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Saturday, February 17, 2018

SUTTER SCORES WINNER FOR TEAM WEST IN CENTENNIAL CLASSIC

Keith Hershmiller Photography
Regina, Saskatchewan – Team West came away with a 12-11 win over Team Sask at the Regina Pats Centennial Salute All-Star Celebrity Classic on Saturday afternoon at the Brandt Centre.

40 former NHL’ers including four Hall of Famers took part in the contest.

Cliff Ronning led Team West with a goal and three assists while Brian Skrudland scored once and had two helpers for Team Sask.

Colby Armstrong was named player of the game for Team West and former Pats goaltender Ed Staniowski took home the honours for Team Sask, making 14 saves in a period of work.

Pats alumni Jamie Heward, Garth Butcher, Dale Derkatch, Mike Sillinger and Jock Callander were all in on the scoring as well.

The Regina Pats will wrap up homecoming weekend on Sunday afternoon against the Moose Jaw Warriors at 2 p.m. at the Brandt Centre.

Scoring Summary

First Period
Team West – Ron Sutter (1) from Rob Niedermayer and Cliff Ronning – 7:46.
Team West – Jarrett Stoll (1) from Eric Brewer and Geoff Coutrnall – 9:20.
Team West – Glen Wesley (1) from Cliff Ronning and Colby Armstrong – 13:30.
Team Sask – Jamie Heward (1) from Brian Skrudland and Wendel Clark – 15:00.

Team West – Darcy Tucker (1) from Glen Wesley and Colby Armstrong – 17:35.
Team Sask – Brian Skrudland (1) from Wendel Clark and Garth Butcher – 19:47.

Second Period
Team West – Rob Niedermayer (1) from Robert Brown and Cliff Ronning – 1:56.
Team West – Robert Brown (1) from Darcy Tucker and Geoff Courtnall – 3:05.
Team West – Jarrett Stoll from Colby Armstrong – 4:37.
Team West – Mike Sillinger (1) from Curtis Leschyshyn – 6:00.
Team Sask – Jamie Heward (2) from Mike Keane and Brian Skrudland – 12:58.
Team West – Robert Brown (1) unassisted – 16:59.
Team West – Jeff Odgers (1) unassisted – 19:45.

Third Period
Team West – Cliff Ronning (1) from Colby Armstrong – 0:25.
Team Sask – Pat Elynuik (1) from Brian Skrudland and Clark Wilm – 7:45.
Team Sask – Allan Kramer (1) from Dale Derkatch and Jock Callander – 10:03.
Team Sask – Kelly Chase (1) from Mike Keane – 12:55.
Team West – Colby Armstong (1) from Scott Niedermayer and Darcy Tucker – 15:26.
Team West – Ron Sutter (2) from Jarrett Stoll – 19:18.

What’s Next?
The Pats will take on the Warriors for a third straight time on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Brandt Centre. Tickets are available at reginapats.com, the Brandt Centre Box office and at any Regina Safeway where FunZone tickets are just $13 plus tax.

(Phil Andrews/ReginaPats.com)

REED PLEASED WITH ALS' FREE AGENT CLASS

MONTREAL - Somehow, general manager Kavis Reed managed to convince some impressive free agents to join the last-place Montreal Alouettes.

Top defensive backs Tommie Campbell, Joe Burnett, Dominique Ellis and Mitchell White signed on this week, but Reed's prize catch was Canadian pass rushing ace Jamaal Westerman, who joins his brother Jabar on the defensive line.

With other moves to strengthen the team's Canadian content and boost the special teams, Reed feels he has addressed most of the pressing needs of a woeful squad that went 3-15 and gave up a league-worst 580 points last season. But he still doesn't know who the starting quarterback will be.

"The good thing about football off-season is you get an opportunity to reset and, in a nine-team league, if you're smart and you're strategic about it, things can happen,'' Reed said Friday. "We're looking forward to continuing to build this thing.

"We're not going to put projections on how many wins we're going have or be in the playoffs, we want to focus on making sure we have a very solid foundation and be a very competitive team and hopefully fortune goes our way.''

It is already a much-changed roster from last season, which was Reed's first after succeeding Jim Popp as GM. Reed also took over as interim coach when Jacques Chapdelaine and defensive co-ordinator Noel Thorpe were fired in September.

