Thursday, September 8, 2016

2016-17 West Kelowna Warriors Season Preview:

West Kelowna Warriors
Head Coach: Rylan Ferster (6th year)
2015-16 record: 38-17-2-1, 79 points (2nd in the Interior Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Jonathan Desbiens (83 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Connor Sodergren (30 points)
2016 playoffs: Won BCHL Fred Page Cup Championship, Western Canada Cup, and Royal Bank Cup
2016-17 Division: Interior
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Trail
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Trail
Twitter: @BCHLWarriors

2016-17 Wenatchee Wild Season Preview:

Wenatchee Wild
Head Coach: Bliss Littler (2nd year)
2015-16 record: 34-16-4-4, 76 points (2nd in the Mainland Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Brendan Harris (56 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Brendan Harris (56 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Mainland Division Final to Chilliwack, 4 games to 1
2016-17 Division: Mainland
First regular season game: Wednesday, September 14 vs. Prince George
Home opener: Friday, September 30 vs. Langley
Twitter: @WenatcheeWild1

2016-17 Victoria Grizzlies Season Preview:

Victoria Grizzlies
Head Coach: Craig Didmon (3rd year)
2015-16 record: 24-30-4-0, 52 points (5th in the Island Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Brayden Gelsinger (61 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Cole Pickup (48 points)
2016 playoffs: Did Not Qualify
2016-17 Division: Island
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Powell River
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Powell River
Twitter: @VicGrizzHockey

2016-17 Vernon Vipers Season Preview:

Vernon Vipers
Head Coach: Mark Ferner (3rd year)
2015-16 record: 24-31-3-0, 51 points (4th in the Interior Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Odeen Tufto (65 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Jimmy Lambert (33 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Interior Division Semi-Final to Penticton, 4 games to 1
2016-17 Division: Interior
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Salmon Arm
Home opener: Saturday, September 10 vs. Salmon Arm
Twitter: @VernonVipers

2016-17 Trail Smoke Eaters Season Preview:

Trail Smoke Eaters
Head Coach: Cam Keith (1st year)
2015-16 record: 23-33-2-0, 48 points (6th in the Interior Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Nick Halloran (45 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Ross Armour (35 points)
2016 playoffs: Did Not Qualify
2016-17 Division: Interior
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. West Kelowna
Home opener: Saturday, September 10 vs. West Kelowna
Twitter: @BCHLSmokeEaters

2016-17 Surrey Eagles Season Preview:

Surrey Eagles
Head Coach: Blaine Neufeld (4th year)
2015-16 record: 7-48-1-2, 17 points (6th in the Mainland Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Kurt Black (44 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Paul McAvoy (32 points)
2016 playoffs: Did Not Qualify
2016-17 Division: Mainland
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Coquitlam
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Coquitlam
Twitter: @SurreyEagles

2016-17 Salmon Arm SilverBacks Season Preview:

Salmon Arm SilverBacks
Head Coach: Brandon West (3rd year)
2015-16 record: 29-20-5-4, 67 points (3rd in the Interior Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Taro Hirose (71 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Carson Bolduc (56 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Interior Division Semi-Final to West Kelowna, 4 games to 2
2016-17 Division: Interior
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Vernon
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Vernon
Twitter: @SASilverbacks

2016-17 Prince George Spruce Kings Season Preview:

Prince George Spruce Kings
Head Coach: Chad Van Diemen (2nd year)
2015-16 record: 14-38-4-2, 34 points (5th in the Mainland Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Matthew Stief (43 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Kyle Johnson (41 points)
2016 playoffs: Did Not Qualify
2016-17 Division: Mainland
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Merritt
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Merritt
Twitter: @SpruceKings

2016-17 Penticton Vees Season Preview:

Penticton Vees
Head Coach: Fred Harbinson (10th year)
2015-16 record: 50-7-0-1, 101 points (1st in the Interior Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Scott Conway (116 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Nicholas Jones (63 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Interior Division Final to West Kelowna, 4 games to 2
2016-17 Division: Interior
First regular season game: Saturday, September 10 vs. Prince George
Home opener: Saturday, October 1 vs. Trail
Twitter: @PentictonVees

