Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Hurricanes Training Camp Preview: The Goalies

Hurricanes Training Camp is set to kick off from the Adams Ice Centre (9th Avenue and 13th St. North) on Wednesday, August 31st. The team's Communications and Events Manager Ryan Ohashi has put together a three part training camp preview, starting with the goalies.

This year’s Training Camp is expected to play host to over 65 participants and includes 15 returning players from the Canes 2010-11 lineup. Exclusions include Swedish forward Jacob Berglund who signed a pro contract in Sweden, Alex Kuvaev who was signed to a pro contract in the Russian KHL and goaltender Dylan Tait – who signed his letter of intent to play at the University of Lethbridge this fall. Returning Forwards Ryon Moser and Neil Tarnasky were both released this past summer. Other departures include overage graduates Max Ross (who will attend the University of Calgary), 2011 Captain Mike Reddington and Mitch Maxwell (Who is set to depart for his mission in West Virginia).

In the first of a three part series, we preview just a few of the names to look for in the Hurricanes cage now and in the future:

Hurricanes veteran Brandon Anderson will begin the season as the Hurricanes starting goaltender and is expected to flourish as a 19 year old starter. That being said Anderson will challenged by a mixed group of draft picks and prospects this season. A fiery competitor from Langley, BC – Anderson made the most of an NHL camp invite last season and inked an entry level contract with the Washington Capitals. He continued to develop last season – posting a 17-26-5-7 record with a 3.77 GAA and a 0.888 sv % - Anderson accounted for 17 of the Canes 23 wins last season and totaled up over 1600 saves.

The battle for the Canes other goaltending spot falls to a group of bright young rookies led by breakout goaltender Tanner Kovacs. Kovacs showed great promise and was listed by the Canes after a solid 2009 Training Camp. This season the 94-born youngster exploded onto the scene in the Alberta Midget Hockey League leading the AMHL with a 1.95 GAA and an impressive 0.925 save percentage. Hurricanes 4th round pick and fifth selection in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft – 95-born Ryan Ferguson will attend his second WHL camp. Ironically, the now 6’2 tall Ferguson is the Canes highest drafted goaltender since 2007 when the club drafted Anderson with the 50th overall selection in the third round. Christopher Tai was listed following Training Camp last season – The B.C. native will also be attending his second WHL camp.

One of the great storylines coming out of the 2011 Bantam Draft this summer was the selection of local product Jonny Hogue who will be attending his first WHL camp this year. Hogue, was selected by the Canes in the 8th round (158th overall) and has history with the club as a former Hurricanes stick boy. The homegrown talent backstopped the Lethbridge Val Matteotti Golden Hawks this past season where he posted an .894 save percentage with a 3.93 GAA while also playing the second most minutes in the AMBHL with 1405. He then followed that up with a very solid showing at the Alberta Cup in Lethbridge earning a late round selection.

Veteran: Brandon Anderson (92)
Rookie (s) to watch: Tanner Kovacs (94), Ryan Ferguson (95), Christopher Tai (95)
2011 WHL Draft Picks Attending 1st Camp: Jonny Hogue (96)

Be sure to visit LethbridgeHurricanes.com for daily Hurricanes 2011 Training Camp news – full camp lists will be made available following player registration. Scrimmages will begin on Thursday before the players are divided into three teams of rookies and veterans for the weekend inter squad games with a wrap up on Sunday morning with a Championship game. Fans are encouraged to attend camp to get their first look at the 2010-11 Hurricanes – On Saturday and Sunday, volunteers from the Lethbridge United Way will be on hand to take donations upon entry for this worthwhile cause.

Don't forget to follow us on twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/WHLHurricanes

2011 Training Camp Schedule:

Wednesday August 31
3:00 – 5:00 Registration – All Players
5:00 – 5:30 Player/ Parent Orientation
6:00 – 7:00 Team A Practice
7:15 – 8:15 Team B Practice

Thursday September 1 - Open to Public
9:30 – 11:00 Team A vs. Team B
12:00 – 2:00 Practice : All other players
3:00 – 4:30 Team B vs. Team A
5:30 – Team Event (Closed)

Friday September 2 - Open to Public
8:00 – 9:45 Team Red vs. Team Blue
12:45 – 2:30 Team Red vs. Team White
5:30 – 7:15 Team Blue vs. Team White

Saturday September 3 - Open to Public
8:00 – 9:45 Team White vs. Team Red
12:45 – 2:30 Team White vs. Team Blue
5:30 – 7:15 Team Blue vs. Team Red

Sunday September 4 - Open to Public
8:30 – 9:30 Practice 3rd Place Team
11:00 – 12:45 Championship Game

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