The new coach is former Green Bay Packers boss Mike Sherman. Former Calgary defensive backs coach Khalil Carter, who may have had a hand in convincing former Stampeders Campbell and Burnett to sign, is the new defensive co-ordinator, aided by veteran defence guru Rich Stubler as his "special adviser.''

Management plus the coaching and scouting staff spent two weeks together plotting their strategy ahead of the opening of CFL free agency on Tuesday. Reed said they landed many of their targets and are still shopping for more.

It was surprising to see coveted free agents like Westerman sign with a team that looked to be in disarray at the end of last season. But Reed denied reports that he had to pay well over market value for some free agents.

"We did not overpay for any of our players,'' he said. "Our players all have market value.

"The contracts will bear that out when people start to get them. The reasons that those comments may have been made - obviously there was some miscommunication. But we aren't in the business of overpaying and we won't do that and we haven't done that.''

Reed said he has also brought the average age of the club down by a full year to 27.5 years despite signing veterans. Burnett is 31, Campbell is 30. Before free agency, he dealt fullback J. C. Beaulieu to Ottawa for 30-year-old Patrick Lavoie. Defensive lineman Gabriel Knapton went to British Columbia for 30-year-old receiver Chris Williams. And he brought back sacks leader John Bowman, 35.

It didn't go so well for popular linebacker Kyries Hebert, 37, the 2017 eastern nominee for the outstanding defensive player award. He was scheduled to take part in a team school visit to encourage kids to finish their education on Thursday but never showed.

A day later, Reed explained why: Hebert asked to be released because he was slated for an unspecified different role under Carter and Stubler. He was immediately snapped up by Ottawa.

Decisions are pending on whether linebacker Chip Cox, 34, or slotback Nik Lewis, 37, will return.

"We'll very soon start to have discussions with these guys as the roster moves forward,'' said Reed.

As has been the case since Anthony Calvillo retired after the 2013 campaign, quarterback is the biggest question mark.

Darian Durant is gone, but last year's backups Drew Willy, Matt Shiltz and Antonio Pipkin remain. They also signed former NFL pivot Josh Freeman. Reed said the starting job is wide open heading into training camp.

"For all players on the roster, there are no starters right now, literally and figuratively,'' he said. "We realize with a new coaching staff, everyone is auditioning for a job.''

He confirmed that former CFL lineman Miles Gorrell has joined the club as director of national personnel.

(Canadian Press)

BOMBERS TO PURSUE MUAMBA

WINNIPEG - Kyle Walters is going to take a shot at bringing Henoc Muamba back to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

The general manager met with the media to talk about the team's moves since CFL free agency began on Tuesday, but questions quickly turned to Muamba's release by the Saskatchewan Roughriders on Wednesday.

Walters said he's let the agent of the veteran Canadian linebacker know Winnipeg is interested.

"He's a Canadian starter, a quality Canadian starter, which in our league is at a premium,'' Walters said.

"Everybody right now will kind of take a look at their roster and their ratio and say, 'Can we or can we not fit Henoc in? What's the price point? How does it fit with the ratio?' ''

Muamba, 28, has been in and out of the league since Winnipeg drafted him first overall in 2011.

He played three seasons with the Bombers before the pending free agent was released early in 2014 to pursue the NFL. He signed with the Indianapolis Colts, but got let go and joined the Montreal Alouettes in September 2015.

After playing the remainder of that season with the Als, he was released to try the NFL again in 2016. He signed with Dallas, but was cut and joined Saskatchewan in the fall. He played five games that season and 17 last year, recording 82 tackles, 11 special teams tackles, two interceptions and three forced fumbles.

While the six-foot, 230-pound middle linebacker is now a coveted free agent, the cost for his services is expected to be high.

The Riders released him before he was reportedly due a $35,000 bonus on Feb. 15. His price tag could be around $200,000 per season.

Walters said offers aren't even being taken yet by Muamba and his agent.

"They're not even thinking about that,'' he said. "Other than just saying that Henoc's been released, they're just going to take a deep breath and figure out what their next move is.''

Any deal with Muamba would affect Winnipeg's roster and bank account.

"When you're talking about that kind of price point, and based on what I anticipate based on what he's been earning, I would imagine they're going to want to earn a similar dollar figure,'' Walters said.

"The way we're currently set up, if you're going to want to add a Henoc Muamba, then something's got to give. That's just the reality of it.''

