Defenceman Michael Ryan is among the key returnees on the 2017-18 edition of the West Kelowna Warriors. -Image: Ken Reid/Greystoke Photography

Warriors stable on D for 2017-18 season

West Kelowna heads into BCHL campagin with four skilled veterans on the back end

With four skilled and experienced defencemen returning to the roster, the back end could well be the West Kelowna Warriors’ strength heading into 2017-18 B.C. Hockey League season.

A trio of 20-year-olds—Stephen Kleysen, Michael Ryan and Tyler Jutting—will be joined by West Kelowna product Jake Harrison, 18, in providing stability and depth on the Warriors’ defensive corps.

“I think we’re building from a good position,” Warriors’ head coach and GM Rylan Ferster said of his defense. “I like our back end, those four guys can all move the puck, so it’s a good place to start.”

The Warriors kicked off their 2017 edition of training camp this week with 40 players on the roster.

Up front, the Warriors will look to a handful of key returnees, including Chase Dubois, Parm Dhaliwal, Matt Campese, Chase Stevenson and new captain Jared Marino.

The Warriors have also added Matt Kowalski, acquired from the Nanaimo Clippers in the offseason.

Newcomers to watch at forward include a pair of imports in R.J. Murphy (Massachusetts) and Willie Reim (Minnesota).

“We’re going to be young at forward this season,” said Ferster. “We defended well last season, but we had trouble scoring goals at times. At this point, from what I’ve seen, I’d like to think we have a chance to score more. I think the potential is there.”

Coming out of retirement to return in goal for his final season of junior hockey is Nick Amundrud, 19, who played in seven games with the Warriors last season. Kelowna native Cole Demers, 18, will also be back for his second season with West Kelowna.

The Warriors continue their preseason schedule Friday night when they host the Merritt Centennials. Face off is 7 p.m.

West Kelowna opens the 2017-18 regular season with a home-and-home set against the Trail Smoke Eaters, on Sept. 8 and 9.

To see the Warriors schedule, go to bchl.ca

whenderson@kelownacapnews.com

Just Posted

‘Listen to your gut’ urges injured skier

Mike Shaw was told he’d never walk again after an accident four years ago, but he defied the odds

Small grass fire sparks in West Kelowna

Fire crews quickly douse blaze in ditch on Friday afternoon

Kelowna teen allegedly robbed while walking at night

Community asked for tips to help reunite teen with ring

Nasty note on windshield sparks online outrage

Vernon’s Bailey McDonald is using a painful experience to start conversation about invisible illness

Remembering road crash victims in Kelowna

World Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims takes place Sunday in Kelowna

Flag person struck by car

RCMP investigating incident involving female traffic control person and senior driver

‘I will now live in consistent fear’: Allan Schoenborn granted escorted leaves

The Merritt man was deemed not criminally responsible in the killing of his three children in 2008

Guns and drugs seized in Kamloops RCMP blitz

Kamloops Mounties and the gang unit seize drugs and make arrests in two-day blitz

Hammy the deer dodges conservation officers in Prince Rupert

The famous Prince Rupert hammock deer maintains his purple threads

‘No shirt, no service, no Canada’

Shirtless Tacoma man arrested after Canadian border officials say they found meth in rental vehicle

Interior Health expands meningococcal precautions in South Okanagan

Oliver, Osoyoos and Okanagan Falls included in the expanded precautionary immunization measure

Homeless count returns amid Penticton’s housing crisis

Volunteers are hitting the streets this week to find solid data on Penticton’s homeless population

Missing woman smart, courageous, lovable

Mother says Caitlin Potts trying to overcome foster care experience

Federal funding to combat guns, gangs and opioid crisis

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said illicit drugs are often main cause of guns, gangs violence

Most Read