Friday, August 29, 2014

Warriors do right thing . . . Hay returns with victory

The Moose Jaw Warriors have made a substantial donation to Journey To Hope, in memory of Ethan Williams, a 16-year-old prospect who committed suicide on July 29 in Winnipeg.
The Warriors donated the proceeds ($2,000) from their intrasquad game, as well as the gate from their Tuesday night exhibition game against the visiting Swift Current Broncos.
Journey To Hope is a Moose Jaw-based organization that provides support to those who have been impacted by suicide.
"Journey to Hope is all about suicide awareness and prevention,” Della Ferguson of Journey To Hope told Matthew Gourlie of the Moose Jaw Times-Herald. “We do the fundraising, but the next step is where the work begins really. It's about doing awareness work in schools and we've done awareness work with seniors. We've done training for councilors and school workers in all forms of suicide awareness and prevention in our community."
A fifth-round selection in the 2012 bantam draft, Williams was to have attended the Warriors’ training camp. It would have been his third preseason camp.
Considering what happened to Williams, Warriors general manager Alan Millar told Gourlie that the Warriors now are working in the area of mental health awareness.
"With what happened to Ethan, we did have some discussions with some of the young guys who are in our organization who knew him well," said Millar. "We've had some discussion with Sask. Mental Health and some other people. We feel that some type of orientation seminar looking at the big picture would be beneficial. It's something we've talked about for awhile."
Gourlie’s story is right here.
An email with a link to a video arrived in my Inbox.
Here’s the intro:
" ‘Be a man’ is something we've all heard at one time or another, even a few of the women reading this right now. Being a ‘man’ in that sense means something completely different to me (and maybe you, too) than what that phrase implies.
“I can't even begin to describe the toll that the concept of masculinity has taken on my life. And it's felt everywhere. It's time we make changes, starting from within ourselves.”
The video, from, is right here. Take three minutes and give it a watch.

 F Lukáš Vantuch (Calgary, Lethbridge, 2005-07) has been released from a tryout by Dusseldorf (Germany, DEL). Last season, with Liberec (Czech Republic, Extraliga), he had a goal and four assists in 31 games. On loan to Sparta Prague (same), he had one assist in five games and he was pointless in two games with Benátky nad Jizerou (Czech Republic, 1. Liga). . . .
F Zach Hamill (Everett, 2003-08) has signed a one-year contract with HPK Hämeenlinna (Finland, Liiga). Last season, he had three goals and six assists in 21 games with the Utica Comets (AHL) 21 GP, 3+6. He also played 13 games with Barys Astana (Kazakhstan, KHL), scoring once and adding two assists.