Walters said he believes the team has linebackers who can get the job done at the middle or MAC spot if Muamba doesn't pan out.

"Jovan Santos-Knox for the latter half of the year was a dynamic football player,'' he said. "He played the WILL linebacker spot, he played MAC in college, so he can play either. And Ian Wild, he's back under contract. Ian's played both as well.''

Walters updated where the team is at after the first few days of free agency.

"The three guys we went aggressively hard after, we got,'' he said.

That trio included a pair of Winnipeggers - receiver Nic Demski and backup running back Kienan LaFrance - and American starting defensive back Chandler Fenner.

Prior to free agency, Winnipeg got deals done with quarterback Darian Durant to be a veteran backup to Matt Nichols and all-star receiver Adarius Bowman.

While the Bombers lost players such as defensive lineman Jamaal Westerman, defensive back T.J. Heath and linebacker Sam Hurl, Walters said the roster has improved and young players now have the opportunity to show their development.

That will be needed in the competitive West Division.

"Last year was tough, and everyone's changing and everyone's getting better,'' Walters said.

"Everybody seems strong, and who can win the tight ball games and who can stay out of injury trouble and survive those sort of things I think is going to be the difference.''

(Canadian Press)

COORS LIGHT RECAP: PATS UPSET WARRIORS 5-3

Keith Hershmiller Photography
MOOSE JAW – Josh Mahura scored twice as part of a three point third period to lead the Pats past the Moose Jaw Warriors 5-3 on Friday night.

The Warriors picked up the lone goal of the first when Jayden Halbgewachs found a loose puck in front and Moose Jaw led 1-0 after one.

In the second, the Pats powerplay tied it up as Nick Henry jammed home his 10th. Jesse Gabrielle then gave the Pats the lead with his 10th on a good wrist shot from the slot and it was 2-1. Moose Jaw found a tying goal with five seconds left in the period and it was 2-2 heading to the final period.

In the third, the Pats powerplay struck again when Emil Oksanen picked up his 14th to make it 3-2.

Then Josh Mahura would strike twice, his 20th and 21st goals of the year to extend the Pats lead to 5-2.

Moose Jaw got one back on the powerplay with eight seconds left but Regina skated away with the 5-3 victory.

Josh Mahura led the offence with two goals and an assist, Sam Steel picked up two helpers while Max Paddock made 25 saves.

The Pats outshot Moose Jaw 36-28, the powerplay was two for four and the penalty kill was one for three.

Quick Hits
- Josh Mahura had two goals and an assist Friday and has scored five goals and seven assists against Moose Jaw this season.
- The victory was the first for the Pats against the Warriors this season.
- Koby Morrisseau returned to the lineup after missing the previous 14 games.

What’s Next?
The Pats (30-24-6) will take on the Warriors for a third straight time on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Brandt Centre. Tickets are available at reginapats.com, the Brandt Centre Box office and at any Regina Safeway where FunZone tickets are just $13 plus tax.

(Phil Andrews/ReginaPats.com)

DEREK DENNIS BACK WITH THE STAMPEDERS


The Calgary Stampeders have signed international offensive lineman Derek Dennis.

Dennis previous played with the Stamps in 2015 and 2016, starting 23 games and winning the CFL's Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman award in 2016. 

The 29-year-old Temple alum spent the 2017 season with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, starting a total of 17 regular-season and playoff games including six at left tackle and 11 at left guard.

"We're obviously very familiar with Derek and I'm pleased that he has agreed to come back to Calgary," said Stampeders president and general manager John Hufnagel. "Derek established himself as one of the top tackles in the CFL during his first stint with the Stamps and I'm looking forward to seeing him play at that high level for us again in 2018."

Prior to first joining the Stamps in 2015, Dennis spent time with a number of NFL teams including Miami, New England, Chicago and Carolina. He played 52 games and made 32 starts over five seasons at Temple.

"I'm excited to be back with the Stamps," said Dennis. "It's a great feeling knowing that I had a chance to return to Calgary and I'm looking forward to picking up where I left off in 2016."

U OF R BASKETBALL: WOMEN ADVANCE, MEN SWEPT

REGINA, Sask. – Kyanna Giles poured in a career-high 28 points to lead the University of Regina’s women’s basketball team to a 71-62 victory over UBC on Friday night in Game 2 of a Canada West quarterfinal sweep at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport.

