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Yorkton Hometown Cycle Midget AA Terrier Clarke Breitkreuz ties the game at three goals apiece during a recent home game of a home and home series with the Melville Midget Millionaires at the kinsmen Arena over the recent weekend.

Midget Terriers open 2006-07 Season

By ALEX MORGOTCH

News Review

The Hometown Cycle Midget AA Terriers opened their pre-season with a home and home series against Melville over the weekend.

The Midget Mils shut out the Midget Terriers 5-0 in the first game in Melville.

Four of five Melville goals came on powerplays, suggesting the Midget Terriers needed to adapt to the new league rules.

Returning to the Kinsmen Arena the following afternoon, the Midget Terriers, trailing by two goals mid-way through the third period, pulled out a 5-5 tie with the Midget Mils.

Yorkton goals were scored by Wyndon Cyr, Clarke Breitkreuz, Brandon Whitehawk, Nathan Shabatura and Nolan Friday.

Regan Camrud earned three assists in the game while Keegan Sharp, Jordan Kramer, Shelby Gray, Friday and Logan Calanchie each earned an assist apiece.

Midget Terrier head coach Brian Boechler says, “We had a rude awakening to the new season.”

Boechler admits the Midget Terriers were bitten by the penalty bug, allowing three early goals. After that he suggests the team settled down, essentially playing a 2-0 game for the next 58 minutes.

As well, very few veterans played in the first game as he was giving his prospects a chance to show what they could do for the team. “We ended up with as good a performance as we were going to have,” Boechler suggests.

Boechler was pleased with the way the young players stepped up in Game 2, making the best of scoring opportunities.

“The guys started to realize the new rules would let them use their speed,” he states. “That really changed the game around for us.”

While Boechler feels he’s made his final cuts, he admits there’s still a possibility there may be a change once the dust settles around the province in the AAA league. “As far as we’re concerned, we’re down to our starting 19,” he states.

With the return of Devon Byblow, first year midget Ryan Findlay of Esterhazy, was cut, as Byblow and Luke Boechler have locked up both goalie spots.

Findlay, in goal for the exhibition series because of a football injury to Boechler, played exceptionally well for the Midget Terriers and shows a lot of promise, says Coach Boechler. “We would have loved to keep him as well, but you know, it was a situation where there was a bit of a crowd and our two second year boys were just a little bit stronger,” he states.

So far this season six of the current 19 players are returning veterans. As well, 16 of the 19 have significant experience at the Tier I level, Boechler points out.

The group who won the Tier II Westerns last year have also moved up to the Tier I team this year. “They really showed their speed and their ability to play at this level in the Sunday game,” he suggests.

Boechler says he’s seen some strong leadership from some of the second year players. Jordan Yarycky, from Norquay is showing some strong two way play. Second year defensemen Keegan Sharp, Dylan Trowell and Rhett Reeve are showing very strong on defense. “We’re looking to those guys for leadership,” he suggests.

While he sees many of his players as talented both ways, he admits there may not be any top five league scorers in the group. But he believes several have the capability to score well for the Midget Terriers.

Boechler also believes the Midget Terriers have a lot of depth with every line capable of putting the puck into the net.

He feels solid defensive play will keep the puck out of the Midget Terrier net, allowing the marksmen to score and win games.

“We know we’ll be challenged every single game by every team in the league. By the end of it (the season) we hope to be there in the playoffs to progress as far along as our talent can take us,” Boechler closes.