I didn’t get a chance to see this morning’s sessions but tonight at the Civic Center I did take in some more of the scrimmages.
The Stars put a few vets on each team in part to see how some of the younger guys would do in battles and encounters with experienced players.
The first game saw team Black beat Gold 5-3 and Black controlled a lot of the play. A few guys stood out offensively but for me I enjoyed the physical battles. Adam Smith should be a fun player to watch this year and the 20 year old, despite playing out of position on defense, got into it physically several times. Brant Saretsky was one of the players he got into it with. D-man Josh Odelein for team Gold battled with Chris Woods a few times as well.
The second game saw team Gold stay out and take on Team White. Veterans on Gold were Smith as well as Igor Leonenko who looks good so far. He appears to have come into camp in great shape and ready to go for year 2 in the SJHL. Team White had Ryne Keller and Jack McMillen.
White jumped out to an early 3-0 lead but it was pretty even after that. A late Igor Leonenko break away goal made it a 7-6 final with team White picking up the win.
In game #3 it was a 1-1 game with team Black beating White 2-1 after a shootout. Kevin Bendall scored for White and Logan Nachtegaele replied late for Black.
Overall I thought tonight had a pretty good pace considering there must have been some really tired legs out there. And I liked the showing from a lot of the young local players. Bendall, both Jaeden and Logan Nachtegaele, Blake Oborowsky, Quinton Cubbon, Rett Taggart, Connor Sych, Layne Young, Owen Lamb, Troy Gerein and both Ryan Rewerts and Taryn Kotchorek in goal. Some of those guys look like they will be big parts of the North Stars future.
I haven’t had a chance to speak with the Stars coaching staff about what they thought so this is just speculation but I think Logan Nachtegaele has a decent chance to make the team in a 4th line role. Guys like Taggart, Young, Lamb and Gerein will in all likelihood play with the AAA Stars this year and continue to develop. I am not sure what will happen in goal at this point. It’s still early and the rookie game will play a role in some decisions I am sure.
The Stars will play a rookie game in Kindersley tomorrow which I can’t attend. Then they will send some kids back to their midget teams and trim down for the start of preseason on Tuesday when about 30 or so players will get a chance to be part of the 2014-15 North Stars roster. And I have to say after such a busy offseason I wasn’t sure what to expect. It’s early but there is a lot of talent to choose from for the North Stars this season.