Generals looking for win in busy weekend
Oceanside’s Save On Foods Generals head into a busy weekend in search of their first win of the season with some quality reinforcements.
On Thursday, Generals’ GM and head of hockey operations, Dave Johnston, made it official the community-owned junior hockey club has secured the return of home-town D-man Nick Bell, 20.
Nick played the last two seasons with the BCHL’s Nanaimo Clippers after being an integral part of the Generals VIJHL championship team.
“We’re excited,” Johnston said of Bell’s return, adding “Nick will bring great leadership and experience as well as a work ethic that will be the benchmark for our young team to follow.”
The six foot, 200 pounder from Nanoose Bay was an associate captain with the Jr. A Clippers last year, but was not invited back to camp this year as the team goes with a younger back end.
Great news for the Generals, said Johnston, adding “he’s a rugged stay at home defensemen that’s going to provide our young team with much-needed leadership.”
Johnston and the Generals also announced the signing of 17-year-old Taylor Grobowski who was recently one of the last cuts released by the Clippers after playing last year for the North Island Silvertips.
“Taylor is a very skilled player who always plays with an edge,” said Johnston.
The Generals have also added 6’5” forward Josiah Hobighorst from Colorado, who Johnston describes as “a big, very skilled forward.”
“And better, I mean Grobowski is going to be our number one centre,” Johnston answered quickly when asked if the Generals have all of a sudden become a little bigger, a little tougher and a little more experienced. “The one thing about adding players this time of year, they are definitely impact players.”
All great additions and sure sign Johnston and the rest of the Generals coaching staff have been working hard to right the ship.
“We’ve added some depth to our line-up, for sure.”
Going win-less in your first four games of the season may not sit well with the players and the coaches, but it is part of the process (in any sport), and in a league where everyone makes the playoffs, and where players are regularly plucked from the lineup by Jr. A clubs, the season really is about the journey.
“That’s exactly it,” said Johnston, adding that while September and the start of a new season is always extra challenging, “the focus is still on results,” said Johnston, adding “there’s always lots of change sand lots of learning that goes on, but I want to be very clear that at the end of the day going 0-and-4 out of the gate is not acceptable for Generals hockey.”
All three players will be in the lineup starting Friday.
THE GENERALS OPEN their VIJHL three-game stand tonight (Friday) in Saanich against the Braves, and return home to Oceanside Place for a weekend double header. The Gens host the first place Victoria Cougars on Saturday (7:30 p.m. start) and return to the rink Sunday against the Campbell River Storm (3 p.m. start).