The leadership team

From left, Niedermayer, Williams, Ho and Martini

The Penticton Vees are wasting no time preparing for next season, even if it's months away.

And they have appointed a captain who could be the face of the franchise for seasons to come in 17-year-old Fin Williams.

Williams will be joined by assistant captains Tyler Ho, Jackson Niedermayer and Ethan Martini to round out the leadership group announced Friday. The four have combined for 493 career regular season games and 87 career playoff games across their careers.

“We are fortunate to have been able to assemble a strong leadership group,” said Vees coach Fred Harbinson. “Each will bring a different element that is necessary to have a positive impact on our team. I have complete confidence Fin will carry on the tradition of great Vees captains in the past.”

The BCHL is hoping to begin play Dec. 1.

Williams is a B.C. Hockey League champion, joining the Prince George Spruce Kings for the team’s run during the 2019 playoffs.

The six-foot, 190-pound forward got into eight BCHL playoff games while suiting up for six Doyle Cup games and six games at the National Junior-A Championship, playing until the tournament’s final game.

The North Vancouver product produced 11 goals and 20 assists in 40 games during his 16-year-old campaign a season ago.

“It’s been so exciting for me to be around everyone within the Vees organization over the last couple weeks,” said Williams, “I’ve been so impressed by all my new teammates on and off the ice, so to be named captain for such a special group is something that is a huge honour. I’m excited to help represent a program with such a rich history.”

Ho, 20, returns for a second season in Penticton after being acquired by the Vees early in 2019-20. The Surrey native suited up for 42 games during the regular season, potting 13 goals and 11 assists while producing four goals and five points in 5 playoff games with the Vees a season ago.

“I’m extremely honoured to be able to represent this team in being named an assistant captain,” Ho said. “Following in the footsteps of former captains and leaders of this team makes wearing a letter extremely prideful and I will do my best to help Fin and our leadership group guide this team on and off the ice.”

Niedermayer, 19, is entering his third season in the Peach City while enjoying a breakout offensive campaign in 2019-20. The Penticton native registered 23 goals and 22 assists in 52 games as well as providing two goals and six points in five playoff games. He’s the longest tenured Vee on the roster.

“Going into my third season in Penticton, I’m excited to have the chance to build on the winning culture that has been established here and provide leadership with my experience,” Niedermayer said.