The Swan Valley Stampeders had a chance to take a little bit of a breath on Saturday as they hosted their annual golf tournament at the Swan River Golf and Country Club.

Before the tournament, this year's preseason was a very busy one for the club as they played six games in seven days with their final four games coming in as many days. After dropping to 1-3 following a 6-2 loss against OCN on September 8, the team finished their preseason with two straight wins to end at 3-3.

In their final tuneup game against Waywayseecappo, Swan River's Jamie Valentino scored once in a 4-1 win. The Stampeders averaged three goals per game while they gave up 20 across the six contests. 

Barry Wolff returns as head coach and general manager this season and he says playing six games was a positive for the team as it allowed the rookies to get plenty of ice time while allowing the club's returning players a chance to get a good amount of reps in after last year's shortened season.

"We got what we wanted out of it. It also allowed us to put players in different situations," said Wolff. "We also had a chance to identity for the future which is always a positive."

The Stampeders kick off their 2021-22 season on Friday night as they welcome the OCN Blizzard to the Centennial Arena. This year's roster has been trimmed down to 24 with a few days until puck drop, which includes Dylan Black who was on last year's team while Carter Cockburn looks to enjoy his biggest season as a Stampeder yet playing for his home team.

Jackson Betcher and Trey Sauder, both of Swan River also saw extensive action in the preseason. Sauder is looking to make the team after playing with the Parkland U18 Rangers last season while Betcher will be one of the team's top defenders.

A question for the organization is where will Steven Arp end up. He started his season by putting up eight points in the U18 Rangers intrasquad game and he scored twice in three preseason tilts with Swan Valley. Now, the Swan River native is in Medicine Hat as the Tigers of the Western Hockey League open up their training camp.

At this point, there are three options where he could end up this season. One being with the U18 Rangers, the other would see him suit up for his hometown MJHL team, and the other option is staying with the Tigers.

At this point, it's too early to tell where he may end up but wherever it is, Barry Wolff knows big things are on the way for the young man from Swan River.

"There's no question that he has a bright future, he's a big strong kid," ended Wolff. "He can skate and he can shoot. We're excited to see how his career pans out, whether that's with us or in Medicine Hat. We're right behind him and we'll be cheering him on the entire time."

One of the most enjoyable things to do during the summer months for so many Manitobans is heading to Shaw Park to watch the Winnipeg Goldeyes play in the American Association.

The only Canadian team in the league, Shaw Park can welcome nearly 9,000 fans to each one of its home games, which is 50 in a normal 100 game regular season. In 2020, the Goldeyes weren't able to play in Manitoba because of COVID-19 restrictions so they looked elsewhere as they set up shop in Fargo for the entire shortened season.

This season, the Goldeyes were once again unable to start their season in Winnipeg so they played their home games in Jackson, Tennessee. And while Winnipeg missed the playoffs this season, it was still a memorable one for a few reasons. First of all, the team was granted approval to return to Winnipeg as they played their final 20 home games of the season at Shaw Park. August 3, 2020, was Winnipeg's first home game since back on September 2 of 2019. 

Steve Schuster is the Voice of the Goldeyes and after spending nearly two seasons on the road, he says returning home was a long time coming.

"To be able to do that for a month was extremely special," said Schuster. "I was really happy for the fans that had been waiting so long to watch Goldeyes baseball. And also players that have been with us for nearly two years, but they hadn't had the chance to feel the electricity of Shaw Park." 

Steve joined the Goldeyes in 2014 after spending the previous five years with the Wichita Wingnuts who are also a member of the American Association. He also interned with the Lincoln Saltdogs in 2007. 

Taking over for Paul Edmonds who is now the Voice of the Winnipeg Jets, Schuster has fallen in love with Winnipeg and he says making the decision to join the team was one of the best that he's ever made.

In a season where Kyle Martin led the league with 106 runs-batted-in which is the most in a single season in AA history, Schuster also entered the history books. When the Goldeyes played the Chicago Dogs on August 31, Schuster was behind the mic for his 1,382nd game. That total is the most in American Association history.

"Just really appreciative of everyone that has tuned in over the years," ended Schuster. "I try to do my best broadcast each night and my goal is to leave everything out there. I'm looking forward to continuing to do what I love for many years to come."