2016-17 Nanaimo Clippers Season Preview:

Nanaimo Clippers
Head Coach: Mike Vandekamp (6th year)
2015-16 record: 38-18-1-1, 78 points (1st in the Island Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Sheldon Rempal (110 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Spencer Hewson (24 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the BCHL Semi-Final Round Robin to Chilliwack and West Kelowna
2016-17 Division: Island
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Alberni Valley
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Alberni Valley
Twitter: @ClippersHockey

2016-17 Merritt Centennials Season Preview:

Merritt Centennials
Head Coach: Joe Martin (2nd year)
2015-16 record: 23-30-4-1, 51 points (5th in the Interior Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Colin Grannary (76 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Mike Faulkner (37 points)
2016 playoffs: Did Not Qualify
2016-17 Division: Interior
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Prince George
Home opener: Friday, September 16 vs. Trail
Twitter: @BCHLCentennials

2016-17 Langley Rivermen Season Preview:

Langley Rivermen
Head Coach: Bobby Henderson (5th year)
2015-16 record: 31-22-3-2, 67 points (3rd in the Mainland Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Matthew Graham (66 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Max Kaufman (52 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Mainland Division Semi-Final to Wenatchee, 4 games to 1
2016-17 Division: Mainland
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Chilliwack
Home opener: Friday, September 9 vs. Chilliwack
Twitter: @LangleyRivermen

2016-17 Cowichan Valley Capitals Season Preview:

Cowichan Valley Capitals
Head Coach: Bob Beatty (4th year)
2015-16 record: 27-25-3-3, 60 points (3rd in the Island Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Kade Kehoe (55 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Jared Domin (39 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Island Division Semi-Final to Powell River, 4 games to 2
2016-17 Division: Island
First regular season game: Saturday, September 10 vs. Powell River
Home opener: Saturday, September 10 vs. Powell River
Twitter: @CowichanCaps

2016-17 Coquitlam Express Season Preview:

Coquitlam Express
Head Coach: Barry Wolff (4th year)
2015-16 record: 22-29-6-1, 51 points (4th in the Mainland Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Colton Kerfoot (79 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Owen Stout (39 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Mainland Division Semi-Final to Chilliwack, 4 games to 0
2016-17 Division: Mainland
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Surrey
Home opener: Friday, October 7 vs. Langley
Twitter: @BCHLExpress

*Note that I did this interview with Barry Wolff prior to the Express trading Malik Kaila to Alberni Valley, so there's a question in reference to Coquitlam acquiring Kaila from Merritt earlier this summer.

2016-17 Chilliwack Chiefs Season Preview:

Chilliwack Chiefs
Head Coach: Jason Tatarnic (3rd year)
2015-16 record: 38-13-4-3, 83 points (1st in the Mainland Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Jordan Kawaguchi (83 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Jordan Kawaguchi (83 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the BCHL Championship Fred Page Cup Final to West Kelowna, 4 games to 2
2016-17 Division: Mainland
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Langley
Home opener: Saturday, September 17 vs. Langley
Twitter: @Chiefs_Hockey

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

2016-17 Alberni Valley Bulldogs Season Preview:

Once again this year, I've gathered interviews with personnel from all 17 BC Hockey League teams ahead of the start of the 2016-17 season. I'll post a handful each day this week, starting in alphabetical order.

Alberni Valley Bulldogs
Head Coach: Kevin Willison (5th year)
2015-16 record: 23-27-4-4, 54 points (4th in the Island Division)
2015-16 leading scorer: Chris Schutz (55 points)
2016-17 leading returning scorer: Jordan Sandhu (38 points)
2016 playoffs: Lost in the Island Division Semi-final to Nanaimo, 4 games to 1
2016-17 Division: Island
First regular season game: Friday, September 9 vs. Nanaimo
Home opener: Friday, September 16 vs. Nanaimo
Twitter: @AVBulldogs