP 10:00 AM Des Moines Buccaneers   Indiana Ice
9/21/2012    Tyson 9:30 AM Chicago Steel   Waterloo Black Hawks
9/21/2012    Tyson 1:00 PM Fargo Force   Green Bay Gamblers
9/21/2012    IBP 2:00 PM Tri-City Storm   Cedar Rapids RoughRiders
9/21/2012    Tyson 4:00 PM Muskegon Lumberjacks   Sioux Falls Stampede
9/21/2012    IBP 6:00 PM Youngstown Phantoms   Dubuque Fighting Saints
9/21/2012    Tyson 7:00 PM Sioux City Musketeers   Team USA
9/22/2012    Tyson 10:00 AM Green Bay Gamblers   Youngstown Phantoms
9/22/2012    IBP 11:00 AM Sioux Falls Stampede   Team USA
9/22/2012    Tyson 1:00 PM Lincoln Stars   Muskegon Lumberjacks
9/22/2012    Tyson 4:00 PM Waterloo Black Hawks   Indiana Ice
9/22/2012    Tyson 7:00 PM Sioux City Musketeers   Omaha Lancers
*subject to change

*subject to change

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)

Vees Pull-Off Eight Player Swap

Press Release

PENTICTON, BC– The Penticton Vees Hockey Club were involved in a six team, eight player trade on Tuesday. The Vees acquired forward Sam Mellor (92) from the Trail Smoke Eaters and defenseman Rob Mann (92) from the Markham Waxers.

As part of the multi-team transaction, the Vees traded defenseman DJ Jones (92) to the Victoria Grizzlies and forward Grant Nicholson (93) to the Cowichan Valley Capitals.

In acquiring Mellor, the Vees were involved in two separate deals with the Capitals and Grizzlies. The Vees traded Nicholson to the Caps’ for the rights to defenseman Djordje Leposavic (92). Penticton also sent Jones to the Grizzlies for forward Alex Holland (92). The Vees then packaged the rights of Leposavic and Holland to the Trail Smoke Eaters for Mellor.

Mellor, 20, spent the 2011-2012 season at the University of Alaska-Anchorage in the WCHA. In his freshman season, the Cranbrook native tallied four goals and nine points in 33 games. Prior to Alaska, Mellor played two seasons as a Trail Smoke Eater, where he collected 61 goals and 130 points in 104 games. Mellor also brings international experience as he played on Team Canada West in the 2010 World Junior ‘A’ Challenge.

Penticton Vees Head Coach and GM Fred Harbinson acknowledges the teams’ need upfront, “We lost a lot of scoring from our lineup but now feel we have done a good job addressing that need. The addition of Sam not only brings a proven point producer but also brings experience to our group."

The Vees were involved in another multiple team transaction in landing Robert Mann. The Vees first acquired the rights of both defenseman Ryan Wells (93) from the Nanaimo Clippers and goaltender Curtis Martinu (92) from the Drayton Valley Thunder. In the acquisition for Mann the Vees traded Wells and Martinu to the Markham Waxers.

Mann hails from Oshawa, Ontario and spent the last two seasons between the Whitby Fury and Waxers of the Ontario Junior Hockey League. Last season the 6’4 rear-guard collected three goals and 30 points in 40 games split between Whitby and Markham. He is committed to Robert Morris University for the 2013-2014 season.

When asked about Mann, Harbinson states that “Rob is an imposing d-man that can play a two way game. At 6'4 215 lbs. Rob will bring a physical element along with a strong skill set that will help reconstruct our backend."

Adding players like Mellor and Mann to the roster come at a price. “We had to give up to very good kids; two character kids in the process. Both DJ and Grant will now have the opportunity for a larger role under two very well respected coaches in Victoria and Cowichan Valley.”

The Penticton Vees organization welcomes both Sam and Robert to the South Okanagan. Also the Vees would like to thank DJ and Grant for their contributions to the team and the community.

(Nathan can be reached at nathanfournier@mainehockeyjournal.com)