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Thursday, September 30, 2010

October 1, 2010 newsletter ready!

In this edition of the newsletter, we continue to update rosters and player movement as it becomes available across all bantam leagues. We take a look at the top 150 for 96 born which reflect the opening 2 weeks of the ambhl. Also the 97 born list is updated.

Had a chance to speak with top prospect Tyler Sandhu who tells us what his plans on for WHL vs. NCAA. Also, I chatted with 6'2 Earl Webb who is a WHL power forward in the making. I spoke with scoring star Keifer Hintz who will take his big time talent to Unity in the Centre Four Hockey League and we speak to diamond in the rough Dalton cook who will play for the very good Elkhorn program in Manitoba AA.

Plus, we rank the Top 10 players to watch in the Greater Saskatoon Hockey League..

Monday, September 27, 2010

Bisons MacMaster Western Elite player of the week

The Western Elite Hockey Prospects player of the week is Calgary Bisons forward Tanner MacMaster.

MacMaster picked up 10 goals and 2 assists to go along with 2 pims, in four games in the start of the ambhl hockey season.

MacMaster opened the season with a pair of goals vs. the Calgary Bronks. He then followed that up with 3 goals and 1 assist over Airdrie on September 22nd in a 6-4 win. Tanner continued to score with another goal in a 6-3 vs. upstart Lethbridge and then on Sunday MacMaster had 4 goals and 1 assist in a 12-6 win over Red Deer.

MacMaster, who is expected to be a first round draft pick is a 5'8 135lb forward who is expected to lead the Calgary Bisons far this season in the ambhl.

The goalie of the week is Jonathon Hogue from the Lethbridge Golden Hawks. Jonathon posted a 3-0-0 record with a 2.00 gaa and a .938 save percentage, facing 91 shots.


Yesterday's bantam highlites......

Tanner MacMaster scored 4 goals and 1 assist, Brayden Point 1 goal and 4 assists, leading the Calgary Bisons to a 12-6 win over Red Deer White. 1997 born Nick Merkely, the brother of last year first rounder Jonathon Merkley scored another 2 goals. For Red Deer, Ty Mappin picked up 3 goals, giving him 5. Calgary fired 41 shots on goal in the game.

Cavin Leth continue his early season dominance with 2 goals and 1 assist en route to a 4-3 win over Airdrie. Tyler Wong was held off the score sheet for Airdrie but Kyle Pauls continued to do well scoring 2 more. Airdrie out shot Lethbridge 39-31 in a battle of 2 of the better teams in the south.

Also over the weekend Leduc played Grand Prairie in a pair of games defeating them by scores of 16-1 and 5-4. Several players scored 2 goals in the 16-1 victory but Braden Yakubowski scored 3 while adding 2 assists. Liam Gregor had a goal and 4 assists. The Grand Prairie goalies let up 16 goals on 45 shots. While on Sunday, Gregor and Chorney each picked up a pair of points while defenceman Evan Polei had 2 goals and 1 assist in the 5-4 win. Tyler Hartmen scored a pair of goals in the losing cause.

SSAC played a pair of low scoring games over the weekend....First off, they tied Edmonton MLAC 2-2 and then defeated Edmonton KC 4-0. In the game vs. MLAC, Aaron Irving and Zachary scored. For MLAC, Tyler Olthuizen and Masen Presisniuk each had a goal and an assist. On Sunday vs. KC, the line of Simpson, Queenville and Ortynski combined for 8 pts with Simpson scoring 2 goals. Jordan Papirny turned aside 24 shots for the shutout.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Saturday night in the bantam ranks....

Starting off in the ambhl, the Okotoks Oilers (1-2-0) upset the Calgary Northstars 5-3 (1-1-0). Leading the way for the Oilers was 96 born standout Connor Bleackley with 1 goal and 3 assists. Bleackley now has 4 goals and 4 assists in 3 games along with 20 penalty minutes. Mason McCarty (97 born) scored a goal and an assist, doubling both of those totals. For the Northstars, Alex Ruel-Garvey once again scored for the second game in a row, giving him 2 on the season. Michael Conrad for Okotoks turned away 29/32 shots for the win.

In Red Deer, the Red Deer White (0-2-1) was defeated by the Calgary Bronks (1-1-0) by a score of 4-1. For the Bronks, Hudson Elynuik led the way with a pair of goals, giving him 3 for the season, he also added an assist. Sam Young continued his hot start with another 3 point night with a goal and 2 assists, giving him 3-3-6 in 2 games. Red Deer's lone goal was scored by standout defenceman Ty Mappin. Mappin leads Red Deer with 2 goals and 10 pims this season. In goal, Riley Morris turned aside 22/23 shots for the win.

