By Mike Stackhouse
1998 G Declan Hobbs (Saskatoon SK)
1998 D Gage Misskey (Melfort SK)
2000 F Jake Tremblay (Pense SK)
1999 F Jordan Simoneau (Tisdale SK)
1999 F Jeremy Bisson (Moose Jaw SK)
1998 F Christian Bosa (Langley BC)
The defending champs don’t bring a lot back from a year ago, but goalie Declan Hobbs is a great piece to start with. He’s an all-star calibre netminder and has a ton of experience behind a brand new defense that will miss standout Josh McDougall (NCAA). Tremblay and Simoneau are the lone returning forwards who were amongst the top forwards from a year ago, but head coach Doug Johnson always finds a way to introduce us to a new star or two every year.
OTHER PLAYERS TO WATCH:
1999 G Patrick Pugliese (Pasadena CA USA) comes from The Loomis Chaffee School of USHS-Prep and had good numbers (2.36, .912).
1998 F Arik Breton (Stittsville ON) Comes to Nipawin with a lot of experience and a chance to tap into his offensive game as a 20-year-old (47-7-13-20) after playing with Carleton Place and Navan in the CCHL.
2000 D Jack Lenchyshyn (Steinbach MB) Picked up from Steinbach MJHL after 1-goal and 7-assists in 38-games with the Pistons. He also got into a couple of playoff games and has a chance to be a key defender for the Hawks.
2000 D Luke Penner (Saskatoon SK) 3-goals and 7-assists in 35-games with the Contacts AAA. He got into a playoff game with the Hawks last year.
2000 F Austen Flaman (Emerald Park SK) A last minute addition in a trade with Yorkton, he has top six potential. 40-6-9-15 as a 17-year-old rookie on a last place club.
1999 F Carson Erhardt (Penticton BC) 6’1” forward who played 40-games with Bonnyville AJHL and contributed 6-goals and 5-assists.
1999 F Colton Nikiforuk (Maple Ridge BC) A Junior ‘B’ player with the Chase Heat KIJHL, it’s hoped he can translate a bit of what he produced last year at the Junior ‘A’ level (43-17-14-31).
2000 F Eric Sorensen (Grande Prairie AB) Already has a lot of experience (50 games) at the Junior ‘A’ level despite being first year eligible this season. He was 39-2-3-5 with Grande Prairie Storm AJHL.
2000 F Zak Yewchuk (Calgary AB) A large body at 6’5”, he will need to fill out his frame. 32-4-8-12 with Calgary North Stars AAA.
2002 F Jaxsen Wiebe (Moose Jaw SK) Has stood out in camp and been a big surprise. He was 41-7-9-16 as a 15-year-old rookie at the MIdget AAA level with the Generals.
2000 F Brodie Girod (Saskatoon SK) 11-goals and 10-assists in 44-games with the Contacts AAA.