Total of 18 players released Wednesday
SUMMERSIDE – The Summerside Western Capitals made their first round of cuts on Wednesday night.
The Capitals, who opened training camp on Monday, released 18 players – three goaltenders, five defencemen and 10 forwards – following Wednesday night’s intra-squad game.
The players released were:
Goalies – Koby Bridges, Bradley Shea and Jaxon Lamont.
Defence – Lucas Beaulieu, Spencer Ross, Jesse Jay, Matt Cox and Dylan Wall.
Forwards – Dylan Wheatley, Campbell Gallant, Alex Hambly, Riley Gallant, Max Morrison, Nick Currie, Logan Toole, Colton Chiasson, Scott Delaney and Kyle Pinksen.
“With the midget camps starting tomorrow (Friday), we wanted to make sure a lot of the kids got back and gave themselves a good opportunity to make those teams,” said Capitals general manager Pat McIver in an interview on Thursday morning. “We are still carrying a few midgets, and we will see how they do on the weekend.
“The next round of cuts is going to be a little more difficult.”
Back on the ice
The Capitals return to the ice at Eastlink Arena on Friday at 3 p.m., and will see their first game action this weekend as they meet the Pictou County Weeks Crushers in an exhibition home-and-home series. The teams meet in Summerside on Saturday and in New Glasgow, N.S., on Sunday. Fans are asked to note the start time for both games is 3 p.m.
McIver noted that although Shea has been released so he can join his midget team’s training camp from Day 1, he will play half of Saturday’s game with the Caps to gain some experience at the junior A level.
After Saturday’s game the Caps will be down to just two goaltenders – Brodie Barrick, who played the last two seasons with the Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League, and sophomore Alex Kelly of Kensington.
“Brodie and Alex will be our two goalies starting the season,” confirmed McIver, who added 19-year-old forward A.J. Johnson of Newtonville, Mass., is scheduled to join the Caps on Friday.
Johnson’s arrival will bring the training camp roster to 30, and McIver said, ideally, he would like to be down to 21 or 22 for the regular-season opener in New Glasgow on Sept. 11.
“I’m not a firm believer of keeping guys in the stands,” said McIver. “We’ve had a good relationship with the junior B and midget teams.
“There is no reason to carry a whole lot of extra bodies when we know we have access to good affiliate players.”