Tuesday, May 31, 2016

BCHL News & Trades:

I found these press releases off team websites, twitter accounts, blogs or online. All Vipers news-trades are posted on this blog as soon as released-announced.

BCHL News & Trades:

Vees Unveil Big Plans For Next Season:

The Penticton Vees Jr. ‘A’ Hockey Club held a press conference Tuesday unveiling plans for the upcoming 2016-17 season. The Vees will be hosting the 2017 Western Canada Cup (WCC) which runs April 29th-May 7th, 2017, and Tuesday the team announced early bird pricing for the event. For existing season ticket holders, early bird packages are available for just $129 and $149 for the general public. Season ticket holders can buy their WCC early bird packages at this discounted rate now. The general public can purchase their early bird WCC package staring July 1st through to December 31st. Director of Player Personnel & Corporate Sales David Michaud says they wanted to encompass all fans with their pricing, “As an organization we work very hard to make our hockey as affordable as possible.  We are thrilled that we are able to offer ticket packages that are far and away the most affordable in the history of the event.  The entire week promises to be a treat for our fans both on the ice, and off.” The team also announced plans for a “Ring of Honour” that will be launched at the WCC next year, and Michaud says fans will be thrilled with the first group of honourees, “We wanted a legacy piece around the WCC and by creating the “Ring of Honour” inside the SOEC, it will provide a special reminder of all the great players, and builders who came before us.  We can’t wait to unveil the newest members during the WCC week, the fans will be so thrilled with whose coming back to celebrate with us.” More exciting news for Vees’ fans is the fact the team is freezing season ticket and playoff pricing for the 2016-17 season. Season tickets and playoff tickets will be priced the same as they were in the 2015-16 season. Season tickets are based on three pricing levels, starting at $169.  Playoff packages are $168 for adults and $140 for seniors, a savings of $4 per game over walk-up pricing. Season tickets are on sale now for season ticket holders. Deadline for season ticket holders to guarantee their seat for next season is Friday, April 22nd. Season tickets go on-sale to the general public on Monday, May 9th. President, General Manager and Head Coach Fred Harbinson also announced a restructuring of the Hockey Operations department. Steve Cawley has moved from his role as Assistant General Manager and Assistant Coach, and now will involve with the team’s Scouting department. Harbinson says Cawley was instrumental in the programs’ success, “Steve has been a part of this organization for the past six years and was big piece in what we’ve built here; his passion for the team was infectious. He’s not only a tremendous coach but a great friend and will always be a part of this team.” Cawley spent the last six seasons with the organization, helping guide the team to two Fred Page Cup championships, Doyle Cup championship, Western Canada Cup championship and the 2012 RBC Cup national championship.

West Leaves Wild For Sports Talk Radio:

My Family and I are so excited for Don as he begins this new chapter of his professional life. I have made a new lifelong friend and have also had the unique opportunity to work with someone who always makes me smile. The world needs more laughter, and Don has never let me down in that area. I will miss him terribly, but couldn’t be more excited as he moves onto to something I know he was custom made for! He still will be the biggest wild fan there is, and we look forward to working together promoting the teams in the future! We did try and get a statement from Walt…but as usual, he has no comment. Wild Fans, we have diligently been on the search for someone to lead our marketing efforts, rest assured we will have an announcement soon.

-David White

TO THE GREAT FANS OF THE WENATCHEE WILD.... These last four years working for the Wenatchee Wild have truly been incredible and life changing for my wife Terri and myself. The Wenatchee Valley has become our home and we have never been happier. There are so many people that I need to thank for making this such a special time in my life. I want to thank the greatest Owners in the world David and Lisa White for giving me this opportunity. They truly are the nicest people you will ever know and I love them dearly. Special thanks To Head Coach and General Manager Bliss Littler for your friendship and helping me become a better person. I have learned so much just from being around you every day. Thank you Dave Rayfield for being my partner in crime in the office and all the things you do. You are a great friend and one of the hardest workers I know. Thank you Coach Clark, Coach Rudrud, Coach McKelvie, Coach Obermeyer, Pepe, JT, Evelyn, Jeri and all those that I have worked with in the Office these last four years. Thank you Steve Jackson, Uncle Ernie, Ken Dale, Randy Dawson, John Meissner and all those who work so hard to put on the Show every game. Thank you to Mark Miller, Chris Berg and all the staff at the Town Toyota Center and the incredible support you give to the Wild. Thank you to all the Sponsors for your support and friendships and for making this all possible. And now to the greatest fans in the world. Thank you for all your support as you make the Town Toyota Center the best Arena in all of Junior Hockey. Terri and I have made so many lifelong friends because of the Wenatchee Wild. I have an opportunity to pursue a career that has always been my dream and passion. I will be hosting a Daily Sports Talk show with Cherry Creek Radio and am so excited about my future here in Wenatchee. I will always be the biggest Wild fan and will promote and support them tremendously in my new position. Thank you for letting Terri and I be a part of your lives. And lest I forget Thank you Walt as you truly are the greatest mascot in the world. GO WILD!!!

Merritt-Alberni Valley Trade:

The Merritt Centennials have completed their trade with the Alberni Valley Bulldogs, as the Bulldogs send 1998-born defenceman Marshall Skapski to the Centennials. Picking up Marshall Skapski completes the trade that began on December 1st 2015, when Ryan Finnegan was sent to the Bulldogs for future considerations. The Abbotsford-born Skapski spent all of his first season in the BCHL with the Alberni Valley Bulldogs. Skapski had one goal and five helpers for six points in 47 regular season games, along with 40 PIMs. During their playoff series Skapski had one assist and two PIMs in five games. “We’re happy to include Marshall into our veteran defensive group. Marshall’s a great player, we were happy with what we saw playing against him this year. We think he’s going to fit into our defensive core just fine.” -Head Coach Joe Martin.

Coblenz Commits To Powell River:

The Powell River Kings are excited to announce the signing of Josh Coblenz (98) from the VIJHL Campbell River Storm. While with the Storm, Josh played in 42 games, contributing 24 goals, and chipped in with 23 assists in his rookie campaign. He continued that success into the VIJHL playoffs, leading his team in scoring with 17 points in 16 games. “I had the chance to watch Josh play in the playoffs on the island, and he he was dynamic” said Kent Lewis, Kings Head Coach and General Manager, “and we are excited to add Josh to our lineup for this season.” The tenacious forward should be familiar to Kings Fans, as he suited up in five games as an alternate player this past season scoring a goal and adding an assist. “In his 5 games with us, he showed his potential and versatility playing the wall and down the middle. He brings us depth and energy to the lineup which will allow us to roll four lines” added Lewis. The Campbell River native will join fellow Campbell Riverite recruits, Andy Stevens and Gavin Rauser this upcoming season. “It was a familiar program for me, having affiliated and played in games this season. I felt it was a great fit systems wise and it truly is a first class organization” said the newest King. “With the returning players coming back and the coaching of Kent and his track record in the league, I felt the team is on the verge of winning a championship and that is intriguing” added Coblenz. Josh will join his new teammates in August when the Kings open up training camp. Be sure to check back throughout the offseason for news as it happens, or on Facebook or twitter @BCHLKings.

Spruce Kings Name Howse New Assistant Coach:

The Prince George Spruce Kings are very excited to announce the hiring of Ryan Howse as an Assistant Coach.  Ryan will join Head Coach Chad van Diemen and Associate Coach Adam Maglio on the coaching staff. Ryan is from Prince George and played his minor hockey locally before graduating to the Chilliwack Bruins of the Western Hockey League. During his very successful junior career Ryan was drafted in the third round, #74 overall in the 2009 NHL draft by the Calgary Flames. For the past few seasons Ryan has been coaching minor hockey including the past season where he led the Prince George Midget Tier 1 Cougars to a very successful season including 7 tournament wins, culminating with a win at the British Columbia Provincial Midget Tier 1 Championships. Ryan had also been a scout with the Spruce Kings for the past year. “I’m thrilled to be able to add a great young coach like Ryan to our coaching staff. He has a great mind for the game and has a lot to offer our players. He’s played the game and excelled at a high level and more recently has proven that he can coach at a high level and be successful. To add his energy and enthusiasm to our group will be nothing but beneficial for our organization moving forward” said Spruce Kings General Manager Mike Hawes. “It is an honour and privilege to be joining the Spruce Kings staff.  I am very excited for the opportunity to work and learn a long side Chad and Adam and to do my best to help the Spruce Kings organization be competitive and successful in the future. I would like to thank Mike Hawes and the rest of the Spruce Kings staff for this opportunity” said new Spruce Kings Assistant Coach Ryan Howse. “Ryan brings a lot of knowledge and playing experience to our hockey club.  He’s not far removed from playing the game and he has been very successful in his first couple years of coaching minor hockey.  He has a great relationship with his players and he brings a lot of energy and passion to the rink every day. We think he is ready to make the jump to junior and believe he will make an immediate connection with our players” said Spruce Kings Head Coach Chad van Diemen.