In Fort Saskatchewan at the JRC, the home squad Fort Saskatchewan Rangers (0-1-0) were soundly defeated by the Spruce Grove PAC Saints (2-0-0) by a score of 6-1. Thomas Foster led the way with a pair of goals, giving him 3 on the season. Defenceman Jamie Vermeulen, forwards Dexter Hanas, Michael Cardinal and Jason Miller all had a goal and 1 assist. Matt McNeil had 3 assists, giving him 5 points in 2 games this season. The lone Fort Sask. goal was scored by super pest Ryley Wozniak. The winning goaltender was Mathew Meek-White who faced just 15 shots in the victory.

In Medicine Hat, The Calgary Royals (2-1-0) hammered the Medicine Hat Hockey Hounds (0-2-1) by a score of 10-1. For the Royals, Reid Duke had a whopping 4 goals and 1 assists, giving him 5-5-10 in 3 games to lead the scoring race early on. Defenceman Clive Rozdeba had a goal and 2 assists, his first points of the season. Jordan Evans had a goal and 3 assissts, also his first points of the season. Josh McCulloch had 3 points, giving him 8 for the season. The winning goalie was Jacob Ruissen, turning aside 14/15 shots.

The marquis game of the day occured in Lethbridge where the Lethbridge Golden Hawks (3-0-0) skated by the Calgary Bisons (2-1-0) 6-3. For the Hawks, Laramie Kostelansky fired a hat trick, his first 3 of the season. While early season standout Cavin Leth had a goal and 3 assists giving him 3-4-7 in 3 games to start the season. Jared Broderson chipped in with 3 assists, giving him 0-6-6 so far. Lethbridge won despite missing one of their top players Brendon Benson. For the Bisons, Nick Merkley (97 born) led the way with a pair of goals, he now has 4-1-5 in 3 games. While Tanner MacMaster continues to lead the way for the Bisons with another goal, giving him a league leading 6 in 3 games. Winning goalie, Aspen Pitre was a difference maker turning aside 38/41 shots for the win.

Late action from Friday night saw the Sherwood Park Flyers (1-0-0) defeat Edmonton CAC (0-1-0) 6-2. Leading the way for the Flyers were Noah Keiser and Tyler Robertson each with a a pair of goals. Tyler Pollock and River Beattie each chipped in with a pair of assists in the victory. Cameron Hughes had a goal and one assist for CAC. Flyers goalie Trevor Martin had a quiet night turning aside 11/13 shot for the win.

Moving over to BC bantam hockey now, the BWC Bruins defeated the Abbotsford Hawks in a pre-season showdown 5-0. Jake Virtanen was given a 10 min misconduct in the game for the Hawks, while Mathew Barzal scored a pair of goals for the the Bruins. Nick McBride and Nic Bruyere split the game for the Bruins. The two teams meat again on Thursday. In other action, POE defeated Kelowna 5-1. Mick, Kelm and Funk were a force all game long for POE. Seafair was defeated 2-1 by NSWC as well.

In Saskatchewan, Notre Dame skated by Moose Jaw 10-2 while Martinsville defeated Swift Current 4-3. Also, the Prince Albert Venice House Pirates who are going to be a team to watch this season in western Canada have a 3-0-0 pre season record thus far outscoring their oppenants 32-17.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Wednesday bantam notes...

Bantam action continued last night in the ambhl, one of the only leagues to have begun already.

Lethbridge shut out the Red Deer Black team by a score of 4-0. Leading the way for Lethbridge was Brendan Benson with 1 goal and 1 assists, Benson is quickly proving he is a player to be reckoned with this season. Benson now has 2 goals and 3 points in 2 games. Jonathon Hogue picked up the shut out.

In other ambhl action, the Calgary Royals evened their record at 1-1 after defeating Okotoks 6-3. Okotoks may not win very many games this season but a player to watch will be Connor Bleackley who once again led the way with 1 goal and 1 assist, while 97 born pint sized player Mason McCarty also had a goal and an assist. For the Royals, Reid Duke led the way with 1 goal and 2 assists. We have Duke rated as a first round talent for the 2011 WHL bantam draft. Josh McCulloch also picked up a goal and 2 assists giving him 5 points in just 2 games.

