Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Another New Beginning

It was in July 2012 that I began this blog, the Eagles Insider, and wrote my first post where I talked about joining the Surrey Eagles as the play-by-play broadcaster and Director of Media Relations and my excitement at the new opportunity.

Now, just over a year later, I will not be back with the Eagles for the 2013-2014 season as I will take up a new position as one of the play-by-play voices of the Vancouver Giants of the WHL. This is a great chance for me to take my broadcasting career to the next level, and I'd like to thank Ron Toigo and the Giants ownership group for granting me this opportunity. I'm incredibly excited to make the jump to the "dub" for this coming season.

Having said that, my year in Surrey with the Eagles will be one that I will never forget. I was welcomed with open arms into the organization by everyone involved, and we had a phenomenal season both on and off the ice. Experiencing a run to the Royal Bank Cup Semi-Final and having the chance to broadcast some of the most exciting Junior A games in the country was an honour and a privilige.

I want to thank Chuck Westgard, the Eagles ownership group and Ronnie Paterson for giving me the opportunity to be a part of an unbelieveable season with the team. I'd also like to thank the front office staff, particularly Sharon Anderson and Andrew Delbaere, who helped me out a lot while I got my feet under me in the early stages of the season and brought a great passion and enthusiasm to the job. I also really enjoyed working with Garrett and Damon James. These two guys are phenomenal photographers who are going places.

On the hockey side of things, it was a pleasure to work with Matt Erhart, Peter Schaefer, Brad Tobin, Jim Babcock, Ian Groskleg, Ian Mason, Nick Johnston and many others that I'm sure I've forgotten to mention, and I have many fond memories of my time at the SSA. As for the players on the team, I couldn't have asked for a greater group of young men to spend a season covering, both on the ice and off the ice. While the team achieved some incredible things, the players were always accommodating in their dealings with me, and I really enjoyed every minute I spent with the team.

At the league level, I want to thank John Grisdale, Trevor Alto and Brent Mutis for the hard work they put in to make this league as special as it is, and while I won't name them all individually, the 15 other play-by-play men across the league are all phenomenal broadcasters and great people. Thanks for letting me be a part of the fraternity.

And last but not least, I need to mention the fans, volunteers and listeners/viewers/readers in Surrey. There are some incredible people who have incredible passion for this team, whether it be the season ticket holders who come and cheer at every game or the volunteers that help make gamenights run smoothly or the people who can't be there in person but tune-in to the broadcasts and read the post-game reports. All of you make this hockey team what it is, and I feel incredibly honoured to have been allowed into your community this past year.

I look forward to following the 2013-2014 edition of the Eagles along with all of you.

Sincerely,

Brendan Batchelor

Friday, July 19, 2013

Eagles Add Three

For immediate release: July 19, 2013
Left to right: Austin Edwards, Bo Didur, Chris Seto

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that defenseman Austin Edwards ('95), forward Chris Seto ('97) and goaltender Bo Didur ('97) have committed to play for the team, beginning in the 2013-2014 season.

"We're very excited that these three players have decided to play for us next season," said Eagles President, Head Coach and GM Peter Schaefer. "Austin is a really good puck moving defenseman while Chris is a skilled forward that had a great camp for us last year. Bo was very well liked by our previous goalie Michael Santaguida and had a great record last year as well. They're all great additions."

Edwards, an Abbotsford native, appeared in eight regular season games and nine playoff games with the Abbotsford Pilots of the PIJHL in the 2012-2013 season. The 18-year-old had seven points in the regular season and six points in the post-season. Edwards has appeared in two BCHL games as well, suiting up for the Chilliwack Chiefs in the 2011-2012 season.

"I'm really excited," said Edwards. "I've heard that the coaching staff is great. The Eagles have been a great team in the past, and with them coming off a berth in the RBC Cup, it'll be exciting to go there and play with guys who experienced that run."

Seto spent the 2012-2013 season with the Cloverdale Colts Midget AAA team. The 16-year-old was a third round selection of the Kelowna Rockets in the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft. Seto, who is a Surrey native, also practiced with the Eagles throughout last season.

"It will be a great experience to play in the BCHL," said Seto. "I wanted to play for the Eagles because I'm from Surrey, and practicing with the team last year really helped me a lot with my development. I'm really looking forward to it."

Didur, who hails from West Vancouver, played for the Vancouver Northwest Giants in the BC Major Midget League last year. The 16-year-old net minder was part of the Giants squad that went to the Pacific Regional Finals before falling to the eventual Telus Cup Champion Red Deer Optimist Chiefs.

"I'm really honoured to be given an opportunity to play for such a respected team in the BCHL," said Didur. "What the team accomplished last year was pretty amazing, and we hope to do what they did last year again this coming season."

The Eagles would like to welcome Didur, Seto and Edwards to the organization.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Eagles Acquire Pilton from Victoria

For immediate release: July 17, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club announced on Wednesday that the team has acquired defenseman Kade Pilton ('94) and future considerations from the Victoria Grizzlies in exchange for forward Stefan Burzan ('94).

"We hope that getting a big body on the back end that can skate and has some experience will help us this coming season," said Eagles President, Head Coach and GM Peter Schaefer of Pilton. "We hope he can be a nice compliment to some of our smaller puck moving defensemen."

Pilton split the 2012-2013 season with the Regina Pats of the WHL and the Grizzlies. The Parksville native put up three points in 27 games in Regina before appearing in 12 regular season games with Victoria, tallying five points. Pilton had two points in six playoff games with the Grizzlies who lost to the Alberni Valley Bulldogs in the Island Division Final.

Burzan, who hails from Surrey, played 51 regular season games for the Eagles last year, scoring six goals and 10 assists. In the post-season, he appeared in 19 games during Surrey's run to the RBC Cup Semi-Final, posting two points. Burzan has also spent time in the WHL as he appeared in two games for the Seattle Thunderbirds in the 2011-2012 season.

The Eagles would like to welcome Kade to the organization while wishing Stefan all the best in his future endeavours.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Eagles Trade For Pair of Twins

For immediate release: July 8, 2013

Left to right: Jonah Renouf, Nathan Renouf,
Patrick Chore, Eric Chore
Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club announced on Monday that the team has acquired forwards Jonah Renouf ('94), Nathan Renouf ('94), Patrick Chore ('93) and Eric Chore ('93) from the Oakville Blades of the Ontario Junior Hockey League in exchange for goaltender Glenn Ferguson ('94), the playing rights to Devon Toews ('94), Michael Santaguida ('93) and Michael Stenerson ('93) and future considerations.

"We've lost some forwards from last year's team to NCAA schools, so we're excited to be acquiring some great skill guys who have put up great numbers in Ontario," said Eagles President, General Manager and Head Coach Peter Schaefer. "We hope they'll help out our power play as well, and we're very excited to have these young men join our organization."

The Renouf brothers hail from Mississauga, Ontario. Jonah finished second in OJHL scoring in the 2012-2013 season with 29 goals and 65 assists in 53 games while Nathan was sixth in league scoring, tallying 21 goals and 56 assists in 54 games. In the playoffs, the Renoufs combined for 11 points in six games as the Blades were eliminated by the North York Rangers in the first round. Both brothers have committed to attend Quinnipiac University for the 2014-2015 season.

The Chores are Kelowna natives who will return to their home province to play for the Eagles. Both brothers spent time with the North Okanagan Knights of the KIJHL for parts of two seasons from 2010-2012 and both had stints in the BCHL before heading to Ontario to start the 2012-2013 season. Patrick played 37 games for the Prince George Spruce Kings in 2011-2012 while Eric has suited up in 10 BCHL games split between the Spruce Kings and the Vernon Vipers.

Ferguson heads to Ontario after appearing in nine games for the Birds in the 2012-2013 season, posting a record of 4-5-0. While their playing rights have been transferred, Stenerson, Toews and Santaguida have all completed their junior careers and will be starting at NCAA schools in the fall.

The Eagles would like to welcome Jonah, Nathan, Patrick and Eric to the organization while wishing Glenn the best of luck in his future endeavours.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Adam Tambellini Interview: July 3, 2013

I caught up with former Eagles forward and New York Rangers draft pick Adam Tambellini to talk about the NHL Entry Draft this past Sunday where he was selected 65th overall by the Blueshirts.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Tambellini Goes to the Rangers

For immediate release: June 30, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that forward Adam Tambellini has been selected in the third round of today's NHL Entry Draft in Newark, New Jersey by the New York Rangers with the 65th overall pick.

"It's very exciting as an organization when you have a player drafted," said Eagles President, General Manager and Head Coach Peter Schaefer. "Adam had a great year personally and a great year for us as a team. We're all incredibly excited for him to be going to the Big Apple. To play in New York City at Madison Square Garden will be really special for him, and I'm sure he's going to have a great career with the Rangers."

