It has been a season of ups and downs thus far for the Lethbridge Hurricanes as they continue their battle for a WHL Championship and the opportunity to play for the Memorial Cup in Rimouski. For the defending Eastern Conference Champions, the road leading up to this point has been rough, however, with only the home stretch to go the Canes have a healthy lineup and look to be peaking at just the right time. Though the following are a few of the Season highlights so far, the organization certainly hopes to add playoff success to this list before the year is done.
Following a busy summer in which the Hurricanes had seven players attend NHL camps, three players have been signed to NHL Entry level contracts. The Hurricanes current leading scorer Colton Sceviour (Dallas), the Hurricanes highest drafted forward of all time Zach Boychuk (Carolina) and Luca Sbisa (Philadelphia). Sbisa would then play 39 NHL games with the Flyers before being returned to the Hurricanes this past month.
Zach Boychuk won his second straight gold medal as a member of the National U20 World Junior team for the 2009 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships held in Ottawa this week. Juha Metsola also participated with Team Finland and was the second highest ranked goaltender based on his stats in the tournament. Metsola has totaled a club record five shutouts in 2008-09, giving him a career total of eight. The Hurricanes individual club record is nine shutouts (career). Metsola already holds the club record with a 1.98 GAA for the 07-08 season. The Hurricanes combined team shutout record of eight was set by Metsola and Michael Maniago last season
Rookie forward and Pincher Creek native Mark Reners was called up as an AP by the Canes in January, he notched his first two WHL goals in a 7-2 win over the Prince George Cougars on January 23/09. Reners was also named an AMHL Player of the Month in January as a leading goal scorer for the Lethbridge Y’s Men Titans notching 42 points (28G, 14A) in 28 games this season. Lethbridge born defenseman Max Ross was added by the Hurricanes in November and tallied his first WHL goal on November 19th against the Prince Albert Raiders. Finally, Foremost native Matt Kabayama notched his first WHL win as a Head Coach on January 23 in a 7-2 win over the Prince George Cougars.
Hurricanes leading goal scorer Carter Ashton and defenseman Brennan Yadlowski were both ranked in NHL Central Scouting Service’s Mid Term rankings for the 2009 NHL Draft. Ashton has been ranked 10th among North American skaters while Yadlowski has been ranked 153rd. Ashton also took part in the 2009 Home Hardware CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game - Jan.13-14th in Oshawa, ON
Tragically, the Hurricanes family suffered a great loss in November of 2008; as former goaltender Michael Maniago passed away in a fatal car crash. The Canes now honor Maniago’s memory for the remainder of the 08-09 season by wearing a special memorial symbol on the back of their helmets.
Kyle Beach has been a ‘man on a mission’ since arriving in Lethbridge before the WHL trade deadline. The 2008 1st round pick has tallied 22 points (12G, 10A) in fifteen games with the Canes. With the addition of Beach and the return of Luca Sbisa, the Hurricanes lineup now boasts three first round draft picks from this year’s NHL entry draft.
The Lethbridge Hurricanes/Broncos Hall of Fame inducted former Broncos Coach John Chapman as well as all six of the Sutter brothers to have played junior hockey in Lethbridge on February 20, 2009. No family in North America is more prominent in the hockey world than the Sutters. John Chapman was the Head Coach of the Lethbridge Broncos from 1980 – 1986, during that time he posted a career winning percentage of 0.563 and over 200 wins. The six Sutter brothers played for the Lethbridge Broncos between the years of 1974-1983. Brian, Darryl, Duane, Brent, Rich and Ron collectively played in over 5,000 NHL games, won six Stanley Cups, scored 2,922 points (1,316 goals, 1, 606 assists), had over 8000 combined penalty minutes.
Stormfront Stats (as of Feb. 20/09)
Scoring Leaders: Colton Sceviour (24G, 43A), Kyle Beach (21G, 31A) and Dwight King (19G, 31A) are the Hurricanes current scoring leaders. While Lethbridge native Mitch Versteeg is having a career season, leading all Hurricanes d-men with 26 points (7G, 19A) tripling his previous season high.
Other Leaders: Carter Ashton currently leads all Hurricanes with 27 goals and nine power play goals; Colton Sceviour - 43 assists; Dwight King – 4 SHG; Zach Boychuk - +16 +/-; Kyle Beach - 138 penalty minutes; Brennan Yadlowski – 60 Games played.
The Hurricanes currently have six WHL rookies in their lineup: F - Garrett Taylor, D – Cody Castro, D – Max Ross, D – Derek Ryckman, G – Michael Tadjdeh, F - Brody Sutter and eight players in their draft year of 2009: F – Carter Ashton, F – Cam Braes, F – Austin Fyten, F – Brent Henke, F – Craig Orfino, G – Michael Tadjdeh, F – Garrett Taylor, D – Brennan Yadlowski
Powered by Max Banner Ads