The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League 2021-22 season begins Oct. 1. Leading into the season we are providing previews on each of the teams.
Next up are the Revelstoke Grizzlies in the Doug Birks Division. During the COVID-19 shortened season, the Grizzlies scored 15 goals en route to winning their lone two games.
Key Returnees: F- Cole Berg, Carter Bettenson, Owen Chamberland. Collin Kozijn, Ethan Mattern, Ronin Pusch, Tyden McWillis. D-Will McPhee. G-Brandon Weare, Dominic Donato.
Kozijn and Berg each had two points last season. Grizzlies Head Coach-GM Ryan Parent says Berg is a part of their leadership group and is a big, solid, two-way winger. Two seasons ago, the 20-year-old had seven goals and 13 points in 36 games.
“He’s excited to step up. Being one of the only guys from a couple of years ago, he knows the culture that we have created in our dressing room and in our program,” says Parent. “We have a good returning group. We think we have a fairly determined group and they are going to be competitive and certainly hungry to get better.”
Rookie to Watch: It’s still a feeling out period for the Grizzlies coaching staff with their rookies, but Parent is confident they have a good nucleus to work with.
Season outlook: Parent feels they are going to have to build game-by-game on acquiring that experience and utilizing the tools they have in Revelstoke to get better. They are making a conscious effort in practice and games to steadily improve the roster.
“It’s up to our group to earn what they get every game. We saw that in our first exhibition weekend. You just can’t take any night for granted and every game worth of experience that we get is important for us.”
Coach’s quote: “We want to be right there in the hunt,” says Parent. “That’s the way I look at it every year. We’re going to have to compete every night. We’re going to play with a lot of speed. We’re certainly going to be that competitive, in-your-face style of hockey every game.”
Raymond Speerbrecker – Manhattanvile College Valiants (ECAC)
Kaden Patrick- Langley Rivermen (BCHL)- Skidmore College (NEHC Division III)
Brenden Vulcano- University of Jamestown (ACHA Division I)
Sebastien Archambault – Vancouver Island University- (BCIHL)
Cody Flann- Missouri State Hockey – (ACHA Division I)
Jackson Desouza- Kelowna Rockets (WHL)
Jovan Malay- Estevan Bruins (SJHL)
Josh Singh – La Ronge Ice Wolves (SJHL)