Tambellini joined the Eagles at the BCHL trade deadline this past January and was a key part of Surrey's run to the Fred Page Cup, Western Canada Cup and RBC Cup Semi-Final. In his 16 regular season games in Surrey, Tambellini tallied an impressive 14 goals and 12 assists. He continued his strong play throughout Surrey's post-season run, putting up 28 points in 27 games. To cap off his playoff performance, Tambellini was named the Top Forward at the RBC Cup in Summerside, PEI last month. The 18-year-old is set to attend the University of North Dakota in the fall.

The Eagles would like to congratulate Tambellini on this impressive accomplishment.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Eagles Partner With Semiahmoo Minor Hockey

For immediate release: June 27, 2013

Ian Maguire of SMHA and Peter Schaefer
Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that the team is joining together in a partnership with the Semiahmoo Minor Hockey Association.

The agreement will feature many benefits for both the Birds and SMHA. Eagles players will mentor minor hockey teams during the upcoming season and participate in their practices while Peter Schaefer and the Eagles' coaching staff will mentor and host clinics.

"We're excited as an organization to be partnering with Semiahmoo Minor Hockey and becoming more involved in the community," said Eagles President, General Manager and Head Coach Peter Schaefer. "With 1,000 members in the minor hockey association, our players and staff are looking forward to working with the SMHA to help impact the lives of these young hockey players in a positive way."

Off the ice, the two organizations will co-host fundraising events while both sides will also have the chance to enter into joint sponsorship opportunities. In addition, the Eagles will provide all members of the minor hockey association with a 25 per cent discount on season tickets, and the SMHA will receive 25 per cent of the revenue from every season ticket sold to one of its members.

"Semiahmoo Minor Hockey is delighted to be partnering with the Surrey Eagles this coming season," said SMHA President Ian Maguire. "This is a natural partnership within our community and provides an ideal avenue for our budding hockey stars to interact and learn from the best hockey talent in our community. We look forward to working closely with Peter Schaefer and the entire Surrey Eagles organization."

Monday, June 24, 2013

Eagles 2013-2014 Schedule Released

The BCHL released its schedule for the 2013-2014 regular season on Monday, and I just wanted to post a couple of quick thoughts on some key games for the Eagles in the upcoming season.

After the two games at the Showcase in Chilliwack against West Kelowna and Vernon on September 6th and 7th, the Birds will open up at home on September 13th against the Langley Rivermen. This will also mark the night that the Eagles raise their Fred Page Cup and Crescent Point Energy Western Canada Cup banners and look back on the success of the 2012-2013 campaign for one last time. Definitely a date to circle on your calendar.

While the Birds didn't have to make an out-of-town trip until the middle of October last year, the Surrey club will get over to the island just two weeks into the season as they'll visit Alberni Valley for a rematch of the Coastal Conference Final on September 21st before playing in Duncan against the Cowichan Valley Capitals the next night.

We already knew that the Birds would face the Vernon Vipers at the BCHL Showcase, but a weird scheduling quirk has the out-of-conference opponents going head-to-head three times in the first month of the season as the Eagles will have a home-and-home series with the 2014 RBC Cup hosts on September 27th and 28th.

This year, the BCHL decided to add two games to its schedule, meaning the Birds will play a total of 58 games. Those two extra games will be made up of divisional match-ups. Much like last year, Surrey will play each of its divisional opponents eight times with the exception of the Chilliwack Chiefs and Coquitlam Express who they will play nine times each. The Express will visit the South Surrey Arena five times while the Birds will head to Chilliwack five times. However, Surrey won't get a crack at its big rival from the valley until October 26th at Prospera Centre. The Chiefs will make their first visit to Surrey on November 8th.

We'll have to wait until December to get a rematch of the Fred Page Cup Final as the Eagles will return to the South Okanagan Events Centre for the first time since Adam Tambellini's double overtime winner in Game 6 on December 7th to face Penticton. The Vees will make their lone trip to the SSA on February 8th.

Surrey will conclude the regular season with a three-game Island Division road trip when they'll visit Powell River, Nanaimo and Victoria on February 21st, 22nd and 23rd respectively.

The Eagles' longest stretch of games away from home comes in late November and early December when they'll visit Coquitlam, West Kelowna, Penticton and Langley consecutively.

Surrey's longest home stand -- also four games -- will be split up by the December break with the Eagles hosting Nanaimo, Coquitlam and Prince George before Christmas before returning after the holidays to play Chilliwack on December 28th.

See the full Eagles schedule by clicking here.

See the BCHL's Press Release by clicking here.

Erhart to Giants; Schaefer Named Head Coach and GM

For immediate release: June 24, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club announced on Monday that Matt Erhart will not be returning as the Head Coach and General Manager of the hockey club as he will join the Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League as an Assistant Coach. With Erhart's departure, the Eagles are pleased to announce that President Peter Schaefer will take over the roles of General Manager and Head Coach.

"We're happy for Matt," said Eagles majority owner Chuck Westgard. "He wants to further his coaching career, and this is a great opportunity that he couldn't turn down. We're sad to lose him as he's been fabulous over the past few years, but at the same time, we're very confident with Peter taking over. He showed this year that he's passionate about coaching, and we're excited to have him as our Head Coach and General Manager for the upcoming season."

During his three years as bench boss of the Birds, Erhart compiled an impressive record of 106-50-6-14. In each year during his tenure, the Eagles won a minimum of 35 games in the regular season and made it at least as far as the Conference Final in the playoffs. After the 2011-2012 season, Erhart was named the Coastal Conference winner of the Joe Tennant Memorial Trophy as coach of the year. The Delta native, who won an RBC Cup as a player with the Eagles in 1998, came within two wins of replicating the feat as a coach when he led the 2012-2013 edition of the team to a semi-final berth at the national championship tournament after winning the BCHL's Fred Page Cup and the first ever Western Canada Cup.

"It's a bittersweet day when you have to leave a program that you've been a part of as a player and a coach," said Erhart. "The Eagles gave me a great opportunity to be a Head Coach and General Manager in the BCHL, and I'll always be thankful for that. With the Giants, it's a chance to further my coaching career, and I couldn't pass it up. It was a pleasure to work with the coaches over the past three seasons in Surrey, and I'm very excited that Peter will be taking over as Head Coach and GM. He'll do an excellent job with the returning players and recruits going forward."

After a lengthy playing career in the professional ranks that included NHL stops in Vancouver, Ottawa and Boston, Schaefer joined the Eagles as an Assistant Coach at the start of the 2012-2013 season. Following Surrey's run to the semi-final at the RBC Cup, the Yellow Grass, Saskatchewan native was named the President of the team and is looking forward to taking over for Erhart behind the bench.

"I'm excited," said Schaefer. "I learned a lot from Matt this past year, and we had a long and successful season. Now I'll have to take that knowledge and apply it going forward. With Matt moving on, I'm looking forward to working with the returning veterans and the up-and-coming new recruits."

The Eagles would like to thank Erhart for his time spent in the organization and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.



Thursday, June 20, 2013

Ammann Joins Eagles

For immediate release: June 20, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that Grant Ammann has been hired as the team's Athletic Therapist and Equipment Manager. The Aldergrove native comes to the Birds after working for the Brandon Wheat Kings of the Western Hockey League.

"Grant is a really qualified individual in his field," said Eagles President Peter Schaefer. "He's also got some personal training experience under his belt which will be a huge benefit to the team going forward, and we're excited to have him as a part of our hockey club."

Ammann joined the Wheat Kings in 2010 as the team's Athletic Therapist. Prior to that, he spent time at the Performance Institute as a Strength and Conditioning Coach. He has also worked for the BCHL's Burnaby Express, the gold medal winning Team BC at the 2011 Canada Winter Games and Major League Soccer's Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

The Eagles would like to welcome Ammann to the organization.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Cameron to Attend SAIT

For immediate release: June 18, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that forward Trevor Cameron has committed to attend the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, beginning in the 2013-2014 season.

SAIT is located in Calgary. The Trojans play in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference and are coming off a berth in the championship final where they lost to the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology 3-1 in the best-of-five series.

"I flew over there and met the coach, Ken Babey, and he's a really good guy and a knowledgeable hockey coach," said Cameron. "I'm really excited to go to school and get on with my life."

Cameron came to Surrey in a trade from the Notre Dame Hounds of the SJHL in December of 2011. In his time with the Eagles, the Mission native put up 52 points in 84 regular season games. He was also a key contributor for the Birds in their run to the RBC Cup semi-final, tallying 20 points in 27 post-season games in 2013.