The win gives the Cougars a two-game sweep over the Thunderbirds as the U of R becomes the first team to advance to the Canada West semifinals.

While Thursday’s win saw the Cougars jump out to an early double-digit lead and hold a comfortable lead the entire way, Friday’s game was a different story. Regina took the lead for good midway through the second quarter and though the Cougars built up a 12-point lead at one juncture in the third quarter, UBC battled back and it was a one-possession game for most of the first half of the fourth.

But the No. 2-ranked Cougars clamped down on defence down the stretch to secure the win. They only surrendered three points in the final five minutes of the game – all of which came on a Jessica Hanson three-pointer – and Giles hit a pair of three-pointers to help the lead balloon back up to 12 with two minutes to go.

The Cougars will now turn their attention to next weekend, which will see them host either Calgary or Victoria in another best-of-three series.

“We were able to make plays down the stretch when we needed to, and I’m extremely happy we got this done in two games,” Cougars head coach Dave Taylor said. “We need to have a good week of preparation heading into a best-of-three semifinal series, which is something we haven’t done in years.”

It’s been 16 years since the Cougars have played in a best-of-three Canada West semifinal. The Cougars beat Alberta in two straight games back in 2002 to advance to the conference final, and Canada West changed the playoff format soon thereafter to go to a Final Four format which saw a single semifinal game immediately followed by a single conference championship game. This year’s format will have two best-of-three semifinals next weekend and a one-game conference final the following weekend.

Next weekend’s semifinal series will again be scheduled for Thursday and Friday with a third and deciding game to be played on Saturday if it’s needed. All games will tip off at 7:00 PM at the CKHS.
_______________________________________

LETHBRIDGE, Alta. - One night after suffering a 47-point defeat, the University of Regina’s men’s basketball team put together a fine effort on the road but ultimately fell short in a 105-98 overtime loss to Lethbridge in Game 2 of the Canada West quarterfinal series.

The win sends Lethbridge off to the conference semifinals, where the Pronghorns will play the winner of the Alberta/UNBC series.

It looked like it might be a disastrous night for the Cougars after Lethbridge scored the first 10 points of the game, but Regina quickly righted the ship with Shaquille Harris leading the charge. Harris scored nine of his 24 points in the first quarter alone and Lethbridge led just 24-23 after the first quarter, and the two teams went into halftime knotted at 45-45.

Both teams shot exactly 42.9% from the field and had similar rebounding and turnover numbers – Regina had 47 rebounds and 18 turnovers while Lethbridge had 43 and 16 – but the difference in Saturday’s game was at the stripe. The Cougars hit only 17 of their 30 attempts from the free throw line, while Lethbridge was 30-for-39.

(Braden Konschuh/Cougar Athletics)

SJHL POWER RANKINGS EDITION 11

By: Mike Stackhouse

1-NIPAWIN HAWKS 38-5-2-4 (1)
Unbeaten in 30 and since the calendar flipped to 2018, rookie Austin Mikesch is leading the way with 11-goals in 14-games.

2-BATTLEFORDS NORTH STARS 38-9-2-0 (2)
Layne Young and Cole Johnson have been the best 1-2 offensive combo in the league in the second half.

3-MELFORT MUSTANGS 34-11-4-1 (3)
Reed Gunville had a real good Showcase and he’s continued in the regular season with 18-points in his last 16-games.

4-HUMBOLDT BRONCOS 30-17-3-2 (4)
Parker Tobin has been fantastic in goal and the Broncos aren’t far off from the big three atop the rankings.

5-ESTEVAN BRUINS 28-17-3-2 (5)
Michael McChesney has 10-goals in his last 12-games, and Bo Didur has helped stabilize the defensive end (2.08-GAA).

6-WEYBURN RED WINGS 26-21-4-0 (8)
Snapped a four game skid on Friday night.  They have to be looking over their shoulder and fearing 8th place and a date with Flin Flon in the Survivor Series.

7-NOTRE DAME HOUNDS 26-21-1-3 (6)
Disappointing second half of the season and five straight losses.

8-KINDERSLEY KLIPPERS 22-20-4-3 (7)
Just when you think they are about to go on a streak, they drop three games they should be expected to win.

9-FLIN FLON BOMBERS 19-23-3-4 (9)
Deceiving team as they have had some real close games with the top teams.

