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The next generation of Spruce Kings

-Courtesy of the BCHL

The Spruce Kings head into the 2019-20 season as the defending Fred Page Cup champions after a 16-1 postseason saw them capture their first-ever league title. They went on to defeat the top-ranked Brooks Bandits in six games to win the Doyle Cup and made it all the way the championship game of the National Junior A Championship.

As is the case with most BCHL teams, there was plenty of turnover in the offseason as a big part of last year’s championship squad are moving on to play college hockey in the upcoming season. There was also another big change in Prince George off the ice as head coach Adam Maglio accepted a job in the WHL and the team promoted former assistant Alex Evin to lead role behind the bench.

Unlike most new head coaches in the league, Evin has an advantage having been a part of the Spruce Kings coaching staff for the past two seasons.

“I’m excited,” said Evin. “I’ve been very fortunate to have worked with [general manager] Mike [Hawes] and Adam the last two years. We have a formula here that works. My plan is not to change a lot. I think that would be silly. I couldn’t have come into a better spot, knowing all our players. Our whole staff has worked together to recruit all these guys this year. We’re in a good spot going forward.”

Acquired via trade

Jett Alexander (1999, G)

  • Hometown: Bloomfield, Ont.
  • Previous team: North York Rangers (OJHL)

Alexander is coming off an incredible season with North York where he not only won the league’s Best Goaltender award, but also was named the OJHL’s Most Valuable Player. He posted an eye-popping .945 save percentage and a 1.67 goals-against average in the regular season and continue his strong play into the postseason where he had a .936 save percentage and a 2.24 goals-against.

Evin’s scouting report:

“We identified Jett as a very viable replacement for Logan [Neaton]. We wanted someone with some experience. Jett’s a big goalie and he moves well. He’s also a winner. If you look at his success over the last few years, he’s obviously put up good numbers and that’s no fluke. He’s someone who can hopefully be consistent for us. He’s a really good person and a really good kid. We’re excited to bring him on board and help him with the next step in his career.”

Preston Brodziak (1999, F)

  • Hometown: Estevan, Sask.
  • Previous team: Cowichan Valley Capitals

Brodziak has spent the last two seasons in the BCHL. He debuted in the 2017-18 season with the Nanaimo Clippers and spent last year with Cowichan Valley. Over his two seasons in the league, he’s put up 50 points in 109 regular-season games and 10 in 18 playoff games.

Evin’s scouting report:

“Preston has obviously played in the league a little bit and he’s got some experience in the playoffs. He’s a hard-nose, gritty player that can play fast, so he should fit in well with our identity.”

2019-20 commits

Finlay Wiliams (2003, F)

  • Hometown: North Vancouver, B.C.
  • Previous team: Burnaby Winter Club Prep (CSSHL)
  • Commitment: University of Michigan (2021-22)

Williams had 42 points in 32 games for Burnaby Winter Club last year. He also featured prominently down the stretch for the Spruce Kings as an affiliate, scoring once in eight BCHL playoff games. He played all six Doyle Cup games and another six at the National Junior A Championship.

Evin’s scouting report:

“Fin was a big part of our championship success last year as an affiliate. He is a special player and we are very lucky as an organization to be part of his development. I can see Fin becoming an instant fan favourite.”

Nolan Barrett (2000, D)

  • Hometown: Glen Ridge, N.J.
  • Previous team: Skipjacks Hockey Club 18U (USPHL 18U)
  • Commitment: Merrimack College (2020-21)

The 19-year-old had 23 points in 25 games last year to lead his team in scoring from the blueline.

Evin’s scouting report:

“He’s got a high-offensive IQ. I think he’s going to fit the style of our league and the style of our play pretty well. There’s a lot of misconceptions about how Prince George plays sometimes. I think Nolan will fit in with our very active offensive game just nicely.”

Henry Wagner (2001, F)

  • Hometown: St. Louis, Mo.
  • Previous team: St. Louis University High (USHS-MO)
  • Commitment: Yale University (2020-21)

Wagner averaged over two points a game with his prep school last year, putting up 21 points in 10 games. He also had 30 points in 27 games for his major midget team.

Evin’s scouting report:

“Henry is a really good person who comes from a great family. He’s fast and he’s got leadership qualities. He’s an intelligent person and hockey player and he’s going to play a big part in our offence next year.”