"We're very proud of Trevor for taking the next step in his hockey career," said Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Matt Erhart. "He was a tireless worker with the Eagles and was one of our leaders this past year. As his numbers proved throughout the playoffs, he was a key part of our run, and we're glad that he's going to a good hockey program at SAIT."

Cameron becomes the 13th member of the 2012-2013 Surrey Eagles to commit to play college hockey, joining Devon Toews (Quinnipiac, 2013), Michael Santaguida (Vermont, 2013), Craig Wyszomirski (Merrimack, 2013), Adam Tambellini (North Dakota, 2013), Brady Shaw (Vermont, 2013), Dan O'Keefe (Yale, 2013), Michael Stenerson (Vermont, 2013), Troy Paterson (UW-Eau Claire DIII, 2013) Brett Mulcahy (Holy Cross, 2014), Drew Best (Vermont, 2014), Demico Hannoun (Michigan Tech, 2014) and Jordan Klimek (Northern Michigan, 2014).

The Eagles would like to congratulate Cameron on his accomplishment.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Eagles Ink Trio of Forwards

For immediate release: June 13, 2013

Left to right: Ryan Simpson, Danton Heinen, Dylan Plitt
Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that forwards Dylan Plitt (1994), Danton Heinen (1995) and Ryan Simpson (1996) have committed to play for the team, beginning in the 2013-2014 season.

"The organization is very excited to add three highly sought after prospects to the Eagles program," said Head Coach and GM Matt Erhart. "Each player brings their own unique skill set, and all three are going to be key contributors for the team going forward."

Plitt comes to the Eagles from Team Comcast U18 where he had 10 goals and 22 assists in 39 games last year. The native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has already committed to attend the University of Vermont and will eventually join former Surrey standouts Brady Shaw, Michael Stenerson and Michael Santaguida along with current Birds forward Drew Best on the Catamounts.

"I'm really looking forward to playing for the Eagles," said Plitt. "I've heard nothing but good things about the coaching staff, and I'm hoping I can help the team out and hopefully win another championship."

Heinen was a key part of the Richmond Sockeyes' run to the Keystone Cup last season. A Langley native, he finished 11th in PIJHL scoring in the regular season, putting up an impressive 21 goals and 28 assists in 49 games. The 17-year-old continued his strong play in the playoffs, scoring 29 points in 25 post-season games as the Sockeyes won the Western Canadian Junior B Championship. He also appeared in two games for the Merritt Centennials last year.

"I've heard a lot of good things about the Eagles," said Heinen. "They seem like a great organization, and I think playing in Surrey will be a great fit for me. They know how to win, and I'm really excited for training camp."

Simpson, who hails from Abbotsford but spent part of his childhood in White Rock, split the 2012-2013 season with the BCHL's Salmon Arm Silverbacks and the PIJHL's Aldergrove Kodiaks. The 17-year-old had one point in 16 games with the 'Backs while tallying four goals and 10 assists in 16 games in Aldergrove.

"I'm really excited," said Simpson of joining the Birds. "They've got a great coaching staff that's had success and a good ownership group. Obviously they just won the BCHL title, and I grew up in White Rock, so I'm looking forward to it."

The Eagles would like to welcome Plitt, Heinen and Simpson to the organization.

BCHL AGM News

The BCHL announced a couple of changes coming out of its Board of Governors meetings in Richmond last week. Most notably, the regular season will be expanded to 58 games for 2013-2014.

Here's the press release from the league:

The British Columbia Hockey League completed its 2013 annual general meeting last week in Richmond with a number of changes made to the administration of the league moving forward.

First, the league will conduct a 58-game season in 2013-14. Each club will play two games that count in the standings at the Bauer BCHL Showcase Sept. 6 to 8 in Chilliwack and then play 28 home and 28 away dates to complete the regular season.

There is currently no playoff structure that has been agreed upon for the upcoming campaign. Teams are being asked to submit their ideas and a format will be announced prior to the Showcase.

Second, the BCHL has changed its media policy surrounding the Jan. 10 roster deadline. For any given transaction, teams will be allowed to release information to media as soon as they have made the league office aware that all players involved in that transaction have been notified.

Third, with the BCHL signing an equipment agreement with Bauer, all players must use the Bauer Supreme Team Stick. Failure to comply will result in severe financial penalties to the club. These will escalate with repeat offences. For protective gear, teams are allowed to use up remaining new equipment from previous seasons with the understanding that future orders will be made through Bauer.

Finally, NHL linesman Brad Lazarowich has officially joined the league’s officiating program as the associate director of officiating to head director Derek Adams. Lazarowich was able to monitor and provide mentorship to young officials last season during the NHL lockout and will continue to be a resource to the BCHL in developing the officiating program.

The BCHL regular season schedule was formed tentatively among the coaches and governors at the AGM; as there are several dates that need to be rearranged between teams, the league hopes to have the final schedule out before the end of June.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Paterson Commits to UW-Eau Claire

For immediate release: June 11, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that defenceman Troy Paterson has committed to attend the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, beginning in the 2013-2014 season.

The 20-year-old blue liner was acquired by the Birds from the Cowichan Valley Capitals at the BCHL Trade Deadline in early January, but his year was cut short in just his second game in a Surrey uniform when he suffered a season ending lower body injury. In his final year of junior hockey, Paterson posted four goals and nine assists in 29 games.

"We are very excited as an organization to see Troy take the next step in his hockey career," said Eagles Head Coach and GM Matt Erhart. "Unfortunately he only played two games for us this year, but after seeing him play over four years in the BCHL, I know he's very deserving of the opportunity to continue his hockey career at a great program like Wisconsin Eau Claire."

The University of Wisconsin Eau Claire is located in the city of Eau Claire. The Blugolds play in the NCAA's Division III Northern Collegiate Hockey Association and are coming off a national championship victory.

"They showed a lot of interest in me for an extended period of time," said Paterson of UW-Eau Claire. "Obviously, looking at their history and the success they've had last season and in the past, it was a big contributing factor."

Paterson becomes the 12th member of the 2012-2013 Surrey Eagles to commit to play college hockey, joining Devon Toews (Quinnipiac, 2013), Michael Santaguida (Vermont, 2013), Craig Wyszomirski (Merrimack, 2013), Adam Tambellini (North Dakota, 2013), Brady Shaw (Vermont, 2013), Dan O'Keefe (Yale, 2013), Michael Stenerson (Vermont, 2013), Brett Mulcahy (Holy Cross, 2014), Drew Best (Vermont, 2014), Demico Hannoun (Michigan Tech, 2014) and Jordan Klimek (Northern Michigan, 2014).

The Eagles would like to congratulate Paterson on his accomplishment.

Monday, June 10, 2013

BCHL Showcase Schedule Released

The BCHL released the schedule for the Bauer BCHL Showcase which will kick-off the 2013-2014 season in Chilliwack this coming September.

The Eagles will start their season on Friday, September 6th with a match-up against the West Kelowna Warriors at 7:30pm. This will mark the second straight year that the Warriors and Eagles will play each other at the showcase. Surrey will then have a quick turnaround and play next year's RBC Cup hosts, the Vernon Vipers, at 11:30am on Saturday, September 7th.

Here's the full release from the BCHL:

The BCHL has finalized the schedule for September's Bauer BCHL Showcase, being hosted for the second consecutive year at Chilliwack's Prospera Centre.

The Showcase schedule was an item on the recent BCHL annual general meeting last week in Richmond.

Each club will play two games that count towards the regular season standings. Last year at the inaugural event, there were close to 200 scouts from the college and professional ranks taking in the action.

The 2013 event runs from Friday, Sept. 6 to Sunday, Sept. 8. Games will be split between Prospera Centre's main and secondary sheets of ice.

Bauer Showcase Schedule (home team listed second in each matchup):

Friday, Sept. 6:

3:30 p.m. - Secondary Rink - Penticton Vees vs. Victoria Grizzlies
4:00 p.m. - Main Rink - Merritt Centennials vs. Coquitlam Express
7:00 p.m. - Secondary Rink - Trail Smoke Eaters vs. Langley Rivermen
7:30 p.m. - Main Rink - Surrey Eagles vs. West Kelowna Warriors

Saturday, Sept. 7:

11:30 a.m. - Secondary Rink - Vernon Vipers vs. Surrey Eagles
12:00 p.m. - Main Rink - Victoria Grizzlies vs. Salmon Arm SilverBacks
3:00 p.m. - Secondary Rink - West Kelowna Warriors vs. Nanaimo Clippers
3:30 p.m. - Main Rink - Alberni Valley Bulldogs vs. Penticton Vees
6:30 p.m. - Secondary Rink - Prince George Spruce Kings vs. Cowichan Valley Capitals
7:00 p.m. - Main Rink - Powell River Kings vs. Chilliwack Chiefs

Sunday, Sept. 8:

10:30 a.m. - Secondary Rink - Salmon Arm SilverBacks vs. Powell River Kings
11:00 a.m. - Main Rink - Coquitlam Express vs. Alberni Valley Bulldogs
2:00 p.m. - Secondary Rink - Nanaimo Clippers vs. Prince George Spruce Kings
2:30 p.m. - Main Rink - Cowichan Valley Capitals vs. Trail Smoke Eaters
5:30 p.m. - Secondary Rink - Langley Rivermen vs. Merritt Centennials
6:00 p.m. - Main Rink - Chilliwack Chiefs. vs. Vernon Vipers

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Shaw Commits to Catamounts

For immediate release: June 6, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is pleased to announce that 20-year-old forward Brady Shaw has committed to attend the University of Vermont, beginning in the 2013-2014 season.