The Home Hardware Two-Man Classic in support of the Gary Brandon Sports Bursary is back at the Dauphin Lake Golf Club this year.

After postponing the event earlier this summer, Ray Karlson has confirmed the event will be played next weekend! If you're looking to play, you can also call the course to reserve a spot. 

It's $250 per team and that includes four rounds, multiple meals, and a chance at some prizes. 

"The prizes are all cash prizes which is always exciting for golfers," said Karlson. "We also have our Calcutta and that brings a new level of interest for players as well."

Each team plays a qualifying round on Friday and that's followed by the matches which begin on Saturday. The event is open to golfers of all skill levels as after Friday's qualifying match, teams are put into their proper flights. 

 

Trevor Fox and Regan Hedley won the event last summer. 

The 2021 preseason has come to a close for the Dauphin Kings.

Wrapping it up with their third game on Saturday, the Waywayseecappo Wolverines won a thriller in a shootout, 4-3.

Carson Baptiste scored the only goal of the first as the Wolverines led 1-0 heading into the second.

Coming back onto the ice for the second, Dauphin carried the play early and they capitalized on their chances.

Lucas Hand scored his first as a King 4:17 into the period and just more than three minutes later, Ben Hackl gave Dauphin a 2-1 lead.

On a man advantage of their own late in the second, Jacob Charko beat Matthias Smith as the game went to the third tied at two.

Braedon Lacomy scored his second goal in as many games early in the period to give Dauphin a 3-2 lead but it didn't last long as Reese Malkewich tied the game with just more than 10 minutes left.

Parker Malchuk scored in the shootout, but the Wolverines responded with two goals of their own to pick up the win.

By the numbers:

  • Dauphin went 1-for-7 on the power play while Waywayseecappo scored once on their four chances.
  • Keaton Woolsey started for Dauphin in net, making 13 saves on 14 shots. Matthias Smith went 11-for-13.
  • Liam Tereposky went 26-for-29 for Waywayseecappo.
  • On top of his first goal as a King, Lucas Hand also had one assist.
  • Ben Hackl scored one goal but left the game later after he took a high stick to the face.

Dauphin opens the new season on Friday night in Neepawa. Darnell Duff has the pregame show at 7:15.

A pair of Blue Bombers quarterbacks led the team to victory in the C-F-L Banjo Bowl on Saturday afternoon.

Starting Q-B Zach Collaros threw two touchdowns and backup Sean McGuire added three rushing T-Ds. Winnipeg beat Saskatchewan 33-9.

Winnipeg is now 5-1 and they have a four point lead atop the West Division.

The club will head to Edmonton for a game next Saturday at 8:45. Darnell Duff will have the call of the Kings game and we will join the Bombers game in progress. 

Fusion Credit Union hosted their golf tournament at the Gilbert Plains Country Club and it was a winning day for Cary Fillion's Twin Motors.

Represented by Cary, Scott, Dawn, and Bob, the foursome won the championship flight. 

The Dauphin Chamber of Commerce and Associates represented by Steve, Stephen, Charlene, and Gabe won the first flight. 

There were also several winners in separate holes.

Longest Drive Men's: Brett Sidoryk 

Longest Drive Ladies: Lindsey Kyle 

Closest to the Pin Men's: Brett Sidoryk

Closest to the Pin Ladies: Leanne Rowat 

Closest to the Line: Shannon Johnston 

Ball in the Sand Trap: Joey Pasternak 

Ball in the Water: Lyle Paziuk 

Kyan Grouette moved to Winnipeg this past summer to train at Rink Hockey Academy and that training included a few hours on-ice every day and he was also in the gym and doing dryland.

A seventh-round draft pick by the Everett Silvertips of the Western Hockey League in the 2020 WHL Draft, Kyan knew that if he wanted to have the chance to stay in Everett this year, making the move to Winnipeg was necessary and it looks like that work has paid off.

The Dauphin Kings prospect from Dauphin has signed a standard player agreement with the Silvertips ahead of the 2021-22 season. By signing the contract, Grouette is now guaranteed a WHL Scholarship for one year and he earns an additional year of free schooling for every year that he plays in the WHL.