Demin Commits To Wild:

The Wenatchee Wild, proud members of the British Columbia Hockey League, have announced that Slava Demin from Cypress, CA, has signed with the team for the 2016-2017 BCHL season. Demin was selected by USA Hockey to participate in last month’s NTDP tryouts for the top forty eight 2000 birth year players in the country. This past season, he played defense for the Anaheim Ducks where he helped the team to a fifth place finish in the twenty six team Tier One Elite League. Demin finished the year with fifteen points in thirty two games for the Ducks. Demin a 6 foot 1 inch and 185 pounds is a big kid that is growing. ”I am excited to announce I will be playing for the Wenatchee Wild in the BCHL next season. A huge thanks to my family and friends for helping me along the way,” said Demin Tom Rudrud Wenatchee Wild Associate Head coach commented “Slava is a good sized defenseman with excellent vision. He makes the transition out of his own end zone exceptionally well. Slava is also a player that has the ability to create offense. “ Bliss Littler Wenatchee Wild GM/Head coach also added “We could not be more excited to get Slava committed to come to Wenatchee. Slava is a high end kid that has high NHL draft potential. The BCHL is an excellent league to develop his skills in” The Wenatchee Wild will report to main camp August 22, 2016 to start their 2nd season in the BCHL and begin their quest for the 2016-2017 Fred Page cup.

Alberni Valley-Steinbach Trade:

The Alberni Valley Bulldogs send 20-year old forward Adam Donnelly to the Steinbach Pistons of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League for Future Considerations. This move is the first step of alleviating the log-jam of 20 year olds eligible to return next season. In 56 regular season games with the Bulldogs, Donnelly scored 7 goals and added 20 assists for 27 points, adding 73 PIMs. In 5 playoff games, Donnelly scored 1 goal.

Foley Commits To Eagles:

The Surrey Eagles are pleased to announce that 19-year-old Ryan Foley of Rosemount, Minnesota has committed to the team for the 2016-2017 season. He is the fourth player to commit to the Eagles already this offseason. Foley was a redshirt for the University of Wisconsin-River Falls (NCAA Division III) this past season. Previously, he was the captain for Rosemount High School in his senior year, where he finished as one of the school’s top ten all-time leading scorers. “I’m excited to be a part of a successful program next season,” Foley said in an interview with SurreyEagles.ca “The BCHL is full of top skilled players and is a fast paced game. I’m looking forward to playing junior hockey to show what I can really do.” The 6-foot-1, 175 pound Foley is known primarily as a speedy and skilled forward, who possesses the ability to break games open with his scoring touch. He has had experience playing in all types of situations throughout his career, and looks to be a player that Eagles’ head coach Blaine Neufeld will be able to trust in the upcoming season. “We are tremendously excited to bring Ryan into our organization,” Neufeld announced. “He was a top level player at the high school level in Minnesota, and after spending a year with the Wisconsin program, we are pleased to bring his experience and maturity to our group.” Foley’s main goal is to prove himself as a 19-year-old in the league, and has his sights set on a NCAA Division I scholarship. “While talking to Ryan, I got the sense that he is very motivated to get into a Division I program. That is exactly what our culture is going to be this year.” As the long summer approaches, Foley already intends on getting himself in shape and ready for the season ahead. “Surrey is in a good location, and seems like a great hockey town. I plan on coming in top shape, and I will be out there to win every game.”

Rawnsley Leaves Kings:

Powell River Kings play by play man Alex Rawnsley has informed the Powell River Kings that he does not intend to return as broadcaster for the 2016-17 season. Rawnsley started with the Kings in 2011 said he really battled for motivation with a lot of the "extra" stuff fans don't see and needs some time away from the rink.

Fahie Commits To Clippers:

The Nanaimo Clippers are very pleased to announce that Michael Fahie has committed to play for the Team for the 2016-2017 season. The 18 year old forward joins the Clippers after playing the past three seasons at the Noble and Greenough School in Dedham, Massachussetts. During the 2015-2016 season the 5’10” 160lb Pembroke Massachussetts native tallied 19 goals and 22 assists for 41 points in 26 games played. Michael is also committed to the NCAA Division 1 Brown University Bears in the ECAC league.

Gricius Commits To Wenatchee:

The Wenatchee Wild, proud members of the British Columbia Hockey League, have announced that Jake Gricius from Colorado Springs, CO, has signed with the Wild for the 2016-2017 season. Gricus, a 1999-born player, joins the Wild after a successful midget AAA career with one of the best programs in all of midget hockey in the Colorado Thunderbirds. In 28 games this year, he posted seven goals and 15 assists for 22 points in the Tier One Elite League. Tom Rudrud, Wenatchee Wild Associate Head coach had this to say about Gricius. “Jake’s a strong skating center iceman who will make plays. At 6’3 and 180lbs, Jake also brings some needed size and strength to the Wild. He will be an asset in our chase for the Fred Page Cup” Gricius, commented that “I am really excited and looking forward to a great year in Wenatchee and playing in the BCHL” Bliss Littler, Wenatchee Wild GM/Head coach had this to say about Gricius. “After watching Jake play in the National tournament I can see why our staff has been so excited about this young man all season. I feel Jake will develop into one of the better play making big men in the BCHL in time. Jake has been very well coached. He should be able to step in and make plays and compete right away.” The Wenatchee Wild will report to main camp August 22, 2016, to start their 2nd season in the BCHL and begin their quest for the 2016-2017 Fred Page cup.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Chevrolet Power Of Play With Former Vipers Defenceman Brownlee:

Rogers Sportsnet interview's Former Vernon Vipers defenceman Chad Brownlee back in late January.

Brownlee a current Country music star is a 2011 CCMA Rising Star award winner, also a recipient of his first JUNO Award nomination in February of 2013.  Brownlee played two years in Vernon (2001-03).  In 113 regular season games with the Vipers, Brownlee collected (14-goals-28-assists-42-points). Brownlee was drafted in 2003 in the 6th round, by the NHL Vancouver Canucks but retired from hockey after a short stint in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) with the Idaho Steelheads before becoming a Country music star.

Chad Brownlee's Player Profile:


This was posted on the sportsnet.ca website:


January 26, 2016

Motivation is everything for Chad Brownlee, a former Vancouver Canucks 6th round draft pick, who decided to trade in the stick for a guitar after only one season of pro.


Sunday, May 29, 2016

Kal Tire Place Project Goes Before Residents:

This is in todays Morning Star Newspaper:

Kal Tire Place project goes before residents

by Richard Rolke - Vernon Morning Star

May 29, 2016

Greater Vernon residents can have a say on the community’s newest arena.

The City of Vernon and MQN Architects will hold several consultation sessions on expanding Kal Tire Place to include a second ice sheet.

“We will present the design to date and ask for input on that design,” said Doug Ross, the City of Vernon’s recreation manager.

The sessions will be 1 to 2:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Lakers Clubhouse, 1 to 2:30 p.m. Thursday at the Coldstream Women’s Institute Hall and 1 to 2:30 p.m. Friday at the BX fire hall.

There will also be a session from 7 to 8:30 p.m. June 6 at the Kal Tire Place Grand Room

City staff and the architects are also meeting with user groups and other stakeholders.

Ross is urging Greater Vernon residents to become involved in the process.

“We want to get input from the public,” he said.

The tender for construction of the $13 million ice sheet could be issued early in 2017.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Former Vipers Pierce & Kisio Named Coaches For 2016 WHL U.S. Combine Camp:

The Western Hockey League (WHL) have named former Vernon Vipers forwards Luke Pierce & Brent Kisio two of four coaches for the 2016 WHL U.S. Combine Camp.

Pierce finished his first season with the Kootenay Ice, spent the previous six seasons as Head Coach-GM of the Merritt Centennials. Pierce was named BCHL Interior Conference Coach of the year in 2013 played his final year of Junior hockey in Vernon (2003-04) after being acquired from the Merritt Centennials for future considerations on June, 10th 2003. In 53 regular season games with the Vipers Pierce collected (7-goals-21-assists-28-points).

Luke Pierce's Player-Coaches Profile:


Kisio finished his first season with the Lethbridge Hurricanes, was an Assistant Coach, Associate Coach & Assistant General Manager for the past eight seasons with the Western Hockey League Calgary Hitmen before being named the Hurricanes Head Coach June 4th 2015.  Kisio played one season in Vernon (2002-2003) after being acquired in August of 2002 from the AJHL Fort McMurray Oil Barons. In 59 regular season games with the Vipers Kisio collected (20-goals-46-assists-66-points).