The Ottawa, Ontario native joined the Birds in October after he was acquired from Coquitlam and went on to lead the team in points with 38 goals and 32 assists in 54 regular season games. Shaw was also a big part of Surrey's deep playoff run, tallying 31 points in 27 post-season games.

"We're very excited for Brady," said Eagles Head Coach and GM Matt Erhart. "His play in the second half of the season and throughout the playoffs gave him a lot of good opportunities, and he's going to a great program at the University of Vermont."

The University of Vermont is located in the city of Burlington. The Catamounts play in the NCAA's Division I Hockey East Association. Shaw will join his Surrey teammates Michael Santaguida and Michael Stenerson at Vermont next year before Drew Best joins them for the 2014-2015 season.

"I visited Vermont with Michael Santaguida, knowing it was probably a front runner with Stenerson and Santaguida going and then Best going in a couple of years," said Shaw. "I went down there and checked it out, and it's everything I was looking for in a school and a hockey team, so I decided that I didn't need to see any other schools."

Shaw becomes the 11th member of the 2012-2013 Surrey Eagles to commit to an NCAA school, joining Devon Toews (Quinnipiac, 2013), Michael Santaguida (Vermont, 2013), Craig Wyszomirski (Merrimack, 2013), Adam Tambellini (North Dakota, 2013), Dan O'Keefe (Yale, 2013), Michael Stenerson (Vermont, 2013), Brett Mulcahy (Holy Cross, 2014), Drew Best (Vermont, 2014), Demico Hannoun (Michigan Tech, 2014) and Jordan Klimek (Northern Michigan, 2014).

The Eagles would like to congratulate Shaw on his accomplishment.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Schaefer Named President

For immediate release: June 4, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles Hockey Club is happy to announce that Assistant Coach and former NHLer Peter Schaefer has been named the President of the team. Schaefer will work with the Eagles' current staff and be involved in the overseeing of all business operations.

"As an ownership group, we were excited to have Peter as a part of the coaching staff last season," said Eagles majority owner Chuck Westgard. "He showed an interest in having an increased role, and we're extremely pleased that Peter will be taking over the daily operations of the team. We're looking forward to continuing to build a strong tradition with the Eagles, and Peter has become a big part of that with the success the team had last year."

Schaefer, a native of Yellow Grass, Saskatchewan, spent his junior career with the Brandon Wheat Kings of the WHL where he went to two Memorial Cup tournaments and scored 124 goals and 291 points over parts of four seasons. He was drafted 66th overall in the third round of the 1995 draft by the Vancouver Canucks and played 635 games in the NHL, split between Vancouver, Ottawa and Boston. He also spent time playing in Finland, Italy, and most recently Germany where he finished his career at the end of the 2010-2011 season before joining the Eagles' coaching staff in the summer of 2012.

"It was a fun first year in the organization, and I'm looking forward to being more involved with the team," said Schaefer. "I think we have a great opportunity to reach out to the community and have a larger impact off the ice while also improving and growing our hockey club on the ice."

Schaefer will remain behind the bench as an Assistant Coach, but now with the added role of President, he looks forward to working with the team's current sponsors as well as reaching out to new partners.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Michael Roberts Interview

I had a chance to chat with the newest Eagles forward Michael Roberts. We discussed the trade that brought Michael to Surrey from Vernon and looked ahead to his potential role on the Birds next season.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Dawson Commits to Eagles

For immediate release: May 30, 2013

Surrey, BC - The Surrey Eagles are pleased to announce that defenceman Matthew Dawson (1996) has committed to play for the hockey club, beginning in the 2013-2014 season. The Delta native officially joins the Eagles after playing a role in Surrey's run to the RBC Cup this past season as an affiliate player.

"With the departure of some of our key blue liners from last season, we're excited to have Matthew join our club as a young puck moving defenceman," said Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Matt Erhart. "Matthew performed beyond his years during our run to the RBC Cup, and we're looking forward to him being a part of our team for the 2013-2014 season."

The 16-year-old played in five regular season games for the Birds in the 2012-2013 season before appearing in 13 games in the post-season including every game at the Western Canada Cup and the RBC Cup. Dawson, who is listed at 5'10 and 160 lbs, played for the Delta Ice Hawks of the PIJHL last year, posting two goals and 12 assists in 37 regular season games.

"I'm very excited," said Dawson of joining the Eagles. "I finished the year with the team, and that was a great experience, but now to officially be a part of the team and the family is a great feeling."

The Eagles would like to welcome Dawson to the organization.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Eagles Looking for Athletic Therapist/Equipment Manager

The Eagles are looking for an Athletic Therapist and Equipment Manager. Here's the job posting from the team website:

Athletic Therapist/Equipment Manager

The Surrey Eagles of the British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL) are looking for an Athletic Therapist/Equipment Manager for the 2013-2014 season.

Position Description:

The athletic therapist/ equipment manager will be responsible for player injuries, sicknesses and general trainer and equipment manager duties. You must have a strong work ethic, strong communication skills, work well individually and as part of the team. You must be flexible with hours and have a good understanding of the hockey environment. Some of the specific duties included in this position:

Working with Team Doctors
Injury assessment, rehabilitation, and prevention
Communication of injuries to coaches and doctors
Documentation of injury treatment reports and prepare Hockey Canada and BCHL insurance claims
Assist with in-season workouts
Dressing Room Maintenance
Pre and post game warm up and cool down
Pre practice and pre game taping and wrapping
Skate Sharpening
Ordering of team equipment/sticks/ and medical supplies
Maintain inventory , maintenance and control all of equipment/sticks/team jerseys and medical supplies
All team laundry
Game preparation
Packing for Road trips
Arranging team arrival with visiting teams trainer
Maintain professional relationship with players
Other duties as assigned

Qualifications:

The successful candidate must be certified through CATA, and have strong communication skills. A minimum of an advanced certificate in an Athletic Therapist program, with a degree in Phys Ed, Sport Science, Kinesiology, or relevant degree. Hockey Canada trainer’s course and Speak Out are required for this position.

Please submit your resume and cover letter to Director of Business Operations Sharon Anderson sanderson@surreyeagles.ca. Only those shortlisted will be contacted.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Batch's Breakdown: RBC Cup

After being crowned the first ever champions of the Western Canada Cup, the Eagles made the long trip across the country to Summerside, PEI for the RBC Cup.

Sunday, May 12th vs. Truro Bearcats

The Birds opened the tournament a day after the rest of the teams. Truro came into the game after losing 7-1 to Brooks on the opening day, and the Eagles handed them a similar defeat, cruising to a 7-0 win. Michael Stenerson had a five point game while Demico Hannoun scored twice and Michael Santaguida made 24 saves for the shutout.

Monday, May 13th vs. Summerside Western Capitals

The round robin meeting between the two teams was an exciting back-and-forth affair. The two sides traded goals in the first before the Capitals pulled out to a 4-2 lead in the second. Surrey battled back in the third to tie the game at 4-4 thanks to tallies from Devon Toews and Adam Tambellini. Brett Mulcahy netted the OT winner for the Birds as Surrey improved to 2-0.

Wednesday, May 15th vs. Minnesota Wilderness

The Eagles had a much more complete effort against the USA representatives, winning 5-0. Five different players found the back of the net, and Santaguida posted his second shutout of the round robin, making 29 saves to become the first goalie since 1998 to post two goose-eggs in a single round robin at the RBC.

Thursday, May 16th vs. Brooks Bandits

Surrey concluded the round robin with a re-match of the Western Canada Cup final against the Brooks Bandits, and the Birds had arguably their worst start to a game all season, giving up three goals in the first seven minutes and falling behind 5-0 before the midway mark of the second period. The Eagles were able to find the net twice as Dan O'Keefe tallied his first of the year and Trevor Cameron scored a beautiful shorthanded goal, but it wasn't enough to overcome the deficit, and Surrey lost 5-2.

