Cents Hire Joe Martin as Assistant Coach/GM, Luke Pierce on the Hiring and Steve Tresierra’s Commitment to Queen’s University, Cents Forward Max Vallis Drafted to NAHL:

The Centennials made it official today. Joe Martin is joining the team as assistant coach and assistant GM from the Creston Valley Thundercats of the KIJHL. He replaces Chad DeLeeuw, whose contract wasn’t renewed at the end of the season.

Here’s the official release:


Merritt, BC – May 27, 2011

The Merritt Centennials of the BC Hockey League are pleased to announce the hiring of Joe Martin as Assistant Coach and Assistant GM for the next two seasons.

“Joe is exactly what we were looking for in an assistant coach,” said Cents Head Coach & GM Luke Pierce. “His familiarity with junior hockey in BC, recruiting of players, and hockey knowledge will be an instant impact within the Merritt Centennials culture.”

Martin has been the Head Coach and GM of the KIJHL’s Creston Valley Thundercats for the past four years and guided the team to one regular season division title, two first round playoff series wins, moved ten players onto college, ten players onto junior ‘A’ hockey and produced a regular season record of 112-68-3-2. He was also named Eddie Mountain Division Coach of the Year for 2010-11.

“I’m very happy to be joining the Centennials in their 39th year of operation in the BCHL. The last few years I’ve been watching the team’s progress under Luke Pierce and now to join the organization and work with Luke is an honour,” said Martin. “The Cents have a great reputation in junior hockey and after meeting some of the people I can see why. I look forward to making the move to Merritt permanently and working with the community on building a championship team.”

For further information, please contact Cents head coach and GM Luke Pierce at 250-378-3607.

The Merritt Centennials, proudly celebrating 39 seasons as the BCHL’s longest continuously run franchise, are a non-profit, community owned Junior ‘A’ Hockey Club run by a dedicated team of investors, directors, and volunteers.

I talked with Luke this morning about the hiring:

Yesterday I talked to Luke about the commitment of Steve Tresierra to Queen’s University. I didn’t get a chance to post it then, so here it is:

Cents forward Max Vallis was drafted by New Mexico in the 3rd round, 60th overall in the North American Hockey League draft on Wednesday.

It’s the second time this off-season that Vallis has been claimed by a team in a US Junior ‘A’ league after he was drafted earlier this month by the USHL’s Omaha Lancers. Word is that Vallis is still planning to return to Merritt in 2011-12. I would expect that he is poised to significantly improve on his 22 goals this past season.

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