Brent Kisio's Player-Coaches Profile:

This is posted on the Ice website:

Rosters and Staff Named for 2016 WHL U.S. Combine Camp

April 12, 2016

Calgary, AB – The WHL announced today the rosters and staff for the 2016 WHL U.S. Combine Camp which will be held at the Anaheim Ice Facility in Anaheim, CA from April 15-17, 2016.

Powered by Under Armour, the combine marks the 11th consecutive year the WHL has hosted a camp focusing on U.S.-born prospects. The WHL U.S. Combine Camp in Anaheim will provide a unique opportunity for U.S.-born hockey players to participate with other top-ranked 2001-born players in an evaluation camp conducted by the WHL in the U.S. this season.

Four teams of U.S.-born WHL prospects will participate in a WHL Combine and team practice on Day 1 followed by a total of three games split between Days 2 and 3. All players will also have the opportunity to participate in a WHL Information Session and Under Armour Nutrition Seminar.

Luke Pierce (Head Coach, Kootenay ICE), Brent Kisio (Head Coach, Lethbridge Hurricanes), Mike Williamson (Head Coach, Tri-City Americans) and Bob Woods (Head Coach/General Manager, Saskatoon Blades) will run the benches for the Combine Camp’s four teams.

Pierce recently completed his first season as head coach of the Kootenay ICE after serving as General Manager and Head Coach of the Merritt Centennials in the BCHL. Kisio recently completed his first season as head coach of the Lethbridge Hurricanes after serving as an assistant coach for eight season with the Calgary Hitmen. Williamson recently completed his second season as Head Coach of the Americans, but has been a head or assistant coach in the WHL for each of the past 20 years and has earned both a MasterCard Memorial Cup and WHL Championship along the way. Woods capped off his second season at the helm of the Blades this year after he spent the previous five years as an assistant coach with the NHL’s Washington Capitals and Anaheim Ducks.

Jamie LeBlanc (Swift Current Broncos) and Colin Robinson (Kamloops Blazers) will attend the camp to provide equipment and athletic therapy services throughout while WHL Officials Bryan Bourdon and Ross Welner will also officiate the event to WHL standards.

The WHL represents the highest level of amateur hockey for junior-aged players in Canada and is a leading supplier of player talent to the National Hockey League and Canadian university hockey. Virtually all of the WHL’s 22 Member Clubs will be in attendance to evaluate players’ ability to play at the WHL level. The WHL U.S. Combine Camp also features an information session where players and their families will learn about the benefits of playing in the WHL and details on the WHL Scholarship program.

The WHL U.S. Combine Camp is open only to U.S. residents born in 2001, who live in the Western United States (including Alaska). Of the over 50 U.S.-born players currently on WHL rosters, the majority attended a WHL U.S. Prospects Camp in previous years. Former Medicine Hat Tiger and current Vancouver Canucks forward Emerson Etem took part at the WHL U.S. Combine Camp.

Players in attendance at the Camp will also be able to access results from the combine portion of the event through a database and compare their results with players in their age group as well as those currently playing at the WHL level. The testing will be conducted by Toronto-based Sport Testing Inc., a world leader in athlete testing systems.

For further questions about the 2016 WHL U.S. Combine Camp, please contact Kirt Hill, WHL Senior Manager, Player Development at hillk@whl.ca. For more information on playing in the WHL, please visit www.whl.ca/prospects.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Former Vipers Associate Coach Mallette Interested In Rockets Job:

Former Vernon Vipers Associate Coach Kris Mallette is interested in the Kelowna Rockets coaching position.

Mallette a Rocket Alumni & current Rockets Assistant Coach was an Associate Coach with the Vipers one season (2013-14) before leaving the Vipers for the Rockets on July 4th 2014. Mallette was selected 62nd overall in Round 3 at the 1997 NHL Entry Draft by the Philadelphia Flyers played ten years in the Minor Pros with Louisiana, Baton Rouge, Asheville, Elmira, Colorado, Youngstown, Laredo and Flint before starting his coaching career.

Kris Mallette's Players-Coaches Profile:


This is posted on Regan Bartels Kelowna Rockets Blog:

Mallette interested in vacant coaching position

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Kris Mallette believes he is ready to be a head coach in the Western Hockey League.

The assistant coach of the Kelowna Rockets admits he would be thrilled to take over the vacant head coaching duties with the team if given the opportunity.

Mallette is a strong candidate, considering he understood the expectations of the organization as a player and now as a coach.

"I think I have paid my dues. I did work my way up through minor hockey, junior 'B', Junior 'A' and now the WHL. You are coaching junior players. The message is the same. The X's and O's haven't changed. We are not trying to reinvent the wheel here".  

Mallette played two seasons with the Rockets in the late 90's before being traded to the Moose Jaw Warriors to close out his junior career.

"This will be my eighth year coaching junior hockey players. You pick up good, bad, new things and old things. The biggest thing, the year we went to the Memorial Cup, I say it was three seasons in one. The expectations of winning were there and so that's where I think I grew most as a coach", Mallette added.
General Manager Bruce Hamilton has encouraged both Mallette and assistant coach Travis Crickard to apply for the job, which came open this week when the team parted ways with Brad Ralph.

"I have had success over the years to be able to have guys that want to play for me just because of the relationships I have built with the guys off the ice and that they are not just hockey players and I treat them like a person".
A successor is expected to be named by the end of June.

This is posted in the Kelowna Daily Courier Newspaper:

Rockets no closer to naming new coach

Kelowna GM in Red Deer for Memorial Cup, plans to start interviews in June

Posted: Friday, May 20, 2016

Larry Fisher

The Kelowna Rockets’ coaching search is ongoing. Slow and steady thus far.
As of Friday afternoon, more than 70 applicants had expressed interest, with at least a couple of them jumping out as possible fits for Rockets general manager Bruce Hamilton. But he plans to do due diligence upon returning home from the Memorial Cup in Red Deer — where Hamilton is busy with his WHL chairman duties — and a hiring announcement isn’t expected until sometime in June.

“To be honest, I’m not any closer (to naming a new coach),” Hamilton said. “I’m filing them all and I’ll take some time probably next week to go through some things. It’s a research project now . . . and then the personal interviews will probably be what settles it.

“There’s a couple guys that I’m very interested in right off the hop,” he added, without name-dropping any candidates. “I take everything in confidence because the majority of them have jobs right now. Out of respect to them, I don’t (discuss individuals).”

The Rockets are searching for their fourth bench boss in as many seasons after parting ways with Brad Ralph on May 9. Ralph wasn’t hired until August last year and his tenure was short-lived for a variety of reasons.

Ralph had no prior experience coaching junior — he came from Idaho and the East Coast Hockey League — but that isn’t deterring Hamilton from potentially hiring out of the professional ranks again.

“No, it doesn’t really matter to me,” Hamilton said. “They’re coming in from all over the place, and a lot of guys that applied last year.”

Hamilton is casting a wide net, noting that he has business in Toronto next month and could end up meeting with candidates from Eastern Canada or the Northeastern United States. Others will be brought into Kelowna for face-to-face interviews as well.

Worth noting, neither of the Rockets’ current assistants — Kris Mallette nor Travis Crickard — have applied for the vacant position. Crickard’s contract is up for renewal and Hamilton hopes to retain both on next season’s staff regardless of who takes the head-coaching reins.

“They may (still apply), but my meeting with Travis was excellent — he has a full understanding of what I’m thinking about,” Hamilton said. “I think he did a wonderful job with the goalies and I thought Kris did a pretty good job with the defence. To be fair, I think they need some more time, some more mentorship.”

In saying that, Mallette and Crickard would be an invaluable resource to somebody hired from outside the organization. Hamilton hasn’t finalized any decisions but doesn’t anticipate the new coach would demand the opportunity to handpick his assistants.

“If I’m bringing a guy back from pro to here, he needs somebody who’s been here that can totally understand how it works here,” Hamilton said. “It’s such a dramatic change from what you’re doing up above. In pro, you’re not in charge of (the players) once they leave the rink. Here, once mom and dad drop them off, we’re in charge of looking after them 24 hours a day.”

Clearly, Hamilton is in no rush to find the right coach.

Asked if he planned to conduct any interviews in Red Deer, Hamilton said no — at least not formal ones.

“There will be guys that will approach me, that’s going to happen,” he said.

Hamilton doesn’t plan to expedite the process given the Vancouver Giants’ recent hiring of Glen Hanlon as general manager — they still need a head coach too — or Mike Johnston’s return to Portland in a dual role.

Prince George is also in the market for a coach, but Hamilton believes time is on his side through the month of June. He’d like to make a hire prior to the NHL draft, which begins June 24 in Buffalo, N.Y.

“I don’t think I’m going to lose anybody to other teams necessarily,” Hamilton said. “I think most of the guys probably see our (job) as a pretty good landing spot, so they’re going to wait and see what we do probably.”

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Ex Vipers Head Coach Holick Shortlisted For Vancouver Giants Job:

It sounds like the Western Hockey League Vancouver
Giants and former Vernon Vipers Head Coach-GM Mark Holick are talking.

