Cents Pick Up Hamilton from Portland:

(New Cents goaltender Keith Hamilton)

The Cents added another goaltender to their roster with the acquisition of Keith Hamilton (92) after he was released by the WHL’s Portland Winterhawks. With the addition, Norbert Biszczak (90) has been given his release in hopes that he can find a place to play this season. Biszczak had a rough go in the last game he played, but his numbers with North Delta last season showed that he has the talent to be a good goaltender. He also showed flashes of the ability to be a number one goaltender with the Cents, it just remains to be seen whether he lands with another junior A team or returns to junior B.

As for Hamilton, I’ve received word that he’ll be the back up to Cole Holowenko for tomorrow night’s game against Salmon Arm. He was a highly touted prospect out of the BC Major Midget League after playing as a 15-year-old for the Okanagan Rockets in 2007-08. Hamilton played 37 games with the Rockets that season and although I’ve been unable to find what his win-loss record was, I did discover that he played in the MML All-Star Game. He made Portland as a 16-year-old last season and only started seven games for them as the back up. Here’s his bio from the Winterhawks website:

“Rookie goaltender saw action in nine games as a rookie, seven of them starts…Had an outstanding debut on Oct. 22/08 at Saskatoon, earning a 4-3 overtime win…Stopped 30 of 33 shots in the contest…Followed up with 37 saves two nights later in Regina in a loss…Made 33 saves in a loss at first-place Vancouver on Nov. 16/08…In his final appearance of the season in his hometown of Kelowna on Mar. 11/09, he made a career-high 45 saves in a loss against the eventual WHL champs.”

On another note, the Centennials have officially released forwards Gary Rai (90) and Thomas Hardy (91). Rai wasn’t with the team due to personal reasons. I’m not sure if he’s left hockey altogether or if he’ll turn up on another team. I know he played a couple of games last season as an AP with Burnaby. Hardy quit the BCHL to go back to school.

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