"It's an amazing feeling, it's something I've been working really hard for since I was drafted," said Grouette. "Everett is a great organization and I'm really happy that I was able to put pen to paper."

One day after signing, Grouette will get his first taste of preseason WHL action as he suits up in Friday night's game against the Spokane Cheifs. Everett will also play on Saturday against Tri-City and on Sunday, Grouette battles Ryder Thompson and the Portland Winterhawks. In seven games last year with the Parkland U18 Rangers, Grouette notched two assists for a team that was 6-1 and on top of the league when the season ended in November.

"Really looking forward to putting on the Silvertips jersey for the first time and getting some ice-time," said Grouette. "It's all about proving myself and doing whatever I can to help the team win. It's going to be a special night."

Kyan also believes that this is just the beginning. The young man from Dauphin knows becoming an everyday impact player in the WHL is not an easy task but it's one that he's looking forward to working towards.

"I'm on the ice with these guys every day and in the gym, I have to battle for every inch here," ended Grouette. "Nothing is going to be handed to me, I have to earn every single minute."

Fun fact:

Grouette certainly isn't the first Parkland Ranger to sign with the Everett Silvertips. Connor Dewar played four full seasons with Everett from 2015 to 2019 after he was drafted in the fifth round in the 2014 WHL draft. He was named to the WHL Western Conference's first all-star team in the 2018-19 season, one that he produced 81 points in just 59 regular-season games and he added another 10 points in nine playoff games.

Dewar has played the past two seasons with the Iowa Wild of the American Hockey League, last year he scored 12 times in 32 games and added 11 assists. Dewar is set to return to Iowa this season. 

In a back and forth affair on Thursday night, the Swan Valley Stampeders picked up their second preseason victory with a 5-4 win over Dauphin.

Brad Fortin and Keefe Gruener scored a goal each in the first 2:44 of the game as Swan Valley took a 2-0 lead early.

Dauphin bounced back nicely late in the second as Carter Zalischuk scored his first goal at the 14:23 mark. Then just 38 seconds later, 20-year-old Kaden Bryant tied the game up.

But just as Dauphin responded, the Stampeders took over for the final four minutes of the period. Darius Makse scored his first of the preseason at 15:58 and less than two minutes later, Steven Arp of Swan River gave his hometown team a 4-2 lead, one they held heading into the second.

Braedon Lacomy scored a second-period goal for Dauphin to bring the Kings within one but Brad Fortin restored the Stampeders two-goal lead late in the second as Swan took a 5-3 lead into the third.

Owen Wareham would bring Dauphin within a goal as he scored his first of the preseason just 27 seconds into the third, but it proved to be not enough as the Stampeders shut the door the rest of the way to earn a 5-4 win.

Early in the game, Hayden Lacquette of Dauphin dropped the gloves with Jamie Valentino of Swan River.

Dauphin (1-1) will finish their preseason on Saturday night with a game against Waywayseecappo.

For the second time in 48 hours, the Dauphin Kings and Swan Valley Stampeders will meet in a preseason game. This time, the game will take place at the Centennial Arena in Swan River after the Kings downed their Parkland rival on Tuesday night.

Tuesday's game was Dauphin's only preseason affair so far as they enter Thursday's game with a 1-0 record while the Stampeders have struggled this preseason so far. They're 1-3 after a loss on Wednesday night and they've given up 15 goals while only scoring nine across those four games.

Riley Zimmerman scored twice on Wednesday as he helped OCN dispatch of the Stampeders 6-2. Thursday's game is the second last tuneup for both teams as Dauphin will play three preseason games in all while the Stampeders who have had a busy preseason schedule will play six.

With that said, both lineups are expected to be much more experienced than they were on Tuesday night in the annual rookie game. 

Dating back to the 2016-17 preseason, Dauphin is 6-3 against Swan Valley. In each of these years, Dauphin won their first preseason matchup with the Stampeders, outscoring them 20-8 while going 5-0. In the second game of a home-and-home preseason series, the Kings have gone 1-3, while being outscored 13-12.

Following Thursday's game, Dauphin is in Waywayseecappo on Saturday. The team's regular-season opens next Friday at 7:30 in Neepawa. 