The Giants are currently looking for a new head coach, while Holick is currently looking for work after mutually parting ways with the Prince George Cougars April 12th 2016.

Holick spent the past three seasons in Prince George, received a two-year extension (July, 16 2014).

Holick was Head Coach-GM of the Vipers for one season (2006-07) before leaving for the WHL Kootenay Ice.  Holick left the Vipers for the Ice a week before the Vipers Training Camp during the 2007-08 season. Holick posted a record of (37 wins-19 losses-1 tie-3 overtime losses) guided the Vipers to the BCHL League finals where Vernon fell in six games to the Nanaimo Clippers. 

Mark Holick's Player-Coaching Profile:


This was in the Vancouver Province Newspaper:

Where do the Vancouver Giants go from here? Owner Ron Toigo hopes to have staff in place by end of month

May 11, 2016

Posted by: Steve Ewen

Former Prince George Cougars bench boss Mark Holick is one of several names who has been linked to the Vancouver Giants' vacant coaching spot.

The Vancouver Giants wanted to hire Marc Crawford. The Ottawa Senators beat them to it.

The Giants, who are looking for both a GM and a coach, coveted Mike Johnston for the combo job. He opted to return to his last WHL team, the Portland Winterhawks, instead in that dual role.

So where do the Giants go from here?

Vancouver owner Ron Toigo said Wednesday that he still plans to have someone in place by the end of the month. Ideally, he’d like to have two people for the two spots, but he reiterated that wasn’t a deal breaker for him.

Names that have been linked to the Giants over this process include former Canucks goalie and onetime Giants assistant Glen Hanlon, former Prince George Cougars coach Mark Holick, former Everett Silvertips general manager Doug Soetaert, former Winterhawks GM and coach Jamie Kompon and longtime Alberta Junior A Spruce Grove Saints coach Jason McKee.

Toigo says that he believes that the Giants had a legit shot at Johnston, who loved living in the area when he was an assistant to Crawford with the Canucks. Toigo realized how loyal Johnston was to Portland, where he coached before taking the Pittsburgh Penguins’ job two summers ago, and wonders if Kompon had stuck it out there whether Johnston might have signed on with the Giants instead.

Complicating matters for Vancouver is the fact that the Cougars and the Kelowna Rockets are also on the hunt for coaches.

Hanlon was a name that seemed to come up early on, but it’s not been nearly as prevalent on the rumour mill of late. Holick, in particular, seems to getting traction when it comes to scuttlebutt about possible coaches. McKee has been mentioned for previous openings with Vancouver, in large part because he was a favourite of outgoing GM Scott Bonner.

Bonner, the only GM the team has ever known, resigned on Dec. 8. He agreed to stay on until last week. He handled the Jan. 10 trade deadline, and he helped scout for last week’s WHL bantam draft, but didn’t stand in with the actual selection process. He believed it was a conflict of interest, since he’s now working for Edmonton-based agent Gerry Johannson, and Johannson represented players in the draft.

Vancouver is looking for a coach to replace Lorne Molleken, who was fired with two games to go in the regular season. Molleken was hired last summer, replacing Claude Noel, who had replaced Troy Ward 25 games into the 2014-15 season. Ward was hired two summers ago, succeeding Don Hay, who had been at the helm for 10 years.

Doing the math, guys like Thomas Foster, Alec Baer, Ty Ronning and Tyler Benson are coming up on their fifth head coach.

For those scoring at home, Ward was hired by the Giants on July 17, 2014, and the Molleken was hired on June 30, 2015. Getting people in place by the end of the month would be a step forward this time.

This is posted on The Coaches Site website:

May 24th 2016

The Prince George Cougars are looking for a head coach after parting company with Mark Holick, who had been there since Jan. 23, 2013.

Holick now is believed to be on a four-man shortlist compiled by the Vancouver Giants as they look to replace Lorne Molleken, who was fired with two games left in the regular season. It also is believed that Holick has at least two European options on his plate.

The Giants might name a head coach at some point this week.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Wolves Sign Ex Vipers Goaltender Musico:

The American Hockey League (AHL) Chicago Wolves have signed
former Vernon Vipers goaltender PJ Musico.

After playing four years of University at Penn State Musico signed his first professional contract with the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) Greenville Swamp Rabbits October 13th 2015 before being traded February 9th 2015 to the ECHL Quad City Mallards.

Musico attended the Vernon Vipers 2008 Training Camp before being released.

PJ Musico's Player Profile:


This is posted on the Wolves website:


 February 27, 2016

The Chicago Wolves announced Saturday that goaltenders Anders Nilsson and P.J. Musico have been added to the roster prior to the team’s Amtrak Rivalry game versus the Milwaukee Admirals at Allstate Arena. Nilsson has been loaned by St. Louis (NHL) while Musico has signed a professional tryout contract (PTO).

Nilsson joins the Wolves after a trade Saturday between Edmonton (NHL) and St. Louis. The 25-year-old from Lulea, Sweden, has spent most of this season with Edmonton, where he posted a 10-12-2 record, 3.14 goals-against average and .901 save percentage. He also appeared in 2 games for Bakersfield (AHL).

Musico comes to the Wolves from Quad City (ECHL). The 25-year-old from Orange, California, is in his first year as a professional and posted a 7-3-1 record with a 2.35 goals-against average and .925 save percentage for Greenville (ECHL) before being acquired by Quad City on Feb. 9.

They join the team in the wake of goaltender Niklas Lundstrom being recalled from loan by St. Louis (NHL). Lundstrom, 23, appeared in 4 games for the Wolves and posted a 1-1-0 record with a 2.75 GAA and .901 save percentage. The Varmdo, Sweden, native was sent to Edmonton as part of the Nilsson trade.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Mavericks Sign Viper Alumni Nowick:

The East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) Missouri Mavericks have signed former Vernon Vipers forward Darren Nowick.

Nowick finished his fourth and final year at Northern Michigan University after spending two years in Vernon (2010-2012) played in 109 games with the Vipers collected (36-goals-50-assists-86-points).

Darren Nowick's Player Profile:


This is posted on the Mavericks website:




Missouri Adds Amateur Darren Nowick

INDEPENDENCE, MISSOURI (March 16, 2016)— The Missouri Mavericks announced Wednesday afternoon that Josh Robinson has been returned on loan from the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League.

Robinson, 26, was signed to a professional tryout with the Falcons on Feb. 17, 2016, and appeared in 3 games with the AHL team before his return to the Missouri Mavericks.  The Frankenmuth, MI native actively maintains the longest ECHL goaltender win streak record with 21 straight wins for the Mavs this season.  Robinson is currently ranked 2nd in the league amongst top net-minders with an overall record of 25-0-0-1, a 1.85 goals-against average (GAA), and a .928 save percentage (SV%).

The Mavericks also announced on Wednesday that they have signed forward Darren Nowick to an amateur tryout (ATO) contract.  Nowick, 24, joins the Mavs from Northern Michigan University (NCAA). Through 37 games this season, the Long Beach, California native scored 32 points (14G,18A).  He will wear number 49 for Missouri.

The Mavericks play their next four games on the road, beginning tonight with a 7:05p.m. contest against the Allen Americans in Allen, TX.

Missouri returns home to Silverstein Eye Centers Arena on Wednesday, Mar. 23 when they will face-off against the visiting Evansville IceMen at 7:05p.m.  Tickets for all Missouri Mavericks home games are available online at Ticketmaster.com and in-person at the arena box office. GO MAVS!

About the Missouri Mavericks: The Missouri Mavericks are a professional ice hockey team based in Independence, Missouri and the proud ECHL affiliate of the New York Islanders (NHL) and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. The Mavs are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the ECHL—the Premier ‘AA’ Hockey League in North America, led by General Manager Brent Thiessen and Head Coach Richard Matvichuk.  Founded in 2009, the Mavericks are entering into their seventh season in franchise history at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena.  Missouri competed for five seasons in the (now defunct) Central Hockey League (CHL) before formally joining the ECHL on Oct. 7, 2014 ahead of their 2014-15 campaign.  Lamar Hunt Jr. was announced as the new President and Owner of the Missouri Mavericks on Feb. 6, 2015.  The Mavs have made playoff appearances in five of their past six seasons, and have been honored numerous community and league awards including the Harry S. Truman Special Community Service Recognition Award, the Bud Poile Governors’ Cup (CHL), and the CHL Franchise of the Year Award for four consecutive seasons.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Former Vernon Laker Ferster Wins Second National Championship:

Former Vernon Lakers forward Rylan Ferster & the West Kelowna Warriors won the 2016 Royal Bank Cup with a 4-0 victory over the Alberta Junior Hockey League Lloydminster Bobcats Sunday. This is the Warriors first National Championship since moving to West Kelowna in 2006 from Langley.

