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Carter Doerksen

By Dave Leaderhouse, 04/26/18, 11:30AM CST

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Nipawin Hawks, D

Leaders are supposed to lead by example and not too many do it better than Nipawin Hawks’ captain Carter Doerksen.

A mainstay of the Nipawin blueline brigade for four years, the 5-foot-10, 187-pound Swift Current product scored his first playoff goal of the season in the biggest game of the year when he opened the scoring in the Hawks’ Canalta Cup-clinching victory over the Estevan Bruins on Tuesday.

The 20-year-old Doerksen has just five points in 16 post-season games, but his rock-solid play in his own zone is a big reason why the Hawks allowed the fewest goals during the regular season and were once again one of the stingiest in their run to their first league title in 28 years.

Doerksen has appeared in 178 regular-season games with Nipawin over the last four seasons scoring eight goals and assisting on 43 more. This past season, his final one at the junior level, was his most productive as he registered four goals and 16 helpers in 52 games.

During his time in Nipawin, Doerksen has been to the semi-final round all four years which has resulted in him appearing in 51 post-season tilts. That experience has been extremely beneficial to the team and will continue to bode well in the future as Nipawin looks to get past the Steinbach Pistons in the Anavet Cup and claim a berth in the RBC Cup to be held in Chilliwack, B.C., next month.

Prior to joining the Hawks, Doerksen spent two seasons with his hometown Swift Current Legionnaires in the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League. Doerksen was just as consistent at that level as he has shown in his time in Nipawin as he registered 17 points in 80 regular-season games while providing a little bit of grit on the back end with just under 100 minutes in penalties. With the Hawks, Doerksen has amassed 395 minutes in penalties showing he isn’t scared to get mixed up in the physical aspect of the game.

Leadership, tenacity, experience and an abundance of skill and hockey smarts is what Doerksen brings to the table each and every game and the Hawks will certainly be leaning on all of that as they look to extend their season for another month.