Andrew Seaman (2000, F)

  • Hometown: Winnetka, Ill.
  • Previous team: Phillips Exeter Academy (USHS-Prep)
  • Commitment: Union College (2020-21)

Seaman spent the last two seasons at Exeter Academy, most recently tallying 16 goals and adding 11 assists for 27 points in 32 games last year.

Evin’s scouting report:

“Andrew has a high offensive IQ. He’s really dedicated himself last year and this year, rounding out his game on and off the ice. He should be someone that plays a role for us going forward and he’s someone that can chip in offensively with his skill.”

Brendan Hill (2001, D)

  • Hometown: South Lyon, Mich.
  • Previous team: Detroit Catholic Central (USHS-MI)
  • Commitment: Lake Superior State University (2020-21)

Hill had 15 points in 25 games at prep school last season in Detroit.

Evin’s scouting report:

“He’s a great skater and a great kid. He’s an extremely hard worker and he’s dedicated to the game. We’re excited for Brendan to come in and help re-tool our defence. We lost a lot of guys to scholarships, but that’s what our program is all about.”

Tom Richter (2000, F)

  • Hometown: Greenwich, Conn.
  • Previous team: Salisbury School (USHS-Prep)
  • Commitment: Union College (2020-21)

Richter, the son of Stanley Cup champion goalie Mike Richter, dealt with some injuries last year, but managed to total two goals and four assists in 15 games at Salisbury last season.

Evin’s scouting report:

“He plays with a lot of energy and a lot of heart and he competes extremely hard. Again, he’s someone that’s going to fit in with what we’ve been doing in Prince George. He’s a great character kid. I think he’s really excited to show what he can do.”

Ryan McAllister (2001, F)

  • Hometown: London, Ont.
  • Previous team: Komoka Kings (GOJHL)
  • Commitment: Western Michigan University (2020-21)

The 17-year-old split time between Komoka and the London Nationals in Ontario’s Junior B circuit last season. He had a combined 37 points in 47 games and put up eight points in 12 playoff contests.

Evin’s scouting report:

“Ryan is a very skilled and shifty player. I think he can really surprise a lot of people. He’s got all the tools to become an elite player in our league. We’re really excited to work with him next year.”

Colton Cameron (2002, D)

  • Hometown: Surrey, B.C.
  • Previous team: Valley West Giants (BCMML)

Cameron had 20 points in 38 games to tie for the team lead in points by a defenceman for his major midget team last year. He also played in a pair of games for the Langley Rivermen as an affiliate.

Carter Cochrane (2002, F)

  • Hometown: Victoria, B.C.
  • Previous team: Burnaby Winter Club Prep (CSSHL)

The 17-year-old scored 10 goals and added 16 assists for Burnaby Winter Club last year. He also registered one assist in four BCHL games as an affiliate for the Spruce Kings.

Cole Leal (2001, D)

  • Hometown: Belleville, Ont.
  • Previous team: Northwood School Junior (USHS-Prep)

The Ontario native moved to New York to play for Northwood where he had 22 points in 68 games.

Jack McGovern (2001, G)

  • Hometown: Waterdown, Ont.
  • Previous team: St. Catharines Falcons (GOJHL)

McGovern had outstanding numbers last year playing Junior B in Ontario, posting a .925 save percentage and a 1.90 goals-against average in 23 games.

Jake McLean (2002, F)

  • Hometown: North Vancouver, B.C.
  • Previous team: Vancouver NW Hawks (BCMML)

McLean was the second-leading scorer on his major midget team last year with 19 goals and 29 assists for 48 points in 40 games. He played one game for the Spruce Kings as an affiliate last year.

Brett Pfoh (2002, F)

  • Hometown: Port Moody, B.C.
  • Previous team: Burnaby Winter Club Prep (CSSHL)

The 17-year-old had 37 points in 34 games for Burnaby Winter Club last year and also played in a pair of BCHL games as an affiliate for the Merritt Centennials.

Mack Stewart (2001, F)

  • Hometown: Villach, Austria
  • Previous team: Calgary Royals Midget AAA (AMHL)

Stewart’s father Michael was a first-round draft pick of the New York Rangers in 1990 and Mack was born in Austria while is dad was playing for Villacher SV of the EBEL. A dual citizen, Mack moved to Calgary to play hockey last year and put up 31 points in 31 games for his midget team. He also played in five games for the Okotoks Oilers of the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) as an affiliate, registering a goal and an assist.

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