Saturday, May 18th vs. Summerside Western Capitals

The Eagles entered the semi-final having not played an elimination game all season. The second match-up between the two teams was as exciting as the first but much more cagey. Summerside opened the scoring in the final minute of the second period before the Eagles equalized early in the third off a Drew Best breakaway. The Western Capitals went ahead again a few minutes later after Danny Chiasson scored, but Surrey tied it up again when Mulcahy found the net to send the game to OT. The extra period was filled with controversy. Surrey had to kill off a lengthy five-on-three after a couple of questionable calls while Summerside forward Chris Caissy laid a devastating blind-side hit on Devon Toews that went unpenalized and knocked the Surrey blue liner out of action for a lengthy period of the overtime. Eventually, Caissy ended Surrey's season after making a nice move to find space in the slot and beat Santaguida.

Final Thoughts

Normally in this section, I would look at positives and negatives from the tournament, but with the season at a close, I feel it makes more sense to look at the tournament and the season as a whole rather than dwell on specific positives and negatives.

First of all, this season was an amazing run, and every Eagles player should be incredibly proud of what they accomplished. The Eagles defeated the eventual national champions and the runners up, and showed that they deserved to hang with the best in the country. Were they the better team in the semi-final game against Summerside? Yes, I believe they were. Did they deserve to be in the final? Yes, I believe they did. But the hockey gods don't always deliver in single game elimination scenarios, and that's just the way it is.

This team is one that I'll remember for a long time. A group that didn't look like it would be able to accomplish big things at the outset of the season came together, and with the help of some key acquisitions, turned into something special. As someone who had the opportunity to be around the players and coaching staff on almost a daily basis in the post-season, I can't say enough about how close-knit this team was and how committed they were to giving their best effort every single night.

And now as the season ends, the focus quickly turns to next year's edition of the Eagles, and the heavy task of replacing over half the team. With a short summer ahead, training camp isn't very far away at all, and before you know it, the Birds will be underway in the 2013-2014 season.

I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has made my first year in Surrey so special. The players who were welcoming and accommodating for interviews throughout the year and were so incredibly fun to watch on the ice. The front office staff for being so helpful with my transition to the booth and the volunteers who are the backbone of the team. To the fans and listeners who tuned-in to my broadcasts and read my articles all season long, thanks for listening and reading, and I hope that you enjoyed watching this team as much as I enjoyed covering them. I also must thank the coaching staff, particularly Matt Erhart who was gracious enough to allow me to interview him before every single game this season while also doing the weekly Matt Erhart Show and chatting with me for post-game video interviews during the playoffs. Matt's willingness to participate in all of my media endeavours made my job 100 times easier, and I look forward to many conversations with him again next season.

Finally, I want to wish good luck to the players who are moving on to the next stage of their lives. For some, the fall will bring a trip down south to an NCAA school to continue their hockey careers. For others, the beginning of the school year will mean playing hockey at a post-secondary institution in Canada while some players may have played their last competitive hockey game. The 2012-2013 Surrey Eagles consisted of some of the best young men I've ever had the pleasure of knowing, and I'm sure they will all go on to great things whether their accomplishments come on or off the ice.

And to those players who will be back next season, we'll see you at the SSA in August!

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Matt Erhart Show: May 24, 2013

On the final Matt Erhart Show of the 2012-2013 season, the Eagles' Head Coach and GM looked back on the year, discussed the completed trades that were announced on Thursday and looked ahead to preparations for next year.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Eagles Trade Three, Acquire One

For immediate release: May 23, 2013

Surrey, BC - On Thursday, the Surrey Eagles announced that three players have been traded as future considerations, completing deals that were made during the BCHL’s regular season. Forward Demico Hannoun and defenceman Jordan Klimek are on their way to the Vernon Vipers as part of the move that brought Adam Tambellini to Surrey while Vernon forward Michael Roberts will join the Eagles. Meanwhile, forward Kevan Kilistoff is off to the Langley Rivermen, completing the multi-team trade that saw the Eagles pick up Troy Paterson from Cowichan Valley.

"It is a tough day as a coach and GM when you have to part with three quality young men that all have bright futures in the game of hockey," said Eagles Head Coach and General Manager Matt Erhart. "In order for the Eagles to push through and capture the Fred Page and Western Canada Cups, we felt that the moves were necessary at the time the trades were made."

Roberts joins the Eagles after posting four goals and six assists in 53 games in his rookie season with the Vipers last year. The 18-year-old Vernon native spent the 2011-2012 season with the Revelstoke Grizzlies of the KIJHL where he scored over a point per game.

Hannoun heads to the Vipers after two seasons with the Eagles. In his time in Surrey, the 17-year-old tallied 59 points in 91 regular season games. The North Delta product was a big part of Surrey’s run to the semi-final at the RBC Cup, netting nine goals and 14 assists in 26 post-season games. Hannoun has committed to the Michigan Tech Huskies for the 2014-2015 season.

Klimek is also off to Vernon after completing his rookie season in Surrey. The Langley native had six goals and 17 assists in 52 regular season games -- including four game winning goals. The 17-year-old had only one goal in the post-season, but it was a big one as he found the back of the net in the final of the Western Canada Cup against the Brooks Bandits. Klimek has committed to the Northern Michigan Wildcats for the 2014-2015 season.

Kilistoff will have a chance to play for his hometown team as he’ll make the short trip to Langley. An 18-year-old BCHL rookie, Kilistoff had 17 points in 52 games in the regular season. His biggest goal of the playoffs came when he scored the overtime winner in Game 5 of the Fred Page Cup Final against the Penticton Vees to give Surrey a 3-2 lead in the series.

The Eagles would like to thank Hannoun, Klimek and Kilistoff for their time spent with the organization and wish them all the best in the future.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Tambellini Off to NHL Combine

Eagles forward Adam Tambellini will have a quick turnaround after the end of the RBC Cup as he'll head to Toronto next week for the NHL's scouting combine. Tambellini was the highest ranked Canadain Junior A player on NHL Central Scouting's end of season prospect list.

Here's the release from the BCHL:

Forwards Adam Tambellini of the Surrey Eagles and David Pope of the West Kelowna Warriors will soon be headed to Toronto to be put through the paces of the NHL scouting combine.

The event will take place May 27 to June 1 and the top 79 North American skaters, top seven goalies, top 14 European skaters and one European goalie will be there for a total of 101 athletes.

Tambellini is listed at No. 42 for his group while Pope is listed at No. 67.

Top-rated skaters Seth Jones, Nathan MacKinnon, Aleksandr Barkov, Jonathan Drouin and Valeri Nichushkin are expected to attend the combine as well.

For the link to the complete list of 101 players and the story on NHL.com - CLICK HERE

The 2013 NHL Entry Draft will be held on Sunday, June 30 at New Jersey's Prudential Centre.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Eagles' Season Ends in OT

The Surrey Eagles' season came to a heart-breaking end on Saturday night with a 3-2 overtime loss at the hands of the Summerside Western Capitals in the semi-final at the 2013 RBC Cup. Chris Caissy scored the winner for the hosts at 16:57 of the first overtime period to lift Summerside into Sunday's championship game against the Brooks Bandits.

The Birds out shot the Caps in the first period and had the better of the chances, but neither team was able to find the net. Eagles forward Colton Mackie was given a game misconduct less than five minutes into the game after a check from behind, reducing the Birds to 11 forwards in the early stages.

The middle frame was a similar story. Both sides had opportunities, but both Kevin Bailie in the Summerside net and Michael Santaguida in the Surrey goal played lights-out to keep the game scoreless. The game's first goal came in the final minute of the period when Summerside took the lead on the power play. Justin Rasumussen carried the puck below the goal line and made a nice centring pass to JP Harvey in front of the net, and Harvey made no mistake, firing a quick one-timer past Santaguida.

Surrey tied the game less than five minutes into the third after Drew Best was sprung in on a breakaway, and the Plymouth, Michigan native fired a wrister into the top shelf to tie the game. The Western Capitals answered back to retake the lead when Danny Chiasson chipped a rebound across the Surrey goal line, but the Birds would even the score once again. This time, it was the captain Brett Mulcahy who deftly deflected Dan O'Keefe's point shot into the back of the net, eventually sending the game to overtime.

Both teams had their opportunities in the overtime period before Caissy's winner. Demico Hannoun had the best chance for Surrey when Best found him in the slot with a pass off the left boards, and Hannoun tipped the puck on net, forcing Bailie into a difficult save. Caissy ended the game and the Eagles' season when he made a nice move to create some space in the slot and wired a shot just inside the left post.

