The Penticton Vees sent another signal they’re loading up to challenge for a championship in 2019-20 by adding yet another experienced forward to the lineup.
The Vees acquired forward 2000-born winger Lach Hadley from the Cowichan Valley Capitals in exchange for future considerations.
“He’s got almost 100 games of (BCHL) experience, he adds depth, brings more energy and physicality to our lineup and he’s a good penalty killer,” said Vees president, GM and head coach Fred Harbinson.
Hadley has played in 99 career BCHL games split between the Victoria Grizzlies and Capitals. The 5’ 10”, 175-pound left-handed shot has logged six goals and 16 points while adding 69 penalty minutes.
Harbinson said he has expects Hadley’s game to continue to progress in Penticton.
“You can’t have all the same type of players,” said Harbinson. “He brings a lot of different things to the table and he’ll get an opportunity here to continue to develop the offensive side of his game.”
The Victoria native played all of his hockey on Vancouver Island, suiting up for the South Island Royals of the BC Major Midget League during the 2015/16 season where he posted 17 goals and 31 points in 40 games, before joining the Canadian Sport School Hockey League (CSSHL) and Shawnigan Lake, ahead of playing for the Grizzlies full time in 2018.
Harbinson said the Vees now have 12 forwards, seven defencemen and two goaltenders. They have the maximum of six 20-year-olds, along with 10 19-year-olds and four 18-year-olds.
Their only 17-year-old is defenceman Scott Gilowski.
The coach said the Vees can still add one more player – quite likely a forward – for a full 22-man roster.
“We’re not in any immediate rush to do that,” said Harbinson.
Harbinson said the Vees are currently finalizing the rosters for main training camp, which starts in less than three weeks on Monday, Aug. 19.
He said the coaching staff will determine who their main affiliated players will be, along with a few AP goalies that the team is high on.
Players have already started trickling in to prepare for the season, with a large contingent expected to arrive on Aug. 12.
“We’re in pretty good shape on and off the ice, we’ve got our billets finalized and everything already,” Harbinson. “If it was up to us we’d get going right now.”
ICE CHIPS: Fans will get to see the Vees on the ice for the first team when camp opens Aug. 19 with practice sessions at 10 a.m. for Group 1 and 11:30 a.m. for Group 2, with a scrimmage session set for 5 p.m. at the SOEC. The annual “Peaches Cup” intrasquad game goes Aug. 22 at 5 p.m. at the SOEC… The Vees open their six-game pre-season slate Aug. 21 against the Warriors in West Kelowna. Their first home pre-season game is Aug. 23 against the Merritt Centennials, followed by the return visit to Merritt on Aug. 24. The Vees finish pre-season play with three more homes games – Aug. 28 versus West Kelowna and Aug. 30 and 31 against the defending RBC Cup-champion Brooks Bandits from the Alberta league.