Many of the top curlers from around the province will make their way to Dauphin late next month.

The newly formed Cargill Curling Training Centre Manitoba Mixed Doubles Curling Tour presented by Asham Curling Supplies is ready to hit the ice sliding in the 2021-22 season and the Dauphin Curling Club will play host to an event from October 22-24. 

The newly created tour currently has four stops planned, the first of which is in Morris from September 24-26. Following the stop in Dauphin, the Brandon Curling Club will host an event from December 11-12 and the tour's Tour Championship will be played in Morris from March 25-27. 

Organizers with the tour say the goal is to add at least two more events this season, one of which they hope will be in the Interlake while they are currently seeking out clubs in Winnipeg that may be interested in hosting an event. 

The idea for a Manitoba Tour grew from the excitement generated when three Manitobans (Kerri Einarson, Kadriana Sahaidak, and Colton Lott) reached the final of the 2021 Canadian Mixed Doubles Championship.

Steve Michaleski, whose dad is local MLA Brad Michaleski says it's a very exciting time and he can't wait for event number one.

"It's amazing to get started. I think now that the COVID rules have eased a little bit, there's a lot of pent-up excitement to do things again," said Michaleski. "We're looking forward to hosting some of the top curlers not only in Manitoba but hopefully, from around Canada as well."

Steve plays in multiple bonspiels in Dauphin every winter, including the men's event and the farmer's. He says when deciding on tour stops, Dauphin was a no-brainer.

"Dauphin has a tremendous facility and they have the capacity to put up a lot of teams," ended Michaleski. "There is also a lot of curling talent that comes out of Dauphin so it gives players in the community a great opportunity to show what they can do against some of the best."

If you're interested in playing in Dauphin's stop, call Steve at 204-803-1288. It's open to players of all ages but do keep in mind, each team must be made up of one male and one female. 

Main camps have come to a close as the exhibition season is underway for all teams across the Manitoba Junior Hockey League as each team has played at least one game, with the Waywayseecappo Wolverines picking up two wins in as many games.

In the Parkland, the Swan Valley Stampeders have played three games so far, winning one of them while the Dauphin Kings won their only game of the preseason so far, on Tuesday night against the Stampeders. In the first game of a home-and-home, Luke Morris scored the game-winner in a 3-1 victory for the home team. And while the main story was Dauphin getting the win, a story within the story was a strong presence of Parkland players that suited up in the game.

For the Kings, Rylan Gibbs, Madden Murray, Marco Bodnarski, and Cole Delamare made up the four hometown skaters on the roster. Jayden Jubenvill of Gilbert Plains also played while Skylar Carriere of Roblin also played in the game.

On the other side, the Stampeders had three hometown boys on the team, as Steven Arp was joined by Trey Sauder and Matthew Munro. Jackson Badowski, Andrew Pidskalny, and Cash Clarkson also cracked the lineup for the annual rookie game. 

Tyler Carefoot is the head coach for the Parkland U18 Rangers and he was front and centre watching Tuesday's game, one that featured 12 players that are eligible to play for the Rangers this season. Carefoot says it was tremendous seeing so much local talent playing in a junior hockey game.

"That's a testament to the program, it just proves that we can develop players within the Parkland region," said Carefoot. "I was very pleased with the numbers that we had on both teams. The young guys put on a great show for everyone."

Rylan Gibbs had two assists for Dauphin in the game while Cash Clarkson scored the Stampeders' lone goal in the game. Swan Valley continues their preseason against the OCN Blizzard on Wednesday night. Dauphin; meanwhile, heads to Swan River to play the Stampeders on Thursday. 

When it comes to the Rangers, they are back on the ice this Thursday for their first practice since training camp late last month. Carefoot says there are still many unknowns as several players are at or are heading to WHL camps across the country and south of the border.

The team will also practice next Tuesday and Thursday before playing in a tournament in Souris next weekend and it featuresother teams within the Manitoba AAA U18 Hockey League.

That all leads up to the team's season opener on Friday, September 24 against the Yellowhead Chiefs. Parkland's home opener is one day later against Yellowhead. 

"If everyone does come back that's eligible, I think it's safe to say that it will be another exciting season for the Parkland Rangers," ended Carefoot.