If you haven’t seen them yet, Alan Caldwell, over at Small Thoughts At Large, has created WHL team depth charts that feature only signed players. As usual, he has done a terrific job of providing even more roster-based information for WHL fans. . . . Check it out by clicking on the link over there on the right.
Head coach Don Hay was back behind the Kamloops Blazers’ bench on Friday night for the first time since the final game of the 1995 Memorial Cup tournament. The Blazers won the Memorial Cup, and last night they beat Hay’s former team, the Vancouver Giants, 5-4 in a shootout. . . . The Blazers erased a 4-2 deficit midway through the third period in winning their exhibition debut. Hay spent the previous 10 seasons as the Giants’ head coach. . . . Veteran F Cole Ully led Kamloops with a goal and two assists.
The Kamloops Blazers have signed G Connor Ingram, 17, who was placed on the club’s protected list in September after last year’s training camp. From Imperial, Sask., Ingram played for the midget AAA Prince Albert Mintos, who won the national title. During the regular season, he was 16-4-3/1.98/.928. . . . He was in goal for the final game of the national tournament, stopping 60 shots as the Mintos won in triple OT. . . . Ingram was credited with the victory as the Blazers beat the visiting Vancouver Giants 5-4 in a shootout last night. He stopped eight of 10 shots through OT and added two more shootout saves. . . . Ingram is one of three goaltenders left in camp with the Blazers, along with veteran Bolton Pouliot, 20, and Cole Kehler, who turns 17 on Dec. 17. Kehler got into 11 games with the Blazers last season, but spent most of his winter at OHA in Penticton, B.C.
Rory Boylen of The Hockey News has an interesting piece right here about some kids in Montreal who were playing street hockey until a neighbour called the cops. Presumably, the neighbour would rather the kids were keying cars and smashing windows.
---Here’s an interesting note from Matthew Gourlie of the Moose Jaw Times-Herald involving Tuesday’s rookie game between the host Warriors and the Swift Current Broncos, which went into OT:
“After regulation time, the Zamboni came out and did a dry scrape of the ice. It's basically the same thing they would do before a shootout, except they do the entire ice surface. After that full scrape, the ice wouldn't be touched before a potential shootout. The NHL will adopt the change this upcoming season. The WHL is doing it as a trial during the pre-season. Tuesday's experiment was not positive. It took nearly 12 minutes to do the dry scrape — two-thirds of a normal intermission — and they played 34 seconds of overtime. It would be one thing in an NHL rink where they have two Zambonis and could do the dry scrape in little more than five minutes, but the dry scrape Tuesday took entirely too long.”
Gourlie is right. Twelve minutes of intermission leading into OT is far too long, especially with the beer concessions closed.
F Reid Duke reported to the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Friday and is expected to play in an exhibition game today against the Pats in Regina. Duke, the fifth overall selection in the 2011 bantam draft, didn’t report to training camp. . . . It isn’t known why the Calgary native didn’t report for the start of his third WHL season; it also isn’t known if he asked to be traded. . . . General manager Brad Robson is quoted in a news release as saying: “The hockey club, Reid Duke, his family and agent came to an agreement beneficial to both sides.”.
The Edmonton Oil Kings have signed three players -- F Kobe Mohr, 15; D Brayden Gorda, 15; and F Tyson Gruninger, 16. . . . Mohr was the 20th overall selection in the 2014 bantam draft. From Lloydminster, Alta., he had 63 points, including 29 goals, in 26 games with the bantam AAA Lloydminster Heat last season. . . . Gorda, from Edmonton, was a third-round pick in the 2014 bantam draft. He had 26 points, including six goals, in 33 games with the bantam AAA Edmonton Maple Leaf Athletic Club. . . . Gruninger, from Drayton Valley, Alta., put up 54 points, 30 of them goals, in 37 games with a minor midget team in Leduc, Alta., last season. He was placed on the Oil Kings’ protected list in March.

F Ty Lewis, 16, had his training camp with the Brandon Wheat Kings come to an end Thursday night when he broke a bone in his left forearm. Lewis, who is from Brandon, was a third-round pick by the Wheat Kings in the 2013 bantam draft. . . . The Saskatoon Blades have lost F Ty Mappin to a brain injury. Mappin, who was hurt Sunday, may return to the ice on Tuesday. . . .
D Joshua Smith, who turns 20 on Oct. 2, is in camp with the Portland Winterhawks after playing 93 games with the Prince George Cougars over four seasons. Smith, from Lacombe, scored one goal in that time. So guess who scored Portland’s first preseason goal? You got it. Smith opened the scoring on Friday and the Winterhawks went on to a 7-5 victory over the Spokane Chiefs at a preseason tournament in Everett. . . . Other 20-year-olds on Portland’s roster are F Adam de Champlain, F Trace Elson, D Josh Hanson and F Trent Lofthouse . . .
Nick Patterson of the Everett Herald notes that “Twitter reports suggest D Tristen Pfeifer, F Nik Malenica and F Gunnar Wegleitner have signed with the Silvertips.” All three are undrafted list players. Pfeifer, 18, is from Phoenix where he played last season for the U-18 Junior Coyotes. Malenica, who turns 17 on Oct. 11, is from Nanaimo and played the last two seasons for the major midget North Island Silvertips. Wegleitner, a 16-year-old from Vancouver, played for the major midget Greater Vancouver Canadians. . . . F Carson Bolduc, 18, who chose not to report to the Kamloops Blazers and was said to be evaluating his future, is in camp with the BCHL’s Salmon Arm SilverBacks. Bolduc is from Salmon Arm. . . . 
F David Robinson (Chilliwack, 2007-10) will attend UBC and play for the Thunderbirds after spending the last two seasons as an assistant coach with the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. Also checking in with the Thunderbirds will be F Adam Rossignol (Kootenay, Swift Current, Regina, Portland, 2010-14). . . . Adam McKinnon is the Victoria Royals new manager of communications and hockey operations co-ordinator. He replaces Corey St. Laurent, who is leaving to join Hockey Canada. McKinnon spent two seasons in media and community relations with the ECHL’s Victoria Salmon Kings and also helped set up the Royals’ communication department before returning to Camosun College.

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