And finally, in an early season showdown, the Calgary Bisons met the Airdrie Xtreme. Both teams are thought to be at or near the top of the AMBHL south. The Bisons were able to squeak by the Xtreme 6-4 on Wednesday night though. Leading the way for Airdrie was Mackenzie Bauer with a goal and 2 assists, Tyler Wong once again scored and Kyle Pauls continued his early season success with a pair of assists. For the Bisons, Tanner Macmaster picked up a hat-trick and added an assist, while Brycen Martin picked up another 2 assists, giving him 5 in just 2 games. Brayden Point was held to just 1 assist in the game, giving him 3 points on the season. Alex Mowbray continue to show he will be a player to watch with 1 goal and 1 assist.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

News and Notes

The rosters are slowly trickling in from around western Canada for bantam teams. As mentioned in an earlier post, most of the south portion of the ambhl have posted rosters and now a few of the North teams are as well. Something that really jumps out are the number of 1997 born or first year bantams on the North teams this year. Either that explains the lack of depth in the 96 age group or the power of the 97 age group in the North. I think I'll stick with the latter! Of note, the Lloydminster Heat who are usually near the bottom are starting to have some of the kids who dominated the peewee ranks for a couple years jump to bantam now. Andrew Koep, who we have rated as a first round talent for the 2012 WHL bantam draft is on the roster and his defensive team-mate Kale Clague. What is so special about Clague? Well, he is a 5'10 140lb 1998 born who should be still playing peewee hockey, but the kid is exceptional and will be one of the better puck moving defenseman depsite being just 12 yrs old playing mostly 14 yr olds! Clague though will have to wait 2-3 weeks to play due to an injured foot he hurt in football on Monday.

Also of note from the North is CAC's roster that features four 1997 born players who have all had great peewee hockey success. Dylan Stewart, Brayden Burke, Andrew Marshall and defenseman Justin Greer are the four who will try to make CAC competitive but CAC is still likely a year away from perhaps making some noise in the north.

In Saskatoon, the Greater Saskatoon Hockey league draft is taking place for the peewee and bantam age groups. Stay tuned for some roster analysis when they are complete. Also of note in the GSHL is that one of the top offensive players and first round talent Kolten Olynek has injured his shoulder and will miss between 3 and 5 weeks.

Getting back to the AMBHL for a moment, It sounds as though St. Albert bruiser Zach Gonek could be suspended for up to 8 games due to his shenanigans during an exhibition game in which he snapped as one source put it. Hopefully Gonek can control his emotions and put all that great talent to use in what could be a first round talent.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Duperreault with huge night

Ben Duperreault with a huge night en route to a 6-6 tie against Weyburn in South Sask Bantam League action from Monday night. The 1996 draft eligable star tallied a goal and four assists. Ben is ranked currently in the 4th round for the bantam draft which takes place in May.
We're currently in the process of putting together our initial western elite hockey prospects Top 10 bantam rankings. The rankings will include all league teams with the exception of the Notre Dame Hounds who are a "AAA" team playing in the South Sask Bantam Hockey League which is a "AA" league. Also we won't include any of the prep schools such as: Edge School in Calgary, OHA or Pursuit of Excellence.

The rankings will be on hold until the rosters become finalized, hopefully in this next week or so. The Greater Saskatoon Hockey League held there training camps over the weekend and should have league rosters drafted this week. As well, many rosters in the Centre Four Hockey League have yet to be filed as of yet and same go's for the South Sask Bantam Hockey League. Many of the Winnipeg Bantam Hockey League and the rural rosters in Manitoba have yet to be filed either. However, leagues in British Columbia and in Alberta have already gotten underway. The AMBHL south portion got well underway over the weekend and the North part will get underway this week.

Speaking of the North, there was a pre-season tournament which took place over the weekend. Many of the teams in the North took part in the tournament which was a final chance for many to showcase their talents. To nobodies surprise Sherwood Park, Leduc and SSAC were the top teams with SSAC going undefeated. SSAC and Leduc will meet in the final.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bantam tidbits

The AMBHL or Albert Major Bantam Hockey League got underway this weekend.

The Calgary Bisons, who are the early season favorites to come out of the province flexed their muscle with a 7-6 win over the Calgary Bronks. Tanner Macmaster who we have ranked to go in the top two rounds of the WHL bantam draft scored twice, as did 6'2 power forward Earl Webb. Brycen Martin chipped in with 3 assists in the winning effort. Sam Young led the way for the Bronks with a pair of goals and one assist in the losing cause.

Elsewhere in the AMBHL, perennial favorites, Airdrie Xtreme walked past Okotoks 7-3. Leading the way for the Xtreme was Kyle Pauls with 3 goals, while first round talent Tyler Wong had a goal and 2 assists.

The Bisons and Xtreme will face each other in an early season clash of favorites in the south portion of the AMBHL on Wednesday. The north won't get underway until Thursday when Camrose will visit Spruce Grove.

Speaking of Spruce Grove, Thomas Foster has shown very well in the pre-season. His skating is very strong, see's the ice well and by all accounts has been the best player on the team so far.