Ferster is in his fifth season as Warriors Head Coach-GM played one season in Vernon winning a Centennial Cup with the 1989-90 Vernon Lakers.  In 28 games with the Lakers Ferster collected (8-goals-11-assists-19-points).

Rylan Ferster's Player-Coaching Profile:


This is posted on the Warriors website:


May 23, 2016

by kylea

The West Kelowna Warriors are the Best in Canada.

Jonathan Desbiens scored the winning goal in the first period and Matthew Greenfield made 48-saves for a shutout as the Warriors beat the Lloydminster Bobcats 4-0 in the Royal Bank Cup National Junior A Hockey Championship Game on Sunday May 22nd in Lloydminster, AB/SK.

Just over five minutes into the first period, Desbiens buried a rebound past Alex Leclerc off a nice play from Brett Mennear and Kylar Hope driving the puck to the net and getting the big bounce needed.

West Kelowna would be on its heels for stretches after that, but that is where Greenfield started becoming the story of the afternoon. He made a huge save off Christian Lloyd to keep it a 1-0 lead.

In the second, Garrett Forster chased down a loose puck and managed to find the trailer Reed Gunville, who hammered one past Leclerc from the slot as it was set up right on a tee for the Prince Albert, SK product.

Liam Blackburn scored short-handed halfway through the third period taking advantage of a miscue at the side of the net. Rylan Yaremko iced it with a 190-foot empty netter that got up and on edge and found the back of the net.

The loud and crazy Warriors fans brought it home in the final two minutes, as West Kelowna picked up it’s first National Championship to go along with the Western Canada Cup, and RBC Cup victories.

West Kelowna will travel home on Monday and further celebrations will be announced this week.

Game Highlight's,


Warriors Celebration,


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Comets Sign Ex Viper Forward Marino:

The American Hockey League (AHL) Uitca Comets have signed former Vernon Vipers forward Brandon Marino.

This is Marino's second stint with the Comets this year. Marino started the season with the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) Brampton Beast, picked up (13-goals-28-assists-41-points) in 40 games before signing a Professional Tryout Contract (PTO) with the Comets January 12th 2016. Marino was released February 10th 2016 after scoring once in eight games with Utica. Marino will join former Vipers Kellen Jones (2006-2010) & Michael Zalewski (2010-2012) who are also with the Comets.

Marino spent last season with the Austrian Erste Bank Hockey League (AEBHL) SAPA Fehérvár AV19.  SAPA Fehérvár AV19, is a Hungarian ice hockey team. After four years with Bemidji State University Marino spent the next five seasons playing in four different leagues (IHL, CHL, ECHL & AHL) with three different teams (Quad City, Fort Wayne & Norfolk) before playing in Hungary last season.

Marino played just two games with the 2002-2003 Vernon Vipers.

Brandon Marino's Player Profile:


This is posted on the Comets website:

Comets Sign Brandon Marino to PTO

Feb 26, 2016

Utica Comets Director of Hockey Operations Pat Conacher announced today that the club has signed forward Brandon Marino to a professional tryout contract (PTO).

Marino, 29, scored once and picked up four penalty minutes in eight games for the Comets earlier this season. He has also recorded 41 points (13-28-41) in 40 games for the Brampton Beast of the ECHL this season.

Last year, the Riverside, CA native played in 50 games in Austria for the Szekeshfehervar Alba Volan Hockey Club, where he scored 11 goals and added 28 assists. With the Fort Wayne Komets in 2013-14, he paced the league with 58 assists, and won the league scoring title with 88 points (30-58-88).

During the 2010-11 season with the Quad City Mallards of the CHL, he scored a league high 41 goals, and 13 power-play goals, en route to league MVP honors.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Sound Tigers Sign Ex Viper Juha:

The American Hockey League (AHL) Bridgeport Sound Tigers have signed
former Vernon Vipers defenceman Luke Juha.

Juha just finished his fourth and final year at Penn State University, was up for the Hobey Baker Memorial Award this year, also one of nine Canadian Junior Hockey League alumni who were selected out of the twenty candidates for the 2015-16 Senior CLASS Award in collegiate hockey.

Juha played one season in Vernon (2011-12). Juha played in just ten games picking up two assists, missed most of the season due to two long term injuries. The Vipers acquired Juha from the OJHL Burlington Cougars on June 27th 2011 for future considerations.

Luke Juha's Player Profile:


This is posted on the Sound Tigers website:


Courtesy: SoundTigers.com

Release: 03/24/2016

The Bridgeport Sound Tigers announced today that defensemen Luke Juha and Parker Wotherspoon have been signed to Amateur Tryout contracts. The team also announced that defenseman Graeme McCormack has been released from his ATO.

Juha, 23, completed his college career with Penn State University on Friday after appearing in 33 games for the Nittany Lions, recording eight goals and 16 assists for 24 points. In 101 games with Penn State, the Mississauga, Ontario native posted 15 goals and 45 assists to go along with 18 penalty minutes.

Wotherspoon, 18, has played the past three years for the Tri-City Americans of the Western Hockey League, putting up 11 goals and 45 assists in 71 games this season. In 210 career WHL games, Wotherspoon has 22 goals and 94 assists from the blue line.

The Islanders’ fourth-round selection (112nd overall) in the 2015 NHL Draft, Wotherspoon served as an alternate captain for Tri-City the 2015-16 season. The 6-foot, 171-pound defenseman won a Bronze Medal with Canada’s at the 2015 Under-18 World Junior Championship and a Silver with Canada at the 2014 World Hockey Championship. A Surrey, British Columbia native, Wotherspoon’s older brother Tyler is currently a defenseman for the Calgary Flames.

Friday, May 20, 2016

A Centennial Cup Champion As Player, Former Vernon Laker Ferster Wants To Add An RBC Cup To His Trophy Case As Coach:

This is posted on the Hockey Canada-RBC Cup website:

Different experiences, same goal

A Centennial Cup champion as a player, Rylan Ferster wants to add an RBC Cup to his trophy case as a coach

Derek Jory-May 18, 2016

A lot has changed for Rylan Ferster over the last 26 years, but his focus has remained largely the same: win Canada’s National Junior A Championship.

In 1990, Ferster was part of a talented Vernon Lakers team that won the Centennial Cup (now the RBC Cup); the host Lakers outlasted the New Westminster Royals 6-5 in overtime in the championship game.

The 20-year-old Ferster spent a year away from hockey before playing for and graduating from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology. Six years playing overseas concluded with a longing to continue his hockey career, albeit behind the bench instead of on the ice.

This season was Ferster’s fifth as head coach and general manager of the British Columbia Hockey League champion West Kelowna Warriors and he has guided his team to its first RBC Cup – and his second.

“I remember how special it was, playing for a national championship,” said Ferster. “It meant a lot then and it means a lot now. They say the Stanley Cup is the hardest trophy to win in sports, but getting here isn’t easy.”

Playing for the hosts in 1990, Ferster and the Lakers received an automatic entry into the tournament, whereas the Warriors won the BCHL championship and Western Canada Cup, earning the right to compete in Lloydminster.

The way in which his teams entered the tournament isn’t all that is different, but much has changed since Ferster was a feisty forward who had 21 points in 28 games with the Lakers.

“Hockey is a science now,” said Ferster. “Players take care of themselves so much better now and preparation overall has really improved. Technology has changed everything.

“Back in those days you went to training camp to get in shape basically, now we’re breaking down video and analyzing as many aspects of the game and conditioning as possible.”

He also used to sleep a lot better.

“As a player you only have one person to worry about, yourself, but as a coach, you have a lot more on your plate,” he laughed. “It feels like I haven’t slept in two months, but I’d take that 100 times out of 100!”

Going to the rink, although tough at times during long seasons, is a privilege to Ferster, who doesn’t take it for granted. Even a bad day at the rink is still a day at the rink and with hockey seemingly in his blood, his seamless transition into coaching seems to have been written in the stars.

Ferster recalls working hockey camps as a Midget player and enjoying helping younger players. In Europe he’d help the coaching staff whenever possible, before acting as player-coach for a season in Germany before retiring.

That’s when he took off his equipment and put on a suit.

“I don’t know anything else; I played and now I do this,” Ferster said. “Take away a few odd jobs here and there and this is all I’ve ever done. I still really appreciate being able to go to the rink every day, as cliché as that sounds. I’m fortunate to be in a great spot in Kelowna and I have to travel over that bridge [across Okanagan Lake] every day to go to work and I’m just happy I get to go to the rink.”

The Warriors are very happy to have him as coach.

West Kelowna has won 132 regular-season games over the last four seasons, with this year’s 79-point performance putting them third in the BCHL standings. It closed the season by winning 12 of their last 13 games, led by a 242-goal offence, the league’s third-best.

On defence, the 180 goals against were sixth-best, and special teams were both top-five finishers – the power play clicked at a 24.6% success rate (third) and penalty kill was at 83.2% (fourth).

