In Memory: Duncan Wray

(Image: Vernon Vipers)

When news broke on Thursday about the passing of Vernon Vipers owner and BCHL Chairman of the Board Duncan Wray, tributes began to flood in from around the league from players and coaches to fellow owners and people around the hockey world.

I didn’t know Duncan really well, but I had interacted with him enough times to know what type of person he was. Although I was with the Centennials and Merritt radio station at the time, Duncan was always respectful and friendly. He exuded a passion for junior A hockey that very few have and his impact on the BCHL will reverberate for many years.

“We were shocked and saddened to receive word today about Duncan,” said BCHL commissioner John Grisdale in a release from the league. “He was the lifeblood of the Vipers franchise for a very long time and he leaves a huge void in our league and in our hearts.”

“We had the same type of attitude and mentality towards the game,” West Kelowna Warriors owner Mark Cheyne told Castanet News. “Our goals were very similar, that’s why we became pretty good friends away from the game.”

Salmon Arm Silverbacks President Troy Mick shared his thoughts on Wray with Roger Knox of the Salmon Arm Observer. “This is the saddest day of my life. Part of my heart feels ripped out. I haven’t stopped crying since this morning. He was an unbelievable owner. He never had a hidden agenda. He wanted the kids to play hockey and get an education. That’s all he wanted. He wasn’t in it for the money and for a guy who never played the game, he had so much love for it.”

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Merritt Centennials – Eligible Returnees and Graduating Players:

The Cents will have last year’s leading scorer Zach Risteau back in 2017-18.
The 19-year-old from Lakeville, Minnesota had 26-24-50 in 53 games with the Centennials as a rookie in 2016-17.
Photo credit: Ian Webster/Merritt Herald


Graduating Players
Zach Court (University of Nebraska-Omaha)
Cade Gleekel (St. Lawrence University)
Brett Jewell (Yale University)
Michael Regush (Cornell University)
Mike Faulkner (Hobart College)
Aaron Murray (Concordia University Wisconsin)
Stephan Seeger (aged out)
Nick Fidanza (aged out)

Eligible Returnees
(* indicates an open spot – assuming the team goes with 13 forwards and 8 defencemen)

Forwards
Chase Bell (97)
Henry Cleghorn (97)
Zach Zorn (97)
Zach Risteau (98)
Nicholas Wicks (98)
Tyler Ward (99)
Rylan Van Unen (99)
*
*
*
*
*
*

Defensemen
Tyrell Buckley (97)
Zach Bleuler (97)
Zach Metsa (98)
Ethan King (99)
Michael Van Unen (99)
*
*
*

Goaltenders
Jacob Berger (97)
Colten Lancaster (98)

Langley Rivermen – Eligible Returnees and Graduating Players:

20-year-old Ryan Barrow of Banff led Langley in scoring in 2016-17 with 68 points in 51 games.
He’s off to the University of Denver in September 2017.
Photo credit: Garrett James (http://garrettjamesphoto.photoshelter.com/index)

Graduating Players

Ryan Barrow (University of Denver)
Frank Boie (College of the Holy Cross)
Andrew Dumaresque (College of the Holy Cross)
Bo Didur (Penn State University)
Cameron Ginnetti (Clarkson University)
Max Kaufman (University of Vermont)
Gavin Payne (Rochester Polytechnic University)
Reid Yochim (Princeton University)
Zac Masson (aged out)
Cooper Leitch (aged out)

Eligible Returnees
(* indicates an open spot – assuming the team goes with 13 forwards and 8 defencemen)

Forwards
Satchel Clendenin (97)
Eric Butte (97)
Nicholas Ponak (97)
Baylee Wright (98)
Angus Crookshank (99)
Sean Gulka (00)
Brendan Budy (00)
*
*
*
*
*
*

Defencemen
McKay Flanagan (97)
John Schuldt (97)
Spencer Berry (98)
Jake Livingstone (99)
*
*
*
*

Goaltenders
Braedon Fleming (99)
*

Cowichan Capitals – Eligible Returnees and Graduating Players:

Cowichan alternate captain Max Newton is a veteran of 153 BCHL games. 
The Grand Forks Border Bruins alumni led the Caps with 59 points in 58 games. 
Photo credit: Garrett James (http://garrettjamesphoto.photoshelter.com/index)
Graduating Players
Mitch Skapski (aged out)
Ayden MacDonald (aged out)
Ben Verrall (aged out)
Josh Owings (aged out)
Lane Michasiw (aged out)
Chris Harpur (Niagara University)

Eligible Returnees
(* indicates an open spot – assuming the team goes with 13 forwards and 8 defencemen)

Only counting eligible returnees, the Capitals are currently one over the limit of six 1997-born players for 2017-18.

