Wranglers tied two, lost one in pre-season

Coach Dale Hladun says season begins with baby steps

Wrangler Eric Tigges relieved the pressure early in the first period of the 100 Mile House Wranglers exhibition game against the Port Moody Panthers on Sept. 4. The Panthers swarmed the host’s net throughout the game and went home with a 5-3 victory. The Wranglers were down 3-0 after 20 minutes

The 100 Mile House Wranglers and the Port Moody Panthers played to a 4-4 deadlock at the South Cariboo Rec. Centre on Sept. 3, and followed it up with a 5-3 loss on Sunday afternoon.

The home-town lads jumped out of the gate in the first period with a 3-1 lead.

However, it was 4-3 for the Wranglers at the end of the second frame, and the visitors scored the lone goal of the third stanza to knot the score at four apiece.

In the second game on Sept. 4, the Wranglers gave up three goals in the first period to the Panthers who swarmed the nets and took advantage of a young defensive corps.

The Wranglers retaliated with three goals of their own in the second period.

Fraser Dodd notched the first one with assists going to Ryan Friesen and Justin Bond.

Garrett Hilton narrowed the gap to 3-2 with assists going to Todd Bredo and Bond.

Bond tied the score at three apiece with the assist going to Cody Swann.

The Wranglers controlled the flow of the play during the second stanza, but took a few momentum-killing penalties.

Port Moody got two unanswered markers in the third for the 5-3 victory.

Both Wranglers goalies – Josh Beigel and Clay Stevenson – played well, and while the shots were not overwhelming at 31 between them as they played 30 minutes each, the Panthers shots were in close.

Both goalies made outstanding saves when one or two Panthers were in all alone on them.


Wranglers vs Grizzlies

On Sept. 6, the local boys faced off against the Revelstoke Grizzlies in Lumby and the game ended in a 4-4 deadlock.

The Wranglers went up 3-0, but the Grizzlies answered with four markers to take the lead.

The 100 Mile lads notched a goal late in the second period and there was no scoring in the third.

Wranglers Club president Tom Bachynski says it was a “greasy” game with a couple fights.

“I guess Revelstoke was looking for revenge [after last year’s playoffs].”

The Wranglers swept the Grizzlies in last year’s Doug Birks Division semifinals.

Noting this year’s scenario was similar to last year’s Main Camp, head coach/general manager Dale “Duner” Hladun says they had a small main camp because most of his guys aren’t in 100 Mile House yet. That’s because his recruits and some of last year’s players are trying out at Junior A camps.

There are a lot of players away, he explains, and there are some others he has identified who are still in the hunt for making Junior A.

“I certainly encourage them to stay at that level. The longer they can stay at a higher level, the better player we may get.

“From what we have now and the returning vets, we are going to be really high-end skill up front. On the back end, I have my eye on some defencemen, but we have get some veteran defencemen.”

Duner says he has a couple of good young D-men, but he needs some veteran blue-liners and adds they will come from trades or players who are left over after the Junior A camps.

Noting he has three good goalies in camp, Duner says the coaching staff is going to make some decisions before the regular season starts.

Noting this year’s pre-season was very similar to last year, he adds they didn’t four or five key players until the regular season was well under way.

“It takes a while for some of the kids to come. Austin Turner and Stephen Egan aren’t here yet because it costs money to play here, so they’re putting in an extra week of work.”

Duner adds all of the teams are looking for defencemen. Noting exhibition games for the Prairie teams end on Sept. 18, he says there are that many players are still going to be available.

“I’ll say our team will be really formed by the end of September or the middle of October. That’s exactly the way it was last year.”

Noting the Lower Mainland teams have been practising since Aug. 12, the coach says most of the Port Moody players are signed already.

He adds it was funny the way the Panthers were so serious about everything – calling timeouts, pulling their goaltender and challenging the refs on calls.

“And how much they cheered when they beat us. It was like they thought they were going to take the Keystone Cup with them.

“You know what. I think that is going to be a sign of the times. I think every team has marked the date on the calendar when they’re facing us. We’re going to see the A game from everybody.”


What’s ahead

The Wranglers are the defending 2015/16 Kootenay International Junior Hockey League, Cyclone Cup (British Columbia) and Keystone Cup (Western Canadian) champions and they rattled a lot of teeth and bruised a lot of bodies on their way to the titles.

Duner says he has heard teams, especially in the divisions they don’t play a lot, are loading up on size for when they play the Wranglers.

“Last year, we won it kinda like the Boston Bruins, and this year, we might have to win it like the Chicago Blackhawks.

“We have physical players – Bond, Friesen and Riley Coish are all physical –  but we also have some scary skill up front and we’ll score lots of goals. I’m really excited about this season. All we have to do is find a couple a veteran D men and we’ll get ‘er going.”


Upcoming games

The Wranglers first three games of the regular season will be on the road: Summerland Steam, Sept. 9; Princeton Posse, Sept. 10; and Sicamous Eagles on Sept. 16.

Then they host the Osoyoos Coyotes on Sept. 17 for the home season opener, with the puck dropping at 7 p.m.



Just Posted

Provincial government needs to fund search and rescue: CRD

CRD board wants NCLGA resolution calling on the province to ensure secured funding is in place for SAR groups

100 Mile House Soccer Association has more players signed up at this point than last season

Overall, the association has 140 kids signed up but the number to beat is 300

100 Mile House and District Council considers immigration pilot program

Over 30 communities will participate in Regional Entrepreneur Immigration Pilot Program

Former 100 Mile Curling Club member to represent province

Hannah Lindner played at the club from 2008 to 2015

100 Mile Bantam House Royals lose 3-1 in final

Last year, the team lost every single game. This year they won all but one.

Sparks fly as SUV speeds down wrong side of Highway 1 trying to flee RCMP

Captured on video, the vehicle headed westbound against oncoming traffic before crashing

Bobrovsky perfect as Blue Jackets blank Canucks 5-0

Vancouver shut out for 10th time this season

Story of Wet’suwet’en Chief Alfred Joseph being told

Song of the Earth on Chief Gisday’wa will be launched in Hagwilget

Houston woman gets two years for aggravated assault

Ewald pleads guilty; trial of co-accused Calvin Dyrland begins in Smithers B.C. court

Fundraising campaign launched for man caught in SilverStar avalanche

In only two days, the GoFundMe surpassed its $15,000 goal

Terror at sea: Helicopter rescues frightened cruise passengers in Norway

The Viking Sky cruise ship was carrying 1,300 passengers and crew when it experienced engine trouble

Search and rescue team helicopters injured climber from B.C. provincial park

A 30-year-old woman suffered a suspected lower-limb fracture in Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park

DOJ: Trump campaign did not co-ordinate with Russia in 2016

Attorney General William Barr said special counsel “does not exonerate” Trump of obstructing justice

Trudeau in Vancouver to support Tamara Taggart at Liberal nomination event

The former broadcaster is seeking the nomination for the Vancouver Kingsway riding

Most Read