Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Wheat Kings practices resume on Tuesday

Press Release

Brandon, MB. – Now that Training Camp is over for the Brandon Wheat Kings, preparations for the hockey club’s pre-season opening home and home series with the Moose Jaw Warriors begins on Tuesday.

With thirty-four players in camp, general manager and head coach Kelly McCrimmon will split the group into two teams for practices on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

This Week’s Practice Times:

Tuesday and Wednesday, Sept. 3rd and 4th – 1pm and 2:45pm
Thursday, September 5th – 1:30pm and 3:00pm

Of those 34 players – four will be off to National Hockey League camps this week (Ryan Pulock; New York Islanders, Eric Roy; Calgary Flames, Nick Walters; St. Louis Blues and Richard Nejezchleb; Pittsburgh) and three (Nolan Patrick, Kale Clague and Tanner Kaspick) are 15-year old prospects and won’t be eligible to play in the Western Hockey League until the 2014-14 campaign.


In addition to Rookie and Main Camp this past week, the club conducted thorough fitness testing for all returning veterans and McCrimmon was encouraged with the results.

“Our players showed great commitment this offseason to their training. They took a lot of pride in their work, and they have set a high standard for each other.”

Capturing the overall title as Top Conditioned Player was second year forward Jayce Hawryluk. A 17-year old Swan River product, who helped Team Canada capture the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament in the Czech Republic last month, came out on top in Body Fat, tied for first in both Chinups and the Vertical Jump as well as finishing second in both Squats and Bench.

A former second round bantam draft choice of the Wheat Kings, Hawryluk's body fat during this week's testing was an impressive 4.47%, he tied both Chad Robinson and Jens Meilleur with 26 chinups and finished with a 29.5" vertical jump, equalling captain Ryan Pulock.

Besides the vertical jump tie, Pulock finished first in Squats and Bench at 426 lbs and 297 lbs respectively and took top honours in leg power. Hawryluk's numbers were 338 lbs and 247 lbs for both the Squats and Bench.

Meanwhile another 17-year old second year player John Quenneville came out on top in the VO2 and Aerobic Power Testing.

Others singled out for praise by McCrimmon were veterans Quintin Lisoway, Tayler Cooper, Richard Nejezchleb as well as 17-year old rookie Brett Kitt.

This week's fitness testing results sent a clear message to Wheat Kings Strength and Condition Coach Jim Frederickson.

"Overall offseason commitment of the group was exceptional," says Frederickson, who is entering his eleventh season with the organization. "This was one of the strongest, top conditioned groups we've ever had."

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

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