Forwards
Rhett Kingston (97)
Max Newton (97)
Michael Montambault (97)
George Sennott (97)
Haydn Hopkins (97)
Jared Domin (97)
Ty Pochipinski (98)
Justin Perron (98)
John Sladic (98)
Nicholas Wilson (99)
Alex Zawatsky (99)
*
*

Defencemen
Simon Chen (97)
Nii Noi Tetteh (98)
Marshall Skapski (98)
Sean Driscoll (98)
Ben Grist (99)
*
*
*

Goaltenders
Adam Marcoux (98)
*

Coquitlam Express – Eligible Returnees and Graduating Players:

Coquitlam captain Luca Leone is a veteran of 112 BCHL games and 70 WHL games.
He led the Express with 36 points in 49 games.
Photo credit: Damon James (http://garrettjamesphoto.photoshelter.com/index)

Graduating Players
Luca Leone (aged out)
Erik Udahl (aged out)
Cameron Bertsch (aged out)
Lawson Fenton (aged out)
David Giunta (Bentley University)
Mitchell Newsome (Michigan Tech University)
Owen Stout (Rochester Polytechnic Institute)

Eligible Returnees
(* indicates an open spot – assuming the team goes with 13 forwards and 8 defencemen)

The Express have nine eligible returning defencemen, so it is technically at one player over the 23-man roster limit at this point.

Forwards
Alex Ambrosio (97)
Hayden Knight (97)
Cal Babych (97)
William Lawrence (97)
Keegan Jones (97)
Jonathan Irving (97)
Sam Kozlowski (98)
Blake Hayward (98)
Christian Bosa (98)
Callum Cusinato (98)
Jake Toor (99)
*
*

Defencemen
Jake Brien (97)
Brandon Kennedy (97)
Domenic Masellis (97)
Cal Walker (97)
Troy Robillard (98)
Noah Turanski (98)
Devin Mussio (99)
Jordan Schulting (99)
Michael Sande (99)

Goaltenders
Reid Cooper (98)
*

Alberni Valley Bulldogs – Eligible Returnees and Graduating Players:

Trevor Cosgrove led the Bulldogs in scoring in 2016-17 with 49 points, he’s committed to Colgate University.
With the 2016-17 BCHL season officially done for three of the circuits’s 17 teams, anticipation is building for next season already.

With future considerations from this season’s trades potentially turning into players for next season, recruiting, and players moving on due to age or college commitments, there’s no shortage of work to be done before the 2017-18 season starts in September at the 6th Annual BCHL Showcase in Chilliwack.

I’ll break down what all 17 teams are looking at roster-wise heading into the off-season. These numbers will likely change as players look to move to other leagues like the WHL, USHL, NAHL, are included in trades, retire, or wind up committing to post-secondary institutions before September and don’t return to their BCHL clubs.

The depth chart is based on coaches going with a 23-man roster of 13 forwards, 8 defensemen and 2 goaltenders.

So let’s start alphabetically, with the Alberni Valley Bulldogs:

Graduating Players
Jake Witkowski (aged out)
Nicholas Rasovic (aged out)
Paul Savage (aged out)
Malik Kaila (aged out)
Brody Claeys (aged out)
Trevor Cosgrove (Colgate University)
Henry Marshall (Colgate University)
Darren Rizzolo (Northeastern University)

Eligible Returnees
(* indicates an open spot – assuming the team goes with 13 forwards and 8 defencemen)

Forwards
Keith Anderson (97)
Tristan Bukovec (97)
Alex Macdonald (97)
Ryan Steele (97)
Spencer Hunter (98)
Jordan Sandhu (99)
Braydon Nelson (99)
Kyle Kaufmann (99)
Cayden Kraus (99)
Mackenzie Wight (99)
*
*
*

Defencemen
Cameron Kuhl (97)
Connor Welsh (97)
Cole Slaney (98)
Jake Wilhelm (99)
*
*
*
*

Goaltenders
Carson Schamerhorn (97)
*

2017 Roster Deadline Coverage:


The Canadian Junior Hockey League and BC Hockey League trade/roster deadline arrives today at 6 pm PST for transactions between teams in different leagues (i.e. BCHL to MJHL) and at 8 pm PST for moves made within the BCHL. The deadline for teams to have their roster completely set is 11:59 pm PST.

For the most current confirmed transactions, follow me on Twitter at @Brian_Wiebe.

I’ll have a full breakdown of all roster moves here on the blog tomorrow.