Now all that stands between the Warriors and the perfect ending to their season are four other teams at the RBC Cup.

Ferster hasn’t spoken to the Warriors about his championship and he doesn’t think he will. That was then and this is now.

“My message is mainly about short-term competition. I was fortunate to be with [Canada West at the World Junior A Challenge] for a few years, so I know the ins and outs of short-term competition. I stick to that, they don’t need to hear about back in my day.”

Agree to disagree.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Viper Alumni Noonan Returns To Cincinnati:

The American Hockey League (AHL) Milwaukee Admirals have reassigned former Vernon Vipers defenceman Garrett Noonan to the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) Cincinnati Cyclones.

Noonan started the season with the Cyclones, split this season with Cincinnati & Milwaukee after being called up to the Admirals twice this season before returning to the ECHL. In 55 games with Cincinnati Noonan has (9-goals-34-assists-43-points) & one assist in 17 games with Milwaukee.

After four seasons at Boston University Noonan signed a Entry-Level Deal with the Nashville Predators on April 22nd 2014 also signed an amateur try-out contract (ATO) with the American Hockey League (AHL) Milwaukee Admirals. Noonan has spent the past two seasons playing with Cincinnati & Milwaukee. Noonan was drafted by Nashville in Round 4 #112 overall in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.

Noonan played one season in Vernon (2009-2010) In 58 regular season games with the Vipers Noonan collected (2-goals-16-assists-18-points).

Garrett Noonan's Player Profile:


This is posted on the Admirals Roundtable Blog:

Garrett Noonan Returning to Cincinnati

Posted on March 9, 2016 by Daniel Lavender

The numbers game appears to be working against defenseman Garrett Noonan once again. As first reported by Dakota Johnson of Sin Bin Cyclones Noonan will be returning to the Cincinnati Cyclones (ECHL) from the Milwaukee Admirals (AHL).

This news comes after the Admirals loss last night which saw Noonan sit out as a healthy scratch for the fourth consecutive game. Patrick Mullen, who has missed the Admirals last eight-games due to a skate cut to his right hand that required thirteen stitches to repair, has been back practicing with the Admirals since Saturday and is possible to return this weekend. The Admirals already added defensive depth at the NHL Trade Deadline when the Nashville Predators acquired Corey Potter from the Arizona Coyotes organization. From the moment of his arrival it pushed Noonan out as a healthy scratch. Now he’s due back to the ECHL.

It is slightly unfortunate for Noonan that he hasn’t had a decent enough spell in the AHL to see if he could catch the same level of fire he’s bringing to the ECHL this season. With the Cyclones Noonan has produced 31 points (7 goals, 24 assists) in 40 games. He is the Cyclones best offensive defenseman this season. Sadly, his career numbers with the Admirals don’t match up with that: 10 points (4 goals, 6 assists) in 57 AHL games.

I would love to see Noonan’s hot run in the ECHL continue on with the Cyclones and, hopefully, see him brought back as a restricted free agent this off-season with a spot in the AHL there for him. I could see Taylor Aronson‘s 2013-14 season being a great model of how Noonan could progress into the Admirals lineup. Still, there might be a fear that what the Predators thought they drafted in Noonan back in 2011 they received this past off-season with Trevor Murphy. It’s hard to tell where Noonan’s story is going to really go.

Be sure to keep updated with Admirals Roundtable through social media platform of your choice: follow along Twitter, like us on Facebook, get photo updates on Instagram, and listen along on SoundCloud.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Former Vernon Viper Hadley Named Top Academic Achiever:

The National Collegiate Hockey Association (NCHC) this week announced 98 student-athletes as top academic achievers in the 2015-16 season, one of was former Vernon Vipers forward Aaron Hadley.

Hadley finished his third year at Western Michigan spent almost three seasons with the Vipers (2010-2013) before being traded to Nanaimo at the BCHL trade deadline.  Vernon sent Hadley to the Clippers on January 10th 2013 for future considerations.  (Jordan Klimek and Michael McNicholas).  In 146 career games with the Vipers Hadley collected (38-goals-46-assists-84-points).  

Aaron Hadley's Player Profile:


This is posted on the NCHC website:

NCHC Recognizes 98 Student-Athletes for Academic Achievement in 2015-16



Ninety-eight earn Academic All-Conference; 33 collect Scholar-Athlete Team nod with 3.5 GPA or better

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – While student-athletes in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) have certainly shown their ability to excel on the ice, many of them are also having success in the classroom as 98 student-athletes were named to the 2015-16 NCHC Academic All-Conference Team, the conference announced Wednesday. Along with that, 33 of those 98 also garnered NCHC Scholar-Athlete Team honors.

In a change in policy from the first two seasons, the NCHC Scholar-Athlete Team now includes any student-athlete who has been at their institution for a full year and has achieved a 3.50 cumulative grade-point average or better. During the NCHC’s first two seasons, the Scholar-Athlete Team consisted of only eight members with one representing each school. Like in previous years, the NCHC Academic All-Conference Team recognizes any student-athlete that has accumulated a 3.0 GPA or better while having completed at least one year at their current institution.

Of the 33 student-athletes to receive NCHC Scholar-Athlete Team honors, 17 of them have posted a GPA north of 3.7, including four with a 3.9 GPA or higher. St. Cloud State sophomore defenseman Nathan Widman was the lone NCHC student-athlete with a perfect 4.0 GPA. Western Michigan led all NCHC schools with eight members on the Scholar-Athlete Team, while Omaha placed seven on the team and Denver had six student-athletes earn the accolade.

Among the 98 Academic All-Conference Team members, six schools placed at least 13 student-athletes on the team, led by St. Cloud State’s 16. Omaha was right behind with 15 members while Denver and Miami each produced 14 student-athletes on the team. The 98 members of the team are one more than the 97 student-athletes that made up the 2014-15 NCHC Academic All-Conference Team.

While freshmen are not currently eligible for the NCHC Academic All-Conference or Scholar-Athlete Teams, those freshmen that achieve a cumulative 3.0 GPA or better at the conclusion of the 2015-16 academic year, will be added to the Academic All-Conference Team by the conference over the summer. Similarly, any freshmen who compile a 3.5 GPA or better will earn Scholar-Athlete Team honors.

The 2015-16 NCHC Scholar-Athlete of the Year will be announced at the NCHC Awards Celebration on Thursday, March 17 in Minneapolis, Minn. on the eve of the Frozen Faceoff.

All 98 members of the 2015-16 NCHC Academic All-Conference Team are listed below by school, with those also earning NCHC Scholar-Athlete Team distinction in bold.


Zach Aman
Hunter Fejes
Luc Gerdes
Matt Hansen
Michael King
Peter Maric
Alex Roos
Sam Rothstein


Will Butcher
Evan Cowley
Brad Hawkinson
Evan Janssen
Rudy Junda
Gabe Levin
Matt Marcinew
Greg Ogard
Adam Plant
Evan Ritt
Emil Romig
Quentin Shore
Matt VanVoorhis
Nolan Zajac


Louie Belpedio
Scott Dornbrock
Alex Gacek
Justin Greenberg
Sean Kuraly
Conor Lemirande
Devin Loe
Michael Mooney
Kevin Morris
Taylor Richart
Andrew Schmit
Colin Sullivan
Jay Williams
Johnny Wingels


Tony Cameranesi
Cal Decowski
Austin Farley
Alex Iafallo
Brenden Kotyk
Karson Kuhlman
Dan Molenaar
Willie Raskob
Charlie Sampair
Carson Soucy
Sammy Spurrell
Jared Thomas
Dominic Toninato


Matt Hrynkiw
Cam Johnson
Austin Poganski
Tucker Poolman
Johnny Simonson


Ian Brady
Brian Cooper
Grant Gallo
Jake Guentzel
Tanner Lane
Joel Messner
Luke Nogard
Austin Ortega
Justin Parizek
Aaron Pearce
David Pope
Jake Randolph
Luc Snuggerud
Kirk Thompson
Tyler Vesel


Joey Benik
Mika Ilvonen
Kalle Kossila
Charlie Lindgren
David Morley
Jimmy Murray
Niklas Nevalainen
Ryan Papa
Judd Peterson
Ethan Prow
Rasmus Reijola
Patrick Russell
Ben Storm
Daniel Tedesco
Nathan Widman
Blake Winiecki


John Carpino
Chris Dienes
Sheldon Dries
Taylor Fleming
Neal Goff
Aaron Hadley
Lukas Hafner
Scott Moldenhauer
Aidan Muir
Willem Nong-Lambert
J.T. Osborn
Paul Stoykewych
Frederik Tiffels

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Ex Viper Forward Mick Named RBC Cup Star Of The Day:

Former Vernon Vipers forward Logan Mick scored twice and added an assist helping the Alberta Junior Hockey League Brooks Bandits to their first win at the Royal Bank Cup after a 5-1 victory over the West Kelowna Warriors Sunday. This is Mick's second trip to the RBC Cup after Mick and his hometown Vernon Vipers went to the 2014 Royal Bank Cup in Vernon.