The Eagles out shot the Capitals 52-45 in the game. Surrey went 0-for-4 on the power play while Summerside was 1-for-7.

The game marked the end of 11 junior careers for the Eagles as Michael Stenerson, Brady Shaw, Adam Tambellini, Devon Toews, Michael Santaguida, Craig Wyszomirski, Dan O'Keefe, Trevor Cameron, Troy Paterson, Anthony Brito and Tanner Lenting will all move on, either because of their age or an NCAA scholarship.

Surrey Player of the Game: Michael Santaguida

Summerside Player of the Game: Kevin Bailie

My 3 Stars:
1. Chris Caissy - Summerside
2. Kevin Bailie - Summerside
3. Michael Santaguida - Surrey

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Pre-Game Report: Eagles vs. Western Capitals

The Surrey Eagles will face the Summerside Western Capitals on Saturday in the second semi-final at the 2013 RBC Cup in Summerside, PEI. The Eagles took the round robin meeting between the two teams 5-4 in overtime. The winner of the game will face the winner of Brooks vs. Minnesota in the national championship game on Sunday.

Surrey is coming off its lone loss of the tournament as the Birds fell 5-2 to the Brooks Bandits in the final game of the round robin. The Eagles had a slow start to the game, allowing three goals in the first seven minutes of action. Michael Stenerson finished the round robin tied for the tournament lead in points with eight while Adam Tambellini was named the tournament's top forward, Devon Toews picked up top defenceman honours and Trevor Cameron was awarded an RBC Legacy Scholarship.

The Western Capitals are also coming off a loss as they were defeated by the Truro Bearcats 4-2 on Thursday. By the time the game began, the Caps knew they would be facing the Eagles in the semi-final and took the opportunity to rest a couple of players -- most notably starting goaltender Kevin Bailie who did not play in the game. Bailie was named the tournament's top goaltender on Friday after posting a 2.22 goals-against average and a .933 save percentage.

Where: Credit Union Place

When: 2:00pm PT/6:00pm AT

How to listen: Eagles Broadcast

How to watch: Fast Hockey



Friday, May 17, 2013

Eagles Win Awards at RBC

On Friday evening, the RBC Cup held its Awards Gala in Summerside, PEI, and Adam Tambellini, Devon Toews and Trevor Cameron walked away with hardware. Tambellini was named the tournament's top forward, Toews picked up the top defenceman award and Cameron was one of five winners of the RBC Legacy Scholarship.

Here's the release from Hockey Canada:

SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I. – The 2013 RBC Cup, Canada's 43rd National Junior A Championship, held its awards banquet on Friday night at the Harbourfront Theatre. The recipients of all six individual awards were announced at the banquet.

The awards were based on the tournament's preliminary round, which ran from Saturday to Thursday. The 2013 RBC Cup award winners are:

Most Valuable Player (Roland Mercier Trophy) – Cam Maclise (Brooks Bandits)
Top Goaltender – Kevin Bailie (Summerside Western Capitals)
Top Forward – Adam Tambellini (Surrey Eagles)
Top Defenceman – Devon Toews (Surrey Eagles)
Most Sportsmanlike Player (Tubby Schmalz Trophy) – Mike Dietrich (Minnesota Wilderness)
Top Scorer – Anthony Paskaruk (Brooks Bandits)

In addition, Brooks Bandits (Alberta Junior Hockey League) forward Cam Maclise was presented with the 2013 RBC Canadian Junior Hockey League Player of the Year award. A third-year Bandit and Brooks’ captain this season, Cam Maclise finished in the top three in Alberta Junior Hockey League scoring for the second consecutive year, scoring 27 goals and adding a league-leading 56 assists, sparking an offence that scored almost 100 goals more than any other AJHL team. Maclise was rewarded for his offensive exploits with the AJHL MVP award, and was named Brooks’ most valuable player and top forward for the second year in a row.

Thomas Martin of the Vaudreuil-Dorion Mustangs (Ligue de hockey junior AAA du Qu├ębec) was on hand in Summerside to receive the RBC National Junior A Scholarship. Martin was chosen from 10 finalists – one from each of the Canadian Junior Hockey League's member leagues – to receive the $5,000 scholarship.

The RBC Cup Legacy Scholarships were also handed out at the awards banquet. Established following the 2004 RBC Royal Bank Cup in Grande Prairie, Alta., and contributed to following successful National Junior A Championships in Weyburn, Sask., Prince George, B.C., and Cornwall, Ont., these $500 scholarships are awarded to one graduating 20-year-old player from each of the five participating teams.

The RBC Cup Legacy Scholarship winners are:
Brooks Bandits – Chris Muscoby
Minnesota Wilderness – Mike Dietrich
Summerside Western Capitals – Matthew Kelly
Surrey Eagles – Trevor Cameron
Truro Bearcats – Shayne Campbell

After six days of preliminary round action, the semifinals are set for Saturday. In the early game at 2 p.m. AT, the Brooks Bandits (3-1) will take on the Minnesota Wilderness (1-3), while the Surrey Eagles (3-1) will face the host Summerside Western Capitals (2-2) in the late semifinal at 6 p.m. AT.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Birds Fall to Bandits

The Surrey Eagles fell to 3-1 in the round robin at the RBC Cup in Summerside, PEI after a 5-2 loss at the hands of the Brooks Bandits on Thursday afternoon at Credit Union Place. Dan O'Keefe and Trevor Cameron had the goals for Surrey in a losing cause.

Brooks came firing out of the gate, and the Bandits tallied three times in the opening seven minutes of the game. Brandon Bruce opened the scoring just over a minute in when he chipped a rebound past Michael Santaguida. Mark Reners made it 2-0 after a nice play by Dakota Mason to find him in the slot with a pass off the left wing, and Tyson McCallum scored in his first game of the tournament at 6:52. Surrey's best chance of the period came in the late stages when Brett Mulcahy wired a shot off the post, but the Birds couldn't find the net in the first.

The Bandits continued their barrage of goals in the second period. Anthony Petruzzelli scored to put the Alberta club ahead by four after an odd bounce in the Surrey zone left him alone in front with lots of time to beat Santaguida. Cam Maclise added to the Brooks lead when he chipped a rebound into the Surrey net at 7:43. The Birds responded with a pair of goals of their own in the latter stages of the frame. Dan O'Keefe scored his first as an Eagle when a centring pass bounced off his leg and past Brooks goalie Michael Fredrick to put Surrey on the board, and Trevor Cameron scored shorthanded, dipsy-doodling through the Bandits' defense before undressing Fredrick to make it 5-2.

Surrey tried to battle back in the third period, but the Birds couldn't beat Fredrick. The Eagles got into some penalty trouble in the late stages of the game, stunting their comeback attempt, and the Bandits clinched the first seed coming out of the round robin with the victory.

Neither side scored on the power play in the game as the Eagles went 0-for-4 while the Bandits were 0-for-7. Brooks out shot Surrey 36-24.

As a result of the loss, the Eagles will finish either second or third, depending on the results of the Thursday night game between the Summerside Western Capitals and Truro Bearcats. Either way, the Eagles will face Summerside in the semi-finals on Saturday. The opening face-off will be at 2:00pm PT/6:00pm AT.

Surrey Player of the Game: Dan O'Keefe

Brooks Player of the Game: Chris Muscoby

My 3 Stars:
1. Anthony Petruzzelli - Brooks
2. Cam Maclise - Brooks
3. Chris Muscoby - Brooks

Pre-Game Report: Eagles vs. Bandits

For the third time in less than three weeks, the Surrey Eagles will take on the AJHL champion Brooks Bandits. This time, the meeting comes as the final round robin game for both teams at the RBC Cup in Summerside, PEI. The teams played each other twice at the Crescent Point Energy Western Canada Cup in Nanaimo with the Bandits winning 4-2 on April 27th, but the Eagles won when it counted, defeating Brooks 4-1 in the tournament final on May 4th.

Surrey enters Thursday's action as the top team in the round robin with a perfect 3-0 record. The Eagles downed the Minnesota Wilderness 5-0 on Wednesday as Michael Santaguida picked up his second shutout in three games. The Birds got contributions from all over their roster in the victory as five different players found the net and 11 players had at least a point. Michael Stenerson remains the leading scorer in the tournament with eight points in three games while Devon Toews has more points than any other blue liner with six.

Brooks is 2-1 thus far in the round robin. The Bandits beat Truro 7-1 in their opener before downing Minnesota 6-3. In their last game, they lost to the hosts from Summerside 3-1 -- a game in which the Bandits took 13 minor penalties. Offensively, the big guns have been getting it done for Brooks in the tournament as Cam Maclise, Anthony Paskaruk and Anthony Petruzzelli have combined for 18 points to this point.

