The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League succeeded at its combined Showcase event this week with the Manitoba Junior Hockey League.
Three SJHL squads stocked with top talent from around the league competed against their MJHL counterparts on Tuesday and Wednesday. For the first time, the SJHL-MJHL Showcase was held in Winnipeg. The SJHL teams went 4-2 at the event. Scouts from a variety of higher levels of hockey were in attendance.
“It was a great three days of exposure for the players from both leagues,” Broncos head coach Scott Barney said. “It gives them another chance to showcase their talent against other elite players so the schools can see where they sit. “The event was very well organized and, from our standpoint, all of our players really enjoyed the Showcase.”
Melfort Mustangs goaltender James Venne called the Showcase an “amazing experience” and said it was “a great opportunity to show what kind of talent we got here in the SJ.” In addition to the on-ice action, Venne said:
“I think that it was really cool to meet and talk to players from other teams. Being able to discuss how things are at other clubs, meet a whole new group of guys that are all striving for the same thing we are, and to talk about previous games between each other was really fun.”
SJHL 20U Gold 6, MJHL 20U Black 0
The Battlefords North Stars’ Kian Bell scored half of his team’s goals as it downed 20U Black. He was tabbed as the SJHL’s player of the game. Melfort Mustangs forward Dawson Leroux lit the lamp twice while North Star Steven Kesslering also scored. Estevan Bruins goalie Cam Hrdlicka made 35 saves. Holden Doell of the North Stars recorded three assists.
MJHL 20U Red 4, SJHL 20U White 2
The MJHL side rallied from a 2-1 first period deficit to prevail. Alex Saretzky of the Humboldt Broncos and the Flin Flon Bombers’ Jeremi Tremblay scored. The Bombers’ Harmon Laser-Hume made 48 saves. Cage Newans of the Humboldt Broncos was his side’s player of the game.
SJHL 18U Blue 8, MJHL 18U White 2
The SJHL team led 2-0 and 6-0 at the intermissions. The Bombers’ Alexi Sylvestre scored twice Also scoring for the winners were Broncos Xavier Roy, Carsten Kayter and Matthew Van Blaricom; the North Stars’ Jackson Allan; Weyburn Red Wing Ty Mason; and Jag Phangura of the Estevan Bruins. Venne stopped 34 of the 36 shots he faced and was named the SJHL player of the game.
SJHL 20U Gold 4, MJHL 20U Red 1
Battlefords goalie Josh Kotai stopped all but one of the 29 shots he faced. Melfort’s Ryan Duguay, Kesslering of the North Stars, Flin Flon’s Jaxon Martens, and Ryley Morgan of the Red Wings scored. Kesslering was the SJHL’s player of the game.
MJHL 20 Black 4, SJHL 20U White 0
La Ronge goalie Dawson Smith made 25 saves. The MJHL’s Tresor Wotton had 22 saves in the shutout. Currently playing for the Waywayseecappo Wolverines, Wotton split last season between his current team and the SJHL’s Yorkton Terriers. Tremblay was selected as the SJHL’s player of the game.
SJHL 18U Blue 5, MJHL 18U White 4
Tim Kim of the Humbodt Broncos scored twice – including the game winner, which made it 5-3 for the SJHL. Melfort’s Zac Somers, Phangura and Melville’s Carter McKay also had goals. Cody Jaman of the Kindersley Klippers made 23 saves. North Stars defenceman Jordan Grill was recognized with the player of the game award.