File photo Alberni Valley Bulldogs goaltender Connor LaCouvee thwarts Victoria Grizzlies forward Myles Fitzgerald during BCHL action in the 2013-14 season.

Qualicum Beach goalie one step away from NHL

LaCouvee spent time in BCHL with Cowichan Valley, Alberni Valley

Connor LaCouvee of Qualicum Beach is one step away from the National Hockey League.

The 24-year-old goaltender and Oceanside Minor Hockey product – who played in the B.C. Hockey League for the Cowichan Valley Capitals and Alberni Valley Bulldogs – this week agreed to a professional tryout contract with the Utica Comets of the American Hockey League.

The Comets are the top farm club of the NHL’s Vancouver Canucks, who have been hit hard by goaltending injuries. Thatcher Demko, expected to be the starter in Utica this season, has been battling concussion issues. His backup, Richard Bachman, was called up by the Canucks after an injury to Anders Nilsson.

LaCouvee played for the Capitals in 2012-13 and was acquired by the Bulldogs in 2013-14 after a brief stint with the Merritt Centennials. He was chosen as Alberni Valley’s MVP for the season.

He then played three years of NCAA hockey with Boston University, where he graduated a year earlier with a summa cum laude honour. He then went on to join the Minnesota State Mankato, where he took a Master in Sport Management, finishing his collegiate career with a 36-15-6 record, a 2.19 goals-against average, and a .913 save percentage.

READ MORE: Canucks atop Pacific Division as October draws to a close

READ MORE: Lacouvee invited to NHL prospect camps

READ MORE: Bulldogs net a new netminder

READ MORE: Handful of former Caps playing in NCAA tournament

This season, he signed a deal with the ECHL’s Maine Mariners, an affiliate of the New York Rangers. He put up a 2-0-0 record with a 2.57 GAA and .929 save percentage in three games.

With the Comets a netminder short due to the recall of Bachman, they reached out to the Mariners and acquired LaCouvee on loan. He travelled to the Comets to Laval for a game against the Laval Rocket (top farm club of the Montreal Canadiens) on Friday night. The teams met in a rematch on Saturday, with LaCouvee serving as backup to Ivan Kulbakov in both games.

LaCouvee’s parents, Lesley and Francis, were thilled to hear of their son’s latest move up the hockey ladder.

“We are hoping he gets a chance to play,” said Francis.

“It is a lifetime dream. We’re pretty excited that he’s really doing well.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Ballenas JV Whalers reach final four in Subway Bowl competition

Gridiron squad tames Timberwolves 28-6, will face South Kamloops in semifinals

Parksville businesses encouraged to light up

Contest encourages stores to get into the holiday spirit

City risks causing ‘significant harm’ to some individuals: Dr. Paul Hasselback

Update: Proposed needle bylaw panned by health officer

Vancouver Island family reunited with Silver Cross medal after 40 years

‘It’s very moving’: Cilka LaTrace and siblings reflect on uncle’s military service medal

Parksville residents react to Don Cherry’s firing

Opinions mixed on if he should have been fired from Hockey Night in Canada

B.C. to restrict nicotine content, bring in 20% tax on vaping products

Province will also restrict candy and fruit flavoured vaping products to adult-only stores

Use of force deemed justifiable in arrest of suspect after snowy chase near Nanaimo

Independent Investigation Office of B.C. reports on incident from late last winter

‘It’s been 12 years’: Father of murdered B.C. real estate agent pleads for mayor’s help

Lindsay Buziak was stabbed to death on Feb. 2, 2008 in Saanich. Her case is unsolved.

B.C. woman sends fight to reduce preventable medical errors to Victoria

Teri McGrath and South Okanagan senior’s centre members presented 150 signature petition to local MLA

B.C. First Nation Chief Ed John faces historic sex charges

John served as minister for children and families under then-premier Ujjah Dosanjh

Yelling at your dog might hurt its long-term mental health: study

Researchers find dogs trained using negative reinforcement are more ‘pessimistic’

Transgender inmate in Surrey denied transfer to women’s prison

Petitioner argued denial of transfer to women’s prison was unreasonable and unfair

Community uses loophole to paint 16 rainbow crosswalks after B.C. council says no

So far 11 rainbows are painted and five planned, all since council denied the first proposal in September

Most Read