Friday, November 25, 2016
Vipers Swing Deals:
Vipers swing deals
by Staff Writer - Vernon Morning Star
Nov 25, 2016
The Vernon Vipers have made a few roster moves as they prepare for a weekend road swing in Wenatchee, Coquitlam and Langley.
The Snakes traded defenceman Carter Stephenson to the Salmon Arm Silverbacks in exchange for defenceman Cameron Trott and future considerations.
“It’s never easy to make a trade like that,” said Vipers head coach and general manager Mark Ferner. “Carter was a very highly touted, very good player, very good on the powerplay and a very good person.
Trott, 19, six-foot-two, 205 pounds, is in his second season in the BCHL, tallying six goals and 24 assists last season in 56 games. This season Trott has three goals and three assists in 19 games.
The product of Anmore, B.C. was part of the 2015 World Junior A Challenge Selection Camp, as well as on the NHL preliminary watch list.
Trott was expected to join the Vipers on the ice Thursday.
Stephenson, 18, a six-foot-1, 195 pound West Vancouver product, was in his first full season with the Snakes after spending time last season as an affiliate player.
He had five goals and eight assists in 13 games with the Vipers. He also served as an affiliated player with the Silverbacks last season, part of the reason the Gorillas were interested in his services.
“We weighed the pros and cons, especially in dealing with a team about 40 minutes down the road,” said Ferner. “But we had the chance to add a player that’s a year older, was ranked by Central Scouting, same type of player and a bit bigger.”
Vernon has also released goaltender Cole Demers, 17, and added goaltender Darion Hanson, 19, from Youngstown of the USHL.
Hanson, who has already committed to NCAA school Union for next year, spent last season in the North American Hockey League, playing in 34 games with the Aston (suburb of Philadelphia) Rebels, where he was named an East Division All-Star and a member of the First Rookie Team.
Hanson appeared in 34 games for the Rebels posting a 2.57 goals against average and a save percentage of .914.
Those numbers are similar to ones put up in 2014-15 by Andrew Shortridge, the Vipers’ MVP last season. Shortridge had a goals against average of 2.57 and a .913 save percentage in 33 games in the NAHL.
“We had two very good young goalies in Cole and Ty (Taylor) and they’ve both been very good for us,” said Ferner. “I tried hard to recruit Darion in the summer but he was a high pick in the USHL. I talked to Union about him. He’s a big guy, an all-rookie player in the NAHL last year and that’s a very good league for goaltending.
“It’s not that we didn’t like our goaltending. We had a chance to bring in an older guy. Cole has some personal things he would like to get worked out. We wish him well.”
The Vipers play in Wenatchee Friday, Coquitlam Saturday and finish off the trip Sunday afternoon in Langley.
Vernon Vipers goalie Ty Taylor is one of 60 players (the only Viper), including six goalies, invited to attend the Canada West hockey team’s evaluation camp in Leduc, Alta. Dec. 5-8, ahead of the World Junior A Challenge.
The Challenge will run Dec. 11-17 in Bonnyville, Alta.
Taylor, 17, a native of Richmond, has appeared in 17 games with the Vipers this season. He has a record of 9-6, a goals against average of 3.08 and a .901 save percentage.
A total of 25 B.C. Hockey League players were invited to the camp.
Players invited come from five Junior A leagues in Western Canada.
Coquitlam Express head coach Barry Wolff will be the head coach of Canada West.