Where: Credit Union Place

When: 11:00am PT/3:00pm AT

How to listen: Eagles Broadcast

How to watch: Fast Hockey



Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Surrey Shuts Out Minnesota

The Surrey Eagles improved to 3-0 at the RBC Cup with a 5-0 shutout victory over the SIJHL's Minnesota Wilderness. Trevor Cameron was named Surrey's player of the game after picking up a goal and an assist while Michael Santaguida made 29 saves for his second goose-egg of the tournament. Santaguida becomes the first goaltender to post two shutouts in an RBC round-robin since Peter Wishloff achieved the feat while playing for the Eagles in 1998.

Surrey out shot the Wilderness 19-8 in the opening frame, and the Birds found the net after the midway mark when Nic Pierog fired a shot past Minnesota goalie JoJo Jeanetta from the right circle. Trevor Cameron added his name to the score sheet with less than 90 seconds to go in the period after Demico Hannoun forced a turnover at the Minnesota blue line and passed to Adam Tambellini who quickly dished the puck to Cameron for a tap-in at the left post.

Drew Best made it 3-0 at 11:20 of the second with a nice shot that found the top corner on the short side from in close at the bottom of the right circle. Surrey struck again in the final minute of the period after Wilderness defenceman Benjamin Michaud took a penalty with 10 seconds left, and Michael Stenerson scored before the end of the stanza when he tipped a Devon Toews point shot past Jeanetta with only four seconds remaining.

The Birds shut it down in the third and played a very defensive 20 minutes, keeping the Minnesota forwards at bay, save for a couple of goal-mouth scrambles. Kevan Kilistoff rippled the mesh off the rush in the late stages after Cameron found him with a nice pass on a three-on-two to complete the 5-0 victory for Surrey.

Surrey's power play struck once on seven opportunities in the game while Minnesota was 0-for-6. The Eagles finished ahead on the shot clock 36-29.

As a result of the loss, the Wilderness will finish fourth in the round robin and will face the first place team on Semi-Final Saturday. Meanwhile, the Birds hold their destiny in their own hands as they can finish first with a victory in their final round robin game against Brooks on Thursday. Face-off at 11am PT/3pm AT.

Surrey Player of the Game: Trevor Cameron

Minnesota Player of the Game: Mike Dietrich

My 3 Stars:
1. Trevor Cameron - Surrey
2. Demico Hannoun - Surrey
3. Kevan Kilistoff - Surrey

Pre-Game Report: Eagles vs. Wilderness

The Surrey Eagles will try to remain the only undefeated team at the Royal Bank Cup when they face the Minnesota Wilderness on Wednesday afternoon in Summerside, PEI. The two teams have never met before as the Wilderness are the first American team to ever qualify for the RBC.

The Birds are coming off an exciting 5-4 OT win over Summerside on Monday. Brett Mulcahy netted the winner while Adam Tambellini scored twice and picked up the player of the game. Heading into Wednesday's action, Eagles forward Michael Stenerson is tied for the tournament lead in the points with one goal and six assists while Michael Santaguida has the top goals-against-average in the tournament at 1.86.

The Wilderness is 1-2 in the tournament after losing their first two games to Summerside and Brooks before defeating Truro 5-3 on Tuesday. Minnesota qualified for the RBC out of the Central Region. After winning the SIJHL, the Wilderness edged out three teams from Ontario to capture the Dudley Hewitt Cup. Mike Dietrich has led the offensive front for Minnesota all season long. The 20-year-old had 28 goals and 49 assists in the regular season and is coming off a four point game against Truro.

Where: Credit Union Place

When: 11:00am PT/3:00pm AT

How to listen: Eagles Broadcast

How to watch: Fast Hockey



Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Minnesota Wilderness: By the Numbers

The Surrey Eagles will look to improve to 3-0 at the 2013 RBC Cup when they face the Minnesota Wilderness on Wednesday afternoon. Here's a look at the Wilderness.

Regular Season Record: 51-3-0-0 – 1st SIJHL
Playoff Record: 8-2 - (Defeated Minnesota Iron Rangers 4-0; Defeated Fort Frances 4-2)
Dudley Hewitt Cup Record: 3-1 (Defeated St. Michael's in the final)

Regular Season Power Play: 31.7%
Post-Season Power Play: 19.5%

Regular Season Penalty Kill: 91.5%
Post-Season Penalty Kill: 82.8%

Regular Season Top Scorers:
Mike Dietrich (28-49-77)
Jake Larson (44-28-72)
Jordan Shockley (20-39-59)
Jeremy Johnson (28-30-58)
Michael MacKinnon (18-34-52)

Playoff Top Scorers:
Mike Dietrich (8-7-15)
Jake Larson (4-6-10)
Jordan Shockley (3-7-10)
Dan Divis (5-4-9)
Jeremy Johnson (2-7-9)

Dudley Hewitt Cup Top Scorers: *Round Robin Only*
Jordan Shockley (3-1-4)
Jeremy Johnson (2-1-3)
Nick McCormack (1-2-3)
Joseph Drapluk (0-3-3)
Mike Dietrich (1-1-2)

Regular Season Goaltender Stats:
Gordy Defiel: 25-1-2, 1.39GAA, .945%, 8SO, 31GP
Joseph Jeanetta: 22-2-0, 1.79GAA, .937%, 5SO, 26GP

Playoff Goaltender Stats:
Gordy Defiel: 8-2, 1.82GAA, .935%, 0SO, 10GP
Joseph Jeanetta: 0-0, 0.00GAA, 1.000%, 0SO, 1GP

Dudley Hewitt Cup Goaltender Stats:
Gordy Defiel: 3-0, 0.94GAA, .968%, 2SO, 3GP
Joseph Jeanetta: 0-1, 3.11GAA, .850%, 0SO, 1GP

Other Notes:
The Wilderness are the first American team to reach the RBC Cup.
Minnesota will be moving to the US based NAHL, beginning next season.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Eagles Comeback to Beat Western Capitals

Brett Mulcahy netted the winning goal at 8:43 of overtime as the Surrey Eagles edged the Summerside Western Capitals 5-4 in a thrilling game at Credit Union Place. Adam Tambellini was named Surrey’s player of the game after tallying twice in the victory.

The Birds never led in the hockey game as the Capitals opened the scoring when Chris Caissy beat Michael Santaguida with a backhander from the slot. Surrey evened the score when Adam Tambellini found the back of the net for his first of the tournament later in the period, and the teams went to the dressing room tied 1-1.

Summerside went ahead again in the middle frame as JP Harvey tipped a Danny Chiasson point shot into the net on the power play. Trevor Cameron made it 2-2 less than two minutes later when he took a pass from Tambellini off the rush and beat Summerside goalie Kevin Bailie up high. The Western Capitals got another man advantage later in the stanza, and Mitch Maynard capitalized to put Summerside up 3-2. Caissy netted his second of the game before the end of the period, and the Eagles went to the third down by two.

Surrey came out with a strong effort in the third, and Devon Toews rippled the mesh on the power play from the right circle to pull Surrey to within one. Tambellini scored his second of the night at a crucial time, tying the game with less than five minutes remaining when he batted the puck out of mid-air past Bailie to send the game to overtime.

The two teams both had their chances in the extra period, but Mulcahy ended the game when his sharp angle shot from the right wing found its way into the top corner of the Summerside net to give the Eagles the come-from-behind victory.

Surrey was 2-for-3 on the power play while Summerside went 2-for-4. The Birds out shot the Western Capitals 47-37.

The Eagles will have the day off on Tuesday before returning to action against the Minnesota Wilderness on Wednesday. Face-off will be at 11:00am PT/3:00pm AT.

Surrey Player of the Game: Adam Tambellini

Summerside Player of the Game: Chris Caissy

My 3 Stars:
1. Adam Tambellini - Surrey
2. Chris Caissy - Summerside
3. Michael Stenerson - Surrey

Pre-Game Report: Eagles vs. Western Capitals

The Surrey Eagles return to action on Monday when they take on the Summerside Western Capitals in their second game at the RBC Cup in PEI. Monday’s game will not mark the first meeting between the two teams as they faced each other twice in the 1997 RBC Cup which was also held in Summerside. The Eagles won the round robin meeting 3-2 in overtime, but the Capitals edged the Birds 4-3 in the final to win the tournament.

Surrey is coming off an impressive 7-0 win over the Truro Bearcats on Sunday to open the tournament. Demico Hannoun and Brady Shaw each chipped in with two goals in the win while Michael Stenerson put up five points and Michael Santaguida pitched a 24 save shutout. The Eagles' special teams were a big key in the victory as well. The Surrey power play scored three times on six opportunities while holding the Bearcats off the board on four chances with the man advantage.

