The Morrisburg Junior C Lions had a big week as close to 40 players were in camp hoping to cut a spot with this year’s team.
Lions coach Joe Hummell was pleased with what he saw on the ice, despite two exhibition losses to the North Dundas Rockets, 11-1 and 2-1 on home ice on Sunday.
“We didn’t do so well the first game,” said Hummell. “But we wanted to give some of the guys a chance to get into a game. We have some solid defencemen who didn’t play the first game. I put them back in on Sunday and they made a big difference.”
Hummell is referring to returning defencemen Jordan Smail, Jordan St. Louis,Tanner Hummel and Curtis Evans (although he expects Evans will be seeing ice time up front).
Also expected to be after a spot on defence is Dillon Lapier.
“We had a really good camp last week. We had close to 40 kids out altogether which was great. And we expect a couple more to be out at our first practise on Tuesday night.”
Of the 40 hopefuls, eight of them were goaltenders. Eric Mantha and Brett Hahn have been signed to goalie cards and two others are still being looked at.
“We are solid on defence but we really need to get some punch up front,” says Hummell adding there were also a couple of nice surprises.
“Both of the Evans boys [Curtis and Eric] are back, and Sam Frawley was a nice surprise. He really had a good camp.”
Hummell says he has cut his numbers and would like to get down to about 22 this week. Over the next few weeks, it is expected other players will become available as the upper tier junior teams continue to release players to finalize their lineups.
The Lions have two practises, on Tuesday and Wednesday night this week and will open their first season in the National Capital League at showcase event at the Geurtin Arean in Gatineau, Quebec on Saturday, September 26 when they play the Cumberland Bandits at 5:30 p.m.
Their first regular season home game will be played on Saturday, October 3, against the Embrun Panthers. Game time is 7:30 p.m.
In Sunday’s 2-1 loss to the Rockets, all goals were scored in the first period.
Chris Spicer got it rolling for the Lions when he opened the scoring in the first period and Owen Salmon and Ryan Romans answered for the Rockets.