Leduc has looked very strong through the pre-season and many feel they could be the best team in the division. To nobodies surprise SSAC has looked tremendous thus far, they beat KofC 5-3 and rolled four lines. However, their top line played 25+ minutes and are said to be top heavy in terms of talent up front with Quennville, Simpson and Ortynski who are all top round talents. Defence looks to be led by Patterson and Donald. Of course, Jordan Papirny in net will give them the best goaltending in the north. As you remember, Papirny was named a first team all-star as a first year bantam player last year.

Keenan Shaw is a man amongst boys so far in the early going. He has been putting up points and really laying the body hard. Shaw's team mate from KofC, Nicholas Jones is leaving defenders mesmerized so far and could lead the league in scoring. It is expected that he will be named team captain. A tough break though for KofC in that 97 born first year talent Joseph Nardi cracked a collar bone and will miss 4-6 week. It was reported from camp that he was looking like the teams #2 forward behind Jones.

Looks as though MLAC could be in for a long season. If presiniuk and first year talent Simon Goodall don't step up their game a few notches, many feel they will likely end up near the bottom. Something to watch anyway...

Of note in the BC bantam ranks is news that Joey Gatenby has made the POE Division 1 team. He will be the lone 1997 born on the roster this season. POE looks to have a very strong team and the 5'6 125 lb youngster is definitely someone to watch early on.

In other news, Cloverdale beat favorite to win the PCAHA bantam tier 1 Abbotsford Hawks 6-5 despite being out shot 50-25. It should be noted that Abbotsford was missing several key players which included Mitch Skapski, Malik Kaila and Matt Revel. For Cloverdale, Riley Stadel was a pure force in the game all night long scoring a goal and assisting on 3 others.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

September 17, 2010 newsletter coming

In this edition, we will take a look at the Centre Four Hockey League and preview all 9 teams. Once again we will have a series of interviews profiling the top 1996 born kids in Western Canada and preview an American 96 born who is the off-spring of a notorious agitator from his days in the NHL, will he or won't he come? And of course a final look at the Top 150 prior to the start of most bantam leagues and a look at some of the top 97 born kids listed.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Warkentine and Duret shine

The WHL bantam draft is still eight months away, but two kids making a huge case for themselves to be noticed are Myles Warkentine and Ryan Duret from Prince Albert. Warkentine, whose family has relocated from Melfort has joined forces with rising star Ryan Duret to form a lethal 1-2 scoring punch that the Prince Albert Venice House Pirates will reap the benefits from this season.

A sneak peak at the two last night in a Midget hockey game against the Beardy's Black Hawks suggest that when they return to bantam hockey this season, that they are sure to wreak havoc on the rest of the Centre Four Hockey League. Warkentine scored a pair of goals in his first ever midget game and his line mate Ryan Duret chipped in with a pair of assists for the Prince Albert Mintos en route to a 5-0 pre-season victory.

The Mintos take to the ice once again tonight vs. the Saskatoon Blazers.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Top 10 Saskatoon Bantam players to watch

In a poll just completed with several sources and hockey minds in and around Saskatoon who follow the GSHL, we came up with a list of the top 10 players to watch for the 2010-2011 hockey season.

To nobody's suprise, the top two from almost all posters were Rourke Chartier and Kolten Olynek.

1. Rourke Chartier (F). Small, but all he does is rack up huge numbers and make his teammates better. Very slippery, his main strength is his ability to find his teammates in scoring areas combined with a good scoring touch around the net.

2. Kolten Olynek (F). Speed. Speed. And more speed. This Jr Blades alum's first three strides are unparalleled in the GSHL, allowing him to separate from his opposition almost at will. Once free, he has a wide array of shots and moves he can use on the goaltender. While not a large player, he does play with a certain edge. If there's a flaw in his game it's in not always utilizing his line mates to their best potential.

for the rest of the list, please refer to the newsletter.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

September 3, 2010 newsletter is ready!

The September 3, 2010 newsletter is now ready. This issue once again has the Top 150for the 1996 age group, a Top 60 list for the 1997 group. Also, we conducted several interviews from some of the top players around western Canada.

I had a chance to speak with Souris, Manitoba hockey star Jordan Thomson, who many in the scouting world consider one of the top, if not, the top prospect in his age group from Manitoba. Also chatted with Francis Bamford who says his lack of size won't hold him back. Spoke with one of the stars of the Seafair bantam program; Jake Wozney who says his team is primed for a run at a league championship. I spoke with Landyn Hickmott who is perhaps the most hidden gem of the draft coming up, playing AA in Mission, B.C.