Mick playing in his first season with the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) Brooks Bandits collected (6-goals-11-assists-17-points) in 24 games with the Bandits this season, are in the second round of the AJHL Playoffs with the Canmore Eagles.

Mick started the season with the Salmon Arm Silverbacks, never played a single game this season due to injury was traded to Langley on October 6th 2015. Mick was released from the Rivermen after playing in 22 games (2-goals-8-assists-10points) before signing with the Bandits on December 30th 2015.

Mick played two years in Vernon (2012-2014) before being traded to the Merritt Centennials on May 29th 2014 as part of the future considerations from a trade in January. On January 3rd 2014 the Vipers sent defenceman Jason Bird & future considerations (Logan Mick) to Merritt for defenceman Dylan Chanter. In May the United States Hockey League (USHL) expansion Bloomington Thunder selected Mick 400th overall in Round 25 of Phase two of the USHL draft. On June 20th the Merritt Centennials traded Mick to the Salmon Arm Silverbacks for Luke Bertolucci & future considerations.

Logan Mick's Player Profile:


This is posted on the Hockey Canada website:

Star of the Day


Logan Mick (F) – Brooks Bandits

The lone player on the Bandits roster with previous RBC Cup experience – he reached the semifinals with the host Vernon Vipers in 2014 – Mick helped Brooks pull away from West Kelowna over the final 40 minutes, setting up Joe O’Connor’s power-play marker midway through the second period before scoring two goals of his own to clinch the AJHL champions’ first win.

Game Summary & full game coverage,


Monday, May 16, 2016

BCHL News & Trades:

I found these press releases off team websites, twitter accounts, blogs or online. All Vipers news-trades are posted on this blog as soon as released-announced.

BCHL News & Trades:

Riddle Commits To Surrey Eagles:

The Philadelphia Jr. Flyers are pleased to announce that 1998-born forward Tyler Riddle has committed to the Surrey Eagles team for the 2016-2017 BCHL season. Tyler is a 5' 11" forward and the Leading scorer in the AYHL 18U division. "Tyler is a consistent player. That works hard, and competes every game" Bud stated. "Tyler is very strong with the puck and should do well in the BCHL next year" he added. The Jr Flyers organization wishes Tyler good luck in this step in his hockey career.

Clippers Bringing In New Part-Owner & Team President:

The Nanaimo Clippers are about to add a new key player to the ownership group. The city's B.C. Hockey League club is in the process of bringing in a new part-owner who will take over the roles of team president and governor. "We're close to making an announcement on a local partner that's going to come in for a percentage," said Ken Wagner, the team's current governor. "We've always looked for a local partner. We don't live there and the community should have a local owner there and that's what we've been lacking." The BCHL's annual general meeting will be held in June and Wagner said he expects the Clippers' new governor will be in place by that time. He said there's no hesitancy on his part to give up the role. "We've been looking for the right person for a long time and I think we've finally got one," he said. Even with a new part-owner in the works, the Clippers are for sale and will remain for sale. However, Wagner said there hasn't been serious interest from potential buyers. "Obviously if someone comes along and wants to buy the whole thing, then the partners will make a decision on it, but right now, this is to get a new person involved here to be the local guy." Wagner feels the change will help the club move forward, and he likes the way the Clippers are going. "We've had some success with the club the last couple of years; that helps with things…" he said. "Three or four years ago we hit the wall, but now we've rebuilt the program and recruiting has come back; we've got lots of kids that want to play in the program. We're happy. Extremely happy."

Boie Commits To Langley:

The Langley Rivermen are pleased to announce defenseman Frank Boie (1998 born) has committed to the Rivermen for the 2016-17 season. Boie is a Montreal, Quebec native and played four seasons with The Rivers School (based in Weston, Massachusetts and plays out of the USHS). In 28 games this year, he recorded 6 goals and 21 assists for 27 points. In 98 career games, he registered 10 goals and 44 assists for 54 points. Boie already has a college commitment to Holy Cross for 2017-18. “I am extremely excited to be a part of the Langley Rivermen organization. I look forward to the opportunity to play for such a well-respected team in the BCHL and can’t wait to get there,” said Boie. Boie stands at 6 foot 1, 185 pounds and describes himself as a very balanced blue liner. “I am a competitive, gritty player who loves to challenge the best players on the opposing team. One of my strongest skills is my skating ability, which is an asset both in the defensive and offensive zone. On the defensive aspect, I focus on doing all the little things right to help my team such as: finish checks, block shots, as well as making a smart first pass out of our zone,” continued Boie. Boie’s Head Coach at The Rivers School is former NHLer Shawn McEachern. Shawn believes Frank is a player that does things the right way and is a big reason why his team won two championships. “He was a top player on our team and was named co-MVP. He played against other team’s top lines and shut them down, while putting up some nice numbers offensively. His skating is elite and has the ability to join the rush or take the puck out of our end by himself. We were fortunate to have Frank at our program for four years,” said McEachern, who was Captain of the Atlanta Thrashers from 2002-2004. With his high school career over, Boie knows what he would like to accomplish in his time with the Rivermen before taking off to the NCAA ranks at Holy Cross. “My short term goals are to help the Rivermen earn a championship and to develop myself into the best player I can possibly be. I chose the Rivermen because they are a very competitive team that does a great job at developing players. Every conversation I have had with Coach Henderson have been awesome and look forward to wearing the Langley Rivermen jersey next season,” Boie finished.

Penticton Vees Unveil New 2nd Logo:

The Penticton Vees have unveiled a new second logo for the upcoming season, the one they will be hosting the 2017 Western Canada Cup. The new logo-look shows the long tradition of Junior hockey in Penticton showing all previous Penticton Junior hockey teams from the past, going back to the original Penticton Vees logo, Penticton Broncos, Penticton Knights, Penticton Panthers and the current Penticton Vees logo.
Penticton VEES's photo.
Chiefs Re-Sign Head Coach Tatarnic:

The BCHL Mainland Division Champion Chilliwack Chiefs today announced the signing of Head Coach and GM Jason Tatarnic to a new long-term contract. “Jason’s value to this organization and to hockey in Chilliwack has been proven over the past two years so we want him and Chilliwack hockey fans to know how much we appreciate him and his efforts”, said Club President Glen Ringdal. “Jason has built a first-class hockey department and achieved significant on-ice results with back-to-back Mainland Division Championships in very short order.  We fully expect his success – and therefore the success of the entire organization – will only flourish under his leadership.  His players are attracting notable attention from NHL and major US University scouts while they also continue to play an important role in the community activities of Chilliwack,” he said. The third-year of Jason’s original contract has been torn up to make room for the new pact which is for up to five years with options.  “We hope he’s here for all five years and then some,” Ringdal commented. “I am very thankful and honored that the Chiefs’ ownership group offered to extend my contract,” Tatarnic stated.  “They have treated myself and my family with nothing but class since day one.  My family and I are excited to be part of the Chilliwack community and the Chiefs organization.”

Warner Commits To Trail Smoke Eaters:

Trail Smoke Eaters spring camp has netted the team a top defenceman from the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL).  Ryan Warner, an 18 year old 6′ 3″ 180 lb. defenceman, has committed to the Smoke Eaters for the 2016-17 season.  Ryan played for the Peninsula Panthers  in 2015-16 and in 45 games had 7 goals and 12 assists for 19 points. Warner stated, “I’m very happy and excited to join the Smoke Eater family and looking forward to playing in such a historic hockey town and in front of a great community.”  “I’m a defence first player that will play tough and make it difficult for opposing forwards to get comfortable in front of our net.” The Smoke Eaters welcome Ryan and wish him good luck in the upcoming season.