The Western Capitals also won their opening game, defeating the Minnesota Wilderness 5-1 on Saturday night. Danny Chiasson scored twice as the hometown team came back from an early 1-0 deficit, scoring five unanswered goals. Chiasson has been a big key for the Caps all season long as he led the team with 88 points in 48 games in the regular season and posted 21 points in 13 games in the MHL playoffs.

Where: Credit Union Place

When: 3:30pm PT/7:30pm AT

How to listen: Eagles Broadcast

How to watch: Fast Hockey



Sunday, May 12, 2013

Summerside Western Capitals: By the Numbers

The Surrey Eagles will take on the host Summerside Western Capitals in their second game at the 2013 RBC Cup on Monday. Here's a look at the Western Capitals.

Regular Season Record: 43-7-2-0 – 1st Meek Division, 1st MHL
Playoff Record: 12-1 - (Defeated Miramichi 4-0; Defeated Woodstock 4-0; Defeated Truro 4-1)
Fred Page Cup Record: 3-2 (Lost to Truro in the Final)

Regular Season Power Play: 23.88%
Playoff Power Play: 26.15%
Fred Page Cup Power Play: 10.53%

Regular Season Penalty Kill: 87.34%
Playoff Penalty Kill: 78.13%
Fred Page Cup Penalty Kill: 95.24%

Regular Season Top Scorers:
Danny Chiasson (34-54-88)
Mitchell Maynard (21-49-70)
Jonathan Aubertin (32-27-59)
JP Harvey (30-29-59)
Colton Parsons (20-34-54)

Playoff Top Scorers:
Danny Chiasson (12-9-21)
Christopher Caissy (6-11-17)
JP Harvey (9-6-15)
Scott Trask (4-7-11)
Jason Seed (3-8-11)

Fred Page Cup Top Scorers:
JP Harvey (5-1-6)
Danny Chiasson (0-3-3)
Christopher Caissy (2-0-2)
Mitchell Maynard (1-1-2)
Justin Rasmussen (0-2-2)

Regular Season Goaltender Stats:
Kevin Bailie: 9-1-0, 1.90GAA, .938%, 2SO, 11GP
Jacob Riley: 23-7-4, 2.37GAA, .915%, 2SO, 34GP

Playoff Goaltender Stats:
Kevin Bailie: 10-1, 1.81GAA, .934%, 1SO, 11GP
Jacob Riley: 2-0, 1.98GAA, .917%, 0SO, 3GP

Fred Page Cup Goaltender Stats:
Kevin Bailie: 3-2, 1.45GAA, .960%, 2SO, 5GP

Other Notes:
Summerside's roster features eight PEI natives.
Including the 2013 tournament, Summerside has hosted the RBC Cup three times -- more than any other city.

Birds Blowout Bearcats

The Surrey Eagles opened the 2013 RBC Cup with an exclamation point, defeating the MHL's Truro Bearcats by a score of 7-0 on Sunday afternoon in Summerside, PEI. Demico Hannoun was named Surrey's player of the game after scoring two goals while Michael Santaguida made 24 saves for the shutout.

The Birds were given a number of power plays in the first period, and they capitalized on their opportunities. Hannoun opened the scoring at 5:22 on the man advantage with a slap shot from the top of the left circle that snuck between the legs of Truro goalie Shayne Campbell. Michael Stenerson extended the lead a few minutes later after a nice move to dance around Campbell and tuck the puck into the open net. Hannoun made it 3-0, tallying another power play marker with another shot from the left wing. After Surrey's third goal, Campbell was pulled from the Bearcats' net after allowing three goals on six shots. Brady Shaw scored on Campbell's replacement Jacob Fancy before the end of the frame, knocking home a rebound on the man advantage  to put the Eagles ahead by four.

Surrey got two more goals in the middle frame. First, Stefan Burzan had a great opportunity when he went hard to the net from the left boards and just lost control of the puck at the last minute, but on the same shift, Burzan potted his first of the tournament, beating Fancy after a nice pass from Kevan Kilistoff. Shaw picked up his second goal of the evening later in the stanza when he chipped a rebound over Fancy and into the net after a frantic goal-mouth scramble in the Bearcats' end.

Craig Wyszomirski put his name on the score sheet less than 90 seconds into the third period when he wired a hard wrist shot past Fancy from the slot to give Surrey a seven goal lead. After that, the Birds put it into cruise control and coasted to the shutout victory.

Surrey was officially 3-for-6 on the power play, although their last man advantage was only two seconds long. Truro was 0-for-4. The Eagles out shot the Bearcats 34-24.

The Eagles return to action on Monday against the host Summerside Western Capitals. Face-off is at 3:30pm PT/7:30pm AT.

Surrey Player of the Game: Demico Hannoun

Truro Player of the Game: Brandon Pye

My 3 Stars:
1. Michael Stenerson - Surrey
2. Demico Hannoun - Surrey
3. Brady Shaw - Surrey

Pre-Game Report: Eagles vs. Bearcats

The Surrey Eagles will play their first game at the 2013 RBC Cup against the Truro Bearcats on Sunday. The game marks the first ever meeting between the two clubs. The Bearcats qualified for the RBC by winning the Fred Page Cup -- the eastern regional tournament -- which they hosted.

The Birds haven't played in over a week after defeating the Brooks Bandits in the final at the Western Canada Cup last Saturday in Nanaimo. Surrey will be the last team at the RBC to play a game as the other four teams all opened the tournament on Saturday. Sunday's action will mark the first game at the RBC for the Eagles since May 10, 1998 when the Birds captured the national title with a 4-1 win over the Weyburn Red Wings from Saskatchewan.

Truro is playing in its first ever RBC. The Nova Scotia club opened the tournament with a 7-1 loss at the hands of Brooks on Saturday. Goaltender Shayne Campbell was given the hook early in the second period after allowing six goals. Jordan Coccimiglio scored the lone marker for the Bearcats while Adam Guy was named Truro's player of the game. Up front, Kyle Morrison led the Maritime Hockey League in points in the regular season with 35 goals and 53 assists in 50 games.

Where: Credit Union Place

When: 11:00am PT/3:00pm AT

How to listen: Eagles Broadcast

How to watch: Fast Hockey



Saturday, May 11, 2013

Truro Bearcats: By the Numbers

After travelling to Summerside, PEI, the Surrey Eagles will open the 2013 Royal Bank Cup on Sunday with a match-up against the Truro Bearcats of the Maritime Hockey League. The Bearcats lost in the MHL Final but qualified for the RBC by winning the Fred Page Cup as hosts of the Eastern Regional tournament.

Regular Season Record: 38-9-0-5 – 1st Eastlink Division, 2nd MHL
Playoff Record: 9-9 - (Defeated Pictou County 4-3; Defeated Amherst 4-2; Lost to Summerside 4-1)
Fred Page Cup Record: 4-0 (Defeated Summerside in the Final)

Regular Season Power Play: 24.9%
Playoff Power Play: 18.6%
Fred Page Cup Power Play: 28.6%

Regular Season Penalty Kill: 83.2%
Playoff Penalty Kill: 78.3%
Fred Page Cup Penalty Kill: 88.2%

Regular Season Top Scorers:
Kyle Morrison (35-53-88)
Travis Moore (18-26-44)
Grant West (24-17-41)
Brandon Pye (20-21-41)
Travis Fernley (18-23-41)

Playoff Top Scorers:
Kyle Morrison (10-11-21)
Jordan Coccimiglio (6-12-18)
Brandon Pye (8-4-12)
Patrick Downe (4-8-12)
Tyler Morrison (4-8-12)

Fred Page Cup Top Scorers:
Zack Evans-Renaud (1-5-6)
Brandon Pye (3-1-4)
Philip Fife (2-2-4)
Dylan McGuigan (2-2-4)
Tyler Morrison (0-4-4)

Regular Season Goaltender Stats:
Shayne Campbell: 22-7-7, 2.39GAA, .915%, 2SO, 37GP
Jacob Fancy: 12-2-2, 2.20GAA, .915%, 0SO, 16GP

Playoff Goaltender Stats:
Shayne Campbell: 8-9, 2.64GAA, .900%, 0SO, 17GP
Jacob Fancy: 1-0, 4.00GAA, .857%, 0SO, 2GP

Fred Page Cup Goaltender Stats:
Shayne Campbell: 4-0, 1.84GAA, .941%, 0SO, 4GP

Other Notes:
Kyle Morrison finished tied for first in scoring in the MHL regular season along with Summerside's Danny Chiasson.
Truro will compete in its first ever RBC Cup.