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Cranbrook Bucks sign seven new players before BCHL season opener

The Cranbrook Bucks are bolstering their roster before heading off to Penticton for the start of their inaugural BCHL season this weekend.

“We are happy to welcome these young men to our program for the remainder of the season,” said Ryan Donald, Head Coach and General Manager Ryan Donald. “These players will be expected to step into our lineup and contribute in a variety of roles and situations during our condensed season. We look forward to working with each and every one of them to develop as hockey players and as young men, while giving the City of Cranbrook a team to proudly support this spring.”

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The Bucks are adding Jay Thomson to their goaltending tandem. The 19-year-old from Canmore, AB has Junior A experience, previously playing for the Calgary Canucks and the Olds Grizzlies in the AJHL (Alberta Junior Hockey League).

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On the blue line, the Bucks added 19-year old Nick Dobson from Cochrane, AB and affiliated Bryce Margetson, another 19-year-old from Surrey, BC.

Dobson played for the Weyburn Red Wings in the SJHL (Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League) last season as well as a short stint with the Waywayseecappo Wolverines in the MJHL (Manitoba Junior Hockey League) and a single game with the KIJHL’s Creston Valley Thunder Cats this season.

Margetson played 41 games with the White Rock Whalers in the PJHL (Pacific Junior Hockey League) and was affiliated for five BCHL games with the Merritt Centennials last season.

Up front, Cranbrook has added two full-time forwards and affiliated two more.

20-year-old Reece Henry from Regina, SK is joining the Bucks after spending his entire junior career in the MJHL with the Portage Terriers. Henry was named to the MJHL All-Rookie team in 2018/19 and made an appearance in the Royal Bank Cup. After the MJHL cancelled its season, Henry signed with the Bucks.

Bryce Krauter is the other full-time forward being added by the Bucks. The 20-year-old from Winnipeg, MB split time last season in the MJHL and SJHL, playing for the Winkler Flyers and Red Lake Miners. Krauter also played 9 games with the Neepawa Natives in the MJHL this season before the league called it quits for the year. The veteran is committed to Salve Regina University for the 2021/22 NCAA Division III season.

Two other affiliate forwards were signed by the Cranbrook Bucks, including a familiar face from the KIJHL.

Nik Sombrowski, a 20-year-old from Fernie, BC is coming back to the Kootenays after spending last season in the SJHL with the Weyburn Red Wings. Sombrowski played for the KIJHL’s Fernie Ghostriders the year prior and was on their roster this season before the league closed the season.

Walker Gelbard is the last affiliate forward signed by the team, the 16-year-old had 36 points (10 goals, 26 assists) in 24 games with the CSSHL’s West Vancouver Academy U15 team last year and was on the Vancouver NW Hawks U18 AAA team this season and is committed to join the Cranbrook Bucks next season. He will join the team early as an affiliate.

“While this season has presented everyone with many unique and unforeseen challenges, we are very fortunate to be able to return to play in the coming weeks,” said Donald.

The full roster for the Cranbrook Bucks can be found below:

Cranbrook Bucks 2020/21 BCHL Roster

The Cranbrook Bucks open their shortened 20-game season against the Penticton Vees on Saturday, April 3rd in what will be their inaugural regular season game as a franchise.

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