The Power Dodge Estevan Bruins will have plenty of star power on display during the 2019 SJHL/MJHL Showcase in Regina.
Eight members of the black-and-gold will suit up for the event happening January 14th and 15th at the Cooperators Centre. Each league has created three teams (Team Schwartz, Team Kunitz, Team Mitchell) that will play two games each in a showcase featuring some of the top players competing on teams in Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
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TEAM SCHWARTZ (players born in 2000 or 2001)
#1 – Grant Boldt (23 GP, 10-10-1-1, 2.68 GAA, .907 Sv%)
The rookie goaltender from Detroit Lakes, Minnesota has had a standout campaign for the Bruins in taking over the starting role since October. Boldt has one shutout on the season and, aside from two early season losses at home to the Humboldt Broncos, has had top 5 numbers in goals-against-average (GAA) and save percentage (Sv%) in the SJHL.
#11 – Kade McMillen (32 GP, 2G-6A-8PTS, 6 PIM)
The hulking 18-year-old defenceman from Carievale, Saskatchewan has stepped in and made an immediate impact at the SJHL level in his first full season with the Bruins. Aside from missing 8 games in October due to injury, McMillen has suited up for every game and played big minutes against the oppositions top scorers while also seeing time on the powerplay and penalty kill.
#27 – Isaiah Thomas (40 GP, 6G-12A-18PTS, 10 PIM)
The shifty, talented 18-year-old forward from Bismarck, North Dakota has been a dependable offensive player for the Bruins in his rookie season. Thomas’ vision, speed and skill are among the best on the team and he has also developed into a reliable, trustworthy forward in his own end of the rink as the season goes along. Thomas also scored the coveted ‘Teddy Bear Toss’ goal for the Bruins on November 22nd.
TEAM KUNITZ (players born in 1998 or 1999)
#3 – Johnny Witzke (40GP, 10G-15A-25PTS, 27 PIM)
The 20-year-old smooth-skating defenceman for the Bruins has continued to develop into one of the top blueliners in the SJHL, now in his third and final season. Witzke (Bismarck, ND) leads all SJHL-defenceman with 10 goals this season and is one of three Bruins to play in every game so far in 2018/19 (Thomas, Aigne McGeady-Bruce).
#8 – Jake Heerspink (38GP, 9G-20A-29PTS, 91 PIM)
Heerspink has enjoyed his best season with the Bruins in his 20-year-old campaign, in which he was named as the team’s captain at the beginning of the year. Heerspink (Regina, SK) is currently third among SJHL defenceman in scoring and his tenacity, toughness and shutdown ability combined with a powerful shot has made him one of the top two-way defenders in the league.
#17 – Turner Ripplinger (39GP, 19G-20A-39PTS, 131 PIM)
In his first season with the Bruins after joining the club in an offseason trade from the Portage Terriers, Ripplinger has been at or near the top of all statistical categories throughout the season. Ripplinger (Regina, SK) has already set a career-high in goals and is on pace to do the same in points and penalty minutes as well. The 20-year-old’s combination of toughness, skill and relentless drive has made Ripplinger a go-to leader for the Bruins in his final year of junior hockey.
#21 – Michael McChesney (36GP, 18G-18A-36PTS, 33 PIM)
McChesney is one of three Bruins (Witzke, Heerspink) suiting up for the SJHL at the SJ/MJ Showcase again after putting on a show at the 2018 event and being named as one of the top forwards. McChesney (Dickinson, ND) has picked up where he left off in his 20-year-old season with the Bruins as the third-year forward is one of the top offensive players for the club. As well, McChesney has played the majority of 2018/19 at the center position after playing the wing almost exclusively the previous two seasons. His effortless skating, lightning-quick release, elite vision and 200-foot game makes him one of the most valuable forwards in the SJHL.
TEAM MITCHELL (players born in 1998 or 1999)
#16 – Will Koop (8GP, 3G,6A,9PTS, 2 PIM)
Though he hasn’t played many games so far in his first season with the Bruins, Koop is regarded as arguably the top offensive player for the club in his final season of junior hockey. Koop (Winnipeg, MB) joined the Bruins after a late-October trade from the Steinbach Pistons where he won a league championship in 2017/18 and was more than a point-per-game player over his two season in Steinbach. Koop recently returned to the Bruins lineup after missing more than two months with an injury, and will also be returning to the SJ/MJ Showcase after playing last season on the MJHL side. Koop’s hockey IQ, vision, speed, skill and winning pedigree will make place him at or near the top off all players participating in the 2019 showcase in Regina.
As well, Bruins Head Coach/GM Chris Lewgood will serve as the Head Coach for Team Schwartz at the event. Lewgood was a Head Coach at the inaugural SJ/MJ Showcase in 2018.
Monday January 14, 2019
11:00am – 1:30pm – Team Garbutt (MJHL) vs Team Schwartz (SJHL)
2:00pm – 4:30pm – Team Zajac (MJHL) vs Team Mitchell (SJHL)
5:00pm – 7:30pm – Team Belfour (MJHL) vs Team Kunitz (SJHL)
Tuesday January 15, 2019
10:00am – 12:30pm – Team Schwartz (SJHL) VS Team Garbutt (MJHL)
1:00pm – 3:30pm – Team Mitchell (SJHL) VS Team Belfour (MJHL)
4:00pm – 6:30pm – Team Kunitz (SJHL) VS Team Zajac (MJHL)
(Top to Bottom, Left To Right) Turner Ripplinger, Kade McMillen, Grant Boldt, Will Koop, Johnny Witzke, Isaiah Thomas, Michael McChesney, Jake Heerspink.