Rivermen Name Shaw New Associate Coach:

The Langley Rivermen announced today that the franchise has hired former professional hockey player Chris Shaw to be the new Associate Head Coach. Last year’s Associate Head Coach & Assistant General Manager Kurt Astle has stepped down from his Associate Head Coach role, but will retain his Assistant General Manager position. Mitch Fyffe will remain as an Assistant Coach for the 2016-17 season. Chris Shaw, a Surrey native, was a defenseman that played in 168 career BCHL games from 1998-2001 between the Victoria Salsa and Burnaby Bulldogs. In his last season with the Bulldogs, he was named team Captain. Through 2003-2008, he played professionally in the Central Hockey League (CHL), United Hockey League (UHL), Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL), and in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) with the Victoria Salmon Kings. In total, he appeared in 214 professional regular season games. In 2009-10, he began his coaching career with the Alberni Valley Bulldogs (BCHL) as an Assistant Coach before taking the Head Coach & General Manager job with the Nelson Leafs in the KIJHL a season later. After a year with the Vernon Vipers as an Assistant Coach in 2011-12, he took over the reigns as Head Coach and General Manager for the Ontario Avalanche (WSHL) for the better part of two seasons. “I am really excited for the chance to coach back in the BCHL again. Bobby and I go back a long ways and to have an opportunity to coach alongside him will be a great experience, as it has been something we have talked about for a long time,” said Shaw. Coach Henderson believes Shaw’s experience and familiarity with the league makes him a great fit. “Losing Kurt on the bench, we felt it was important to add an experienced coach to our staff. Chris brings along a great playing and coaching resume that our players will be able to draw from. His experience with player development, bench management, and recruiting will be a valuable asset for us,” said Henderson. Asked to describe his coaching philosophy, Shaw pointed to a few things that he stands by. “Accountability and integrity are pretty big for me. I feel like I am a pretty good motivator and have always had an open door policy with my players. I like to communicate with them as much as I can and earn their trust before I start pushing buttons,” said Shaw. Although there is more than four months before training camp begins, both Shaw and Henderson are eager to be on the same BCHL bench for the first time. “Chris and I were first teammates almost 20 years ago. Over the years we have maintained a great friendship and have talked about coaching together since we first played together. I am glad the timing is finally right for that to happen,” said Henderson. “I have followed the Rivermen pretty close over the past five seasons and the Henderson family has done a great job with their program. Year in and year out they continue to recruit quality players and I expect next year’s team to be competitive like they are every season,” finished Shaw.

Tychonick Commits To Vees:

After visiting the city for a week and seeing what the Penticton Vees are all about, top prospect Jonny Tychonick knew it was where he wanted to be. The 16-year-old defenceman was introduced to a gathering of Vees season’s ticket holders and other fans on Tuesday at the B.C. Hockey Hall of Fame section of the South Okanagan Events Centre. “I came here for a week in January and got to see what it is like to be a Penticton Vee,” said the Calgary Flames midget 3A star. “I met the guys, formed some friendships. I loved the city and the building. I knew right then that this was what I wanted to do.” Tychonick, who hails from Calgary, became the latest in a line of top-end players to spurn the Western Hockey League in favour of playing in the B.C. Hockey League for Penticton. The smooth-skating five-foot-11, 180-pounder was drafted by the Saskatoon Blades in the first round, 12th overall of the 2015 WHL bantam-age player draft. Forward Tyson Jost and defenceman Dante Fabbro just completed two seasons with the Vees after being picked in the first round of the WHL draft. Both earned NCAA Division 1 scholarships and are projected to be picked in the first round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft in June. Tychonick got to know Fabbro well during his visit and was suitably impressed with how he had developed under Vees GM and head coach Fred Harbinson. “You see how great a player and leader he is at still a young age,” said Tychonick, who proudly donned a No. 20 Vees jersey to the approval of the gathering. Harbinson compares Tychonick to current Minnesota Wild player and key member of the 2012 Vees national championship-winning team, Mike Reilly. “Not to put pressure on him, but his skating ability reminds me a lot of Mikey,” said Harbinson. “He’s a defenceman who creates a lot of offence." Tychonick, who already has a scholarship secured to the University of North Dakota, said he was surprised and honoured by the comparisons to Reilly. “Going from midget to junior, I know it’s a big step and I’m excited about the opportunity,” said Tychonick, who led the Flames to the Mac’s Midget Tournament championship in Calgary earlier this season. “I’ll just keep working hard and trying to develop with the Vees and hopefully someday I can be like (Reilly).” Tychonick collected five goals and 22 points in 28 regular-season games and a goal and four points in eight playoff games with the Flames. He also played two games with Okotoks Oilers of the Alberta junior league, tallying a goal and two points in three games. Tychonick said he’s not sure how many seasons he’ll play for the Vees before moving on the UND, which recently won the NCAA Division 1 national championship led by another former Vees blueliner, Troy Stecher. “I’m just going to play it year by year,” said Tychonick. “A lot will depend on how my development goes, what the coaches think is best. My main priority is playing for the Vees and hopefully being part of a team that can win a championship.” Tychonick admitted he was extremely excited about the prospect of the Vees hosting the Western Canada Cup in the spring of 2017. “That’s going to be amazing,” said Tychonick. “Hopefully we can win the league and the (WCC) and get to a national championship. That’s what everyone in Penticton wants.” Harbinson said other top recruits will be announced in the coming months. He noted several will appear at the Vees Spring Camp at the end of May. “We’re talking to a lot of players, getting commitments,” said Harbinson. “In terms of recruiting for next season’s team, we’re well ahead of the curve.”

Penticton Vees Press Conference,


Powell River-Prince George Trade:

The Prince George Spruce Kings are pleased to announce the acquisition of 19 year old goaltender Stefan Wornig from The Powell River Kings. The 6’6” 190 pound Wornig is from Surrey, B.C. and was acquired by The Spruce Kings as the future considerations portion of the January 10th trade between Prince George and Powell River that sent 20 year old defenseman Adam Brubacher to Powell River. Last season with Powell River Stefan had 8 wins, 12 losses with 2 shutouts and posted a 3.05 goals against average and a .914 save percentage in 21 games played. Stefan attended The Team Canada West tryout camp in both 2014 and 2015.  Team Canada West participates in The World Junior A Challenge every December. “We are excited to add Stefan to our organization. He is a big, technically strong goaltender who will help solidify that position for us. Goaltending at our level and in our league is extremely important. Having two solid goaltenders on the roster is going to give us a better opportunity to win hockey games. Stefan has also been in our league for a couple of seasons now so he will also be leaned upon to provide leadership on and off the ice” said Spruce Kings General Manager Mike Hawes.

Clippers Name Hewson Captain For Next Season:

The Nanaimo Clippers have announced Spencer Hewson as the team’s Captain for the 2016-17 season.

Dumaresque Commits To Langley:

The Langley Rivermen are pleased to announce forward Andrew Dumaresque (1997 born) has committed to the Rivermen for the 2016-17 season. Dumaresque is a Hammonds Plains, Nova Scotia native and captained Milton Academy last season. In 27 games during the 2015-16 campaign, he recorded 19 goals and 16 assists for 35 points. “I’m very excited to commit to the Rivermen next year. I chose the Rivermen because not only are they an extremely competitive team year in and year out, but they also have a great reputation for developing guys and moving them on to the next level,” said Dumaresque. Dumaresque is a 6 foot 1, 185 pound centre that describes himself as a two-way player. “I’m a hard-working centre that can play in all situations. I like to chip in offensively as well as shut down the opposing team’s best players. I also pride myself in being solid in the face-off circle,” he continued. Rivermen Head Coach and General Manager Bobby Henderson liked what he saw in Dumaresque when he took in a Milton Academy game in 2015. “Andrew is a big body forward that has a creative scoring touch. He excelled on both the power play and penalty kill and seems like a player you can trust in all situations. You can never have enough of those kind of players on a team and feel he will be a great fit up the middle for us,” said Henderson. With a new chapter in his hockey career about to begin with the Rivermen, Dumaresque has a good idea of what he would like to accomplish. “In the short term, I hope to come to Langley, have a great year, develop my skills, and help the team compete for a title. Long term goals – I hope to further my hockey career, move onto the next level, and earn an NCAA Division-I scholarship. Coming to Langley will be an excellent opportunity for me,” Dumaresque finished.

Berard Commits To Powell River Kings:

The Powell River Kings are very pleased to announce the commitment of 1999 born forward Ben Berard.  The 5’11, 185 pound forward comes to the Kings organization after two standout seasons in both the Canadian Sports School Hockey League (CSSHL) and the BC Major Midget League. A 7th round pick in the Western Hockey League Bantam Draft, Ben went on to lead the South Island Royals in goals scored (21), while finishing second in team points with 46 in 40 games played during the 2014-2015 season. This past season while suiting up for the U18 Shawnigan Lake School of the CCSHL, he once again led his team, in every statistical category; goals 34, assists 24 for 58 points in just 36 games. “We are very excited to add an impact player like Ben to our lineup for the upcoming season,” said Kent Lewis, Head Coach and General Manager.  “A player with his skill set is one thing, but after meeting and talking to Ben and his family, a person with his character is a great addition to our program here in Powell River.” Ben will contribute to a forward group that has a number of returning players from the 2015-2016 season. “I am very excited to join the Powell River Kings organization”, says Ben.  “After meeting with Kent and visiting the town, I felt very comfortable. While visiting, I got to take in a playoff game and saw the great atmosphere and support from the community.” Ben also noted, “I can hardly wait to get there and get started.”  You can get your first look of the newest King this coming August, as Ben will join his new teammates for training camp to be held here in Powell River. Details for the camp will be posted when they become available. Furthermore, be sure to stay tuned for more player signings and announcements throughout the coming weeks.