Thursday, August 29, 2013

Tragedy on Shuswap Lake

The Saskatoon Blades have signed three of their 2013 bantam draft picks. . . . D Nolan Reid, the 41st overall selection, is from Deer Valley, Sask. He had 27 points in 30 games with a bantam team at Notre Dame last season. . . . F Parker Smyth, the 44th selection, had 32 points in 31 games with his hometown bantam AAA Red Deer Rebels Black. . . . F Luke Gingras, from Langley, B.C., was taken in the third round, 67th overall. He played for the bantam AAA Langley Eagles last season. . . . The Blades also trimmed two players with WHL experience from their camp roster — G Spencer Tremblay and F Daniel Wray. Tremblay, who turns 19 on Sept. 20, got into 20 games with the Moose Jaw Warriors in 2011-12. Last season, he played just five games — one with the MJHL’s Waywayseecappo Wolverines, three with the QMJHL’s Moncton Wildcats and one with the Red Deer Rebels. Wray, 18, had had one assist in 31 games with the Seattle Thunderbirds last season.
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The Kelowna Rockets have signed head coach Ryan Huska, 38, to a three-year contract extension that will kick in following the completion of the 2013-14 season. That means that Huska, who is going into his seventh season as the team’s head coach, is signed through 2016-17. He also served as an assistant coach with the Rockets, so is entering his 12th season with the organization.
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OHLThe OHL’s North Bay Battalion has signed Stan Butler, the director of hockey operations and head coach, to a five-year extension. Butler, 57, has been with the franchise since 1998-99. The Battalion is in its first season in North Bay, after 15 winters in Brampton. . . . Butler spent one season (1996-97) as head coach of the WHL’s Prince George Cougars.
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The Tri-City Americans have signed D Brendan O’Reilly, a 16-year-old training camp invitee from Southlake, Texas. O’Reilly, 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds, was one of a team-record 14 American players to attend Tri-City’s training camp. . . . O’Reilly spent last season with the Victory Honda U-16 team in the Tier 1 Elite League. In 47 games, he had 20 points.
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The Regina Pats have signed F Sam Steel, the second overall pick in the 2013 bantam draft, to a WHL contract. Steel had a team-high 104 points, including 52 goals, in 31 games for the bantam AAA Sherwood Park, Alta., Flyers last season.
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ECHLF Ryan Harrison, who completed a five-year WHL career last season, has signed with the ECHL’s Cincinnati Cyclones. Harrison, 21, is from Kelowna. He played 325 WHL games, split between the Prince Albert Raiders, Medicine Hat Tigers and Everett Silvertips. Last season, he had 32 points in 51 games with Everett.
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The Saskatoon Blades are working to get clearance to add Russian F Nikita Sherbak to their roster. While that goes on, all Sherbak can do is watch training camp and ride a stationary bike. Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Saskatoon StarPhoenix has more right here.
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What follows is a corrected version of something that appeared here yesterday. Mike Dyck won’t be running the bench when he joins the Kootenay Ice in December. Assistant coach Jay Henderson will be in charge, with Dyck assisting him. . . .
The Kootenay Ice has added Mike Dyck to its coaching staff. Dyck, a former head coach of the Lethbridge Hurricanes, will attend training camp and will return to the team to help first-year assistant Jay Henderson on the bench when head coach Ryan McGill serves as an assistant coach with Canada’s national junior team in December. . . . “With Ryan going to the World Juniors and this being Jay's first year coaching in the WHL,” Chynoweth said in a news release, “we felt another coach was needed during this time frame. We feel very fortunate to be able to add a coach with the experience that Mike has in the WHL." . . . Dyck spent five seasons as Lethbridge’s head coach, going 132-120-16 and reaching the WHL’s championship final in 2008. He also worked as an assistant coach with Lethbridge and the Vancouver Giants.
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OHLEarlier this week, the OHL’s Kitchener Rangers revealed that they had made a profit of $22,165 for the 2012-13 season. That may not seem like much, but check out Josh Brown’s story from the Guelph Mercury right here for some of the details. . . . It’s the 18th season in a row in which the Rangers have shown a profit.
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Kevin Boutilier, a defenceman who played parts of two seasons with the Chilliwack Bruins, is missing and presumed drowned in the Narrows area of Shuswap Lake near Sicamous, B.C.
From the Kamloops Daily News:
Search and rescue crews were not able to find Kevin Boutilier, 25, after an incident Saturday afternoon.
A group of people were on a houseboat when one person's hat blew off, witnesses told police.
Some of them dove in to try to retrieve it, but ran into trouble as inclement weather pushed the boat away. More people jumped off the boat to come to their aid.
"Of the group in the water, one individual was last seen in distress and seen going under the surface several times and did not resurface in spite of one of his friends being alongside him who was attempting to assist him," Sgt. Dave Dubnyk of the Sicamous RCMP said.
Police are now looking at recovery efforts, but note that this area of the lake is very deep and the terrain at the bottom creates challenges for divers using sonar equipment.
The Calgary Sun has more right here.
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Wayne Chernecki (Winnipeg Jr. Jets, 1969-71) was one of the great players in the early days of the WHL. In 1970-71, he had 123 points, including 50 goals. . . . Chernecki died on Feb. 11 in Winnipeg of cancer. Paul Brett, a friend, remembers Chernecki right here.
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From Lukas Walter (@Lukaswalter9): “Would like to thank the @pdxwinterhawks for everything and wishing the team goodluck this year”
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From Scott Sepich (@SSepich): “Winterhawks players are tweeting farewells to Lukas Walter and Eric Walker, so it appears those 2 are out as 20-year-old options.”

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