Dale Hladun instructs the Wranglers during a preseason practice on Sept. 4. The team will have a lot of new faces this season. Brendan Kyle Jure photo.

100 Mile House Wranglers beat Kamloops Storm 4-1 in first exhibition game of the season

The Wranglers team is shaping up for opening day on Sept. 14

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League’s (KIJHL) 100 Mile House Wranglers are in the middle of training camp and preparing for their upcoming season, starting with their home opener against the Princeton Posse on Sept. 14.

“Camp was small and competitive, I thought it went well,” said Dale Hladun, general manager and head coach, who is still biding his time to lure released Junior A players to the team. “In all fairness, I don’t like to bring in a whole bunch of kids and then release a bunch of guys because the players you want are still at a higher level whether it’s the Western Hockey League (WHL) or Junior A.”

He went on to say that training camps for the Wranglers and other northern and rural-based teams are different than their counterparts in Kelowna and the Lower Mainland, where there is a lot more access to players and younger aged-kids who only attend camp to get some ice time before they go back to minor hockey.

RELATED: 100 Mile Wranglers still in the mix despite large youth intake

The British Columbian Hockey League (BCHL), the only Junior A league in the province, has already ended it’s pre-season and their regular season will start on Sept. 7, meaning some players have already been released or cut from the 17 teams that make up the league.

Hladun will be looking at some of those players.

The Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) and Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) are still in the thick of their preseason but Hladun has already managed to lure a defenceman from the AJHL’s Grand Prairie Storm.

Jayce Schweizer played for the Chase Heat in the KIJHL last season, playing in 40 games in the regular season and four in the Heat’s playoff run. The 18-year-old Prince George native joined the Wranglers on Sept. 4.

Hladun said he is also looking at another player who is currently at a camp for one of the Albertan teams but declined to say who.

RELATED: 100 Mile House Wranglers announce new captain for 2018-19 season

The Wranglers also played an exhibition game against the Kamloops Storm on Sept. 2 at the McArthur Island Sports & Events Centre, which they won 4-1.

“We dressed a lot of the young kids from camp to have a look at them. Some of the kids won’t make the team but they certainly could in the future,” said Hladun. “It was good, I think they competed well.”

Jakob Gullmes, the Wranglers new 16-year-old goalie from Pitt Meadows, had a strong first half behind the pipes. During the second half of the game, Blake Simpson came into the net and didn’t let any pucks get in the net.

Defenceman Jaxon Passeri also caught Hladun’s eye.

RELATED: The 100 Mile House Wranglers Golf Tournament brings old friends together again

“I thought he was very clever on the backend – smart, smooth puck-moving defenceman. I thought he and Ben Keon showed very well on the power play moving the puck,” he said.

Other young and new players are Dylan Carr and Tristan Williams.

Fans of the Wranglers should also expect forward Garrett Hilton to take up more of a leadership role this year after he took some of the younger players under his wing.

“He took charge. There’s always things you forget as a coach to prepare for the first game, just because it’s been a while. Garret just took charge and he went over how the warm-ups should be, he talked to the new kids about what the referees are going to call and little things to watch,” said Hladun. “I was really happy with Garrett. It’s good to see him have a leadership role at the club.”


brendan.jure@100milefreepress.net
https://twitter.com/BrendanKyleJure

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Trio of business workshops coming to South Cariboo

Workshops cover attracting and retaining staff, motivational interviewing and bridging the age gap

South Cariboo CMHA holding suicide prevention training

‘Our goal is to make 100 Mile House a safer place to live’

United Way brings outdoor movie night to 100 Mile House

Movie and snacks will be free for everybody

How the Bensons thrive through life-threatening disease

‘I think the first time anyone gets cancer and hears the C-word you think it’s a death sentence’

U.S. congressman issues dire warning to Canada’s NAFTA team: time is running out

Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is expected to resume talks with the U.S.

Researchers tag great white shark in Atlantic Canada

Information will be used to learn more about where white sharks move in Canadian waters

Mix-up of bodies leads to funeral home reforms in Nova Scotia

One woman was was mistakenly cremated, another was embalmed and presented to family members during a visitation that went horribly wrong

B.C. RCMP turn to Const. Scarecrow to shock speeders into slowing down

New addition will watch over drivers from a Coquitlam median for first-of-its-kind pilot in Canada

Cyclists finish North America trip to highlight Ukraine struggle

The 10,000 bike ride raised over $10,000 for victims of the war in Ukraine.

21 new paramedics promised for B.C. Interior

A total of 18 new full-time paramedics will be hired for Kamloops and three are being hired for Chase.

Federal stats show slight increase in irregular migrant claims in August

113 extra people tried to cross the Canadian border last month

Work begins to remove cargo from grounded Haida Gwaii barge and fishing lodge

Westcoast Resorts’ Hippa Lodge broke from its moorings and ran aground early this month

Most Read