Peter Kung

August 13, 2013, Victoria, BC (ISN) – Coming off a short summer break, the defending league champion Cougars are set to open training camp this Thursday at the Archie Browning Sports Centre in Esquimalt.

With that being said, there will be many positions up for grabs, which include both spots reserved for 16-year-old players./p>

Several familiar names will not be present, most noticeably Brody Coulter and Sam Rice, both of whom played out their final year of junior eligibility last year and will attend the University of Victoria and University of Central Oklahoma respectively.

Other notable losses include Evan Roch (graduation), Rhys Williams (graduation), Ben Kinshella (graduation), Brandon Egli (signed with the Victoria Grizzlies – BCHL), Brandon Workun (signed with the Flin Flon Bombers – SJHL), Robert Zadra (signed with the Melfort Mustangs – SJHL), and Dane Feeney (signed with the Dryden Ice Dogs – SIJHL).

“The Cougars organization had another successful season moving on a large number of last season players to Junior A or college,” Cougars’ head coach Mark Van Helvoirt said. “It has been a busy summer.”

Despite the exodus of many key players, Victoria still has a strong nucleus to build around. However, it will take several more hard-working, self-motivated players to make up another championship calibre team.

“We will evaluate these young men based on their character, work ethic, skill, and their ability to learn and improve. We look for players who truly put their team first and those who truly love this game,” Van Helvoirt said.

And according to Van Helvoirt, this is always a fun time of the year.

“We get to see how hard these young men will work to be a part of our organization and team,” Van Helvoirt said.

Victoria opens the regular season at home against the Comox Valley Glacier Kings on September 5.


August 15 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

August 16 6:00 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.

August 17 4:00 p.m. to 6:45 p.m.

August 18 9:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.

August 20 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

August 22 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

August 24 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

August 25 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

August 27 v.s. Nanaimo Buccaneers (A.B.S.C., 7:15 p.m.)

August 29 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

August 31 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

September 1 v.s. Westshore Wolves (A.B.S.C., 4:15 p.m.)