James Doyle

A guide to the Prince George Cougars 2019 training camp

With a very young and hungry pool of prospects set to take the ice on Friday August 23, this years edition of the Prince George Cougars training camp should be extremely competitive.

The current state of the prospect pool is similar to that of a country concert in Prince George or a highway during rush hour traffic.

Even being a listed prospect right now for the team could be considered an honour compared to past years.

The cupboards are stocked once again and now it’s time to crack open some of those products for use.

That’s where this article comes in handy.

This season features a similar training camp format to last season, more practice times than past years and less games than past camps which were under different management.

For a evaluation point of view, it gives a better look towards the character of players and how bad they want a chance towards a roster spot on the team in the coming season or a call-up if they fall into the underage category.

Now here’s a guide of some of the players expected to attend camp and players expected to be in the mix for some exhibition games and perhaps a spot on the Cougars everyday roster for 2019-20.

Who to watch (A-Z):

Training camp could be just what the doctor ordered for slick and speedy Craig Armstrong who could be the next scoring forward for the Cougars. (Photo: Hockey Alberta)

Craig Armstrong, one of the organization’s most coveted prospects who had some quality appearances last season in a short stint with the team. He also played with Team Alberta at the Canada Winter Games and picked up six points in seven games playing with and against the best of his age group in the country.

Last season with Edge School Prep (CSSHL)

29 GP 12G 16A 28P 44PIM | Playoffs 3GP 2G 1A 3P 16PIM

 

Tyler Brennan suited up in one regular season game for the Cougars back in 2018-19 (Photo: Allen Douglas)

Tyler Brennan, arguably the top goaltending prospect in the system and the one with the best chance at earning a goaltending spot on the team backing up Taylor Gauthier. Brennan was picked by the Cougars 21st overall in the 2018 Bantam Draft. The second highest goaltender to be chosen by the franchise, only Taylor Gauthier was drafted higher at 5th overall.

Last season with Rink Hockey Academy Prep (CSSHL)

19 GP 2.69 GAA .909 SV% | Playoffs 1 GP 6.00 GAA .760 SV%

 

One of the biggest storylines to watch coming into this Cougars season will be Ilijah Colina (Photo: James Doyle)

Illijah Colina, is set to make a comeback to the Cougars roster this season after taking a break from hockey last season to deal with his own mental health. The now 19-year-old forward from Delta, BC looks to make a statement out of the gate as one of the big fish up front. You can read the full essay headlined “Mental Health is OKAY” here.

Last season with Prince George Cougars (WHL)

39 GP 6G 6A 12P 2PIM

 

Isaiah DiLaura prepares to take the puck head on. Feb 18, 2019 (Photo: James Doyle)

Isaiah DiLaura, shared duties with Taylor Gauthier in the crease last season. Younger talent in the prospect pool could prove to be the enemy for the 19-year-old goaltender. Watch for a steady DiLaura to win over management with standout performances.

Last season with Prince George (WHL)

22 GP 3.40 GAA .890 SV%

 

Keaton Dowhaniuk playing for OHA Edmonton during his WHL Draft Eligible 2018-19 season.

Keaton Dowhaniuk, the Cougars highest pick in the most recent WHL bantam draft could be a real eye opener for fans if he continues to showcase what he offered his team during the CSSBHL regular season. A big strong defenseman who covers both ends of the ice extremely well.

Last season with OHA Edmonton Bantam Prep (CSSBHL)

25 GP 8G 27A 35P 34PIM | Playoffs 4 GP 1G 3A 4P 8PIM

 

Jordan Edwards played a standout season in 2018-19 earning him a spot on the protected list of the Cougars in the spring of 2019. (Photo: Steve Hiscock)

Jordan Edwards Just recently added to the Cougars protected list, this defenseman could prove to be a surprise come training camp. The 2002-born blue liner has a big body that can move the puck, listed with a 6-foot-3 frame.

Last season with Saskatoon Blazers (SMHL)

44 GP 3G 22A 25P 36PIM | Playoffs 12 GP 0G 2A 2P 12PIM

 

One of the biggest surprises for Cougars fans this summer was signing this Saskatchewan product. (Photo: pgcougars.com)

Kyren Gronick, has been repeatedly called one of the biggest risers in his bantam draft class of 2019. Gronick was expected to go the NCAA route although with a WHL contract signed it seems his plans have changed.

Last season with Regina Aces Bantam AA (SBAAHL)

24 GP 27G 26A 53P 49PIM | Playoffs 7 GP 5G 7A 12P 0PIM

 

Phillip Koffer was a 10th overall selection in the 2019 CHL Import Draft (Photo: HC Dynamo Photography)

Philip Koffer, the Cougars most recent import draft selection who boasts a lot of exciting pieces to offer the team. Standing in at five-foot-10 and weighing in at 165 pounds, he’s no stranger to Cougars forward Matej Toman who is a former teammate and friend.

Last season with HC Dynamo Pardubice U19 (Czech U19)

34 GP 10G 28A 38P 34PIM

 

Reid Perepeluk tries to burn past a Broncos player with his foot speed. Something that sets him apart from the rest of the Cougars team. (Photo: James Doyle)

Reid Perepeluk, one of the biggest and scariest Prince George Cougars you’ll see cruising down the ice at CN Centre. One of the best skaters in the BC Division will be looking to make an impact in the stats column this season as he looks to transform into a key piece for the Cougars.

Last season with Prince George Cougars (WHL)

55 GP 2G 5A 7P 58PIM

 

A player who shined during the CSSHL Showcase in Penticton, Samson looks to impress Cougars scouts once again as he takes the ice for training camp (Photo: pgcougars.com)

Ethan Samson, a big bodied two-way defenseman with potential to be an everyday player when the time comes. A current day comparable would be Cole Moberg. He was a third round selection in the 2018 bantam draft.

Last season with Delta Hockey Academy Elite 15s (CSSHL)

33 GP 7G 17A 24P 58PIM | Playoffs 4 GP 2G 2A 4P 12PIM

 

 

Gabe Schovanek was added to the Cougars protected list late in the 2018-19 campaign. (Photo: Pacific Sea Devils/ CSSHL)

 

Gabe Schovanek is a big point producer who had a monster season in the CSSHL Midget Prep division. Schovanek went undrafted in the Bantam Draft but still has plenty to be excited about. Don’t be surprised to see this 18-year-old land some preseason playing time with a good training camp. Schovanek is committed to the Surrey Eagles for 2019-20.

Last season with Pacific Coast Academy Prep (CSSHL)

36 GP 23G 52A 75P 28PIM

 

Hudson Thornton is committed to the Chilliwack Chiefs for the 2019-20 season (Photo: RINK Academy)

Hudson Thornton, a second round (33rd overall) selection of the 2018 WHL Bantam Draft and is one of the management’s highest rated prospects. He posted 47 points in 31 games playing at the CSSHL level with Rink Academy this season.

Last season Rink Hockey Academy Prep (CSSHL)

31 GP 17G 30A 47P 14PIM | Playoffs 3 GP 1G 3A 4P 4PIM

 

Koehn Ziememr, OHA Edmonton (Photo: The Scouting News)

Koehn Ziemmer, has great potential and wants to play in Prince George, something that was instrumental to being selected. Expect a lot of jump and offensive upside while remaining physical and not being scared to go into the dirty areas to get the puck.

Last season with OHA Edmonton Bantam Prep (CSSBHL)

29 GP 37G 39A 76P 16PIM | Playoffs 4 GP 5G 1A 6P 4PIM

 

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