10-MELVILLE MILLIONAIRES 19-29-0-2 (10)
Two wins in a row but nowhere to go in the standings.

11-YORKTON TERRIERS 12-34-2-2 (11)
Too little too late, but they’ve won three in a row and are 4-5-1 in their last ten.  Cole Keenleyside (10-6-6-12) and Quinten Hobbs (10-5-3-8) have been pleasant surprises.

12-LA RONGE ICE WOLVES 8-39-0-3 (12)
Winless in eleven and appear destined for the league’s worst record in light of Yorkton’s recent win streak.

Friday, February 16, 2018

RIDERS SIGN THREE NATIONALS

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have signed national running back Johnny Augustin, national defensive back Adam Laurensse and national defensive lineman Cory Robinson.             

Augustin (5’8 – 202) joins the Riders after spending five seasons at the University of Guelph, where he registered 2,921 rushing yards and 28 touchdowns in 37 career collegiate games.

The 24-year-old was acquired by the Riders in December’s CFL negotiation list draft. He attended 2017 training camp with the Edmonton Eskimos after originally signing with the team as an undrafted free agent. 

Laurensse (6’1 – 185) joins the Riders after spending five seasons at the University of Calgary, where he collected 125 career defensive tackles and 16 interceptions.   

He was named a Canada West All-Star for five straight seasons.

The 24-year-old was originally selected by the Calgary Stampeders in the 7th round (61st overall) of the 2017 CFL Draft. He was acquired by the Riders last August. 

Robinson (6’3 - 251) joins the Riders after playing four seasons at the University of Calgary. The 23-year-old registered 86.5 defensive tackles, 19 tackles for loss and 14 quarterback sacks in 40 career collegiate games with the Dinos.

He was named a Canada West All-Star in 2015 and 2017.

JOHN MURPHY ADDRESSES RIDER MOVES

Saskatchewan Roughriders Assistant V.P. of Football Personnel John Murphy joined 620 CKRM's SportsCage on Thursday to discuss the team's moves so far in the 2018 CFL Free Agent season.

Murphy said they're pleased with the way their roster is shaping up.

"When you look at the age of our football club, it was mentioned at the beginning of last year as a question mark and then leading into the playoffs it was considered a positive at an average age of 26," Murphy explained. "All of these kids are in the prime of their careers. Sometimes when you come into Regina you're not sure what you're getting yourself into but now we know who these people are that we're putting in that locker room because their talent is unquestioned.

"Zack Evans was eager to seen as soon as the opportunity was presented to him. It didn't take a lot of convincing. Sam Hurl had some options but chose to go with us and Jerome Messam was the same story. Our fans speak for themselves and our facility has done wonders attracting players. From what everybody has seen, our organization is always going to be first class."

Murphy was asked if the Rider braintrust is comfortable with where their roster sits today.

"We wouldn't be comfortable until that last car of the Grey Cup parade pulls into the parking lot," Murphy quipped. "You can't sit on last year or sit on the fact that we were 2:37 away from advancing to the Grey Cup. You have to look finitely at the areas of games where we didn't perform at the level we wanted or get where we wanted to go. Being able to get first downs rushing the ball in short yardage, getting a consistent pass rush with four guys, those are the areas we've attempted to upgrade in free agency and via trades."

Murphy also said it was tough to release high-priced veterans LB Henoc Muamba and OL Derek Dennis this week.

"Incredibly difficult," Murphy offered. "From the Henoc perspective, it's what he brought to the table. When we weren't a balanced team by any means, he accepted what we offered back in 2016 and offered a lot for a year-and-a-half as a strong defensive player and the added bonus of being Canadian. We all know what type of person he is away from the field. He enjoys doing things in the community so you're not anxious to remove a person like that but we have salary cap implications. Since Henoc was drafted #1 overall, the Canadian linebacker depth in the country has exploded with talent. Whereas at Canadian defensive tackle, Zack Evans is probably the next-biggest name to Ted Laurent. There's a lot more Canadian linebackers getting to the big dollar range.

"In the past we paid for what we wanted to buy and tried to strengthen both sides of the line. Derek Dennis was a big part of that. It was very important in that time frame to do what we did but we've reset and seen where we're at. Our main job is to find the best available roster and if we can't find a quality American lineman, there's something wrong with us. You draft and trade for the best Canadian linemen and find a quality quarterback but the good young American linemen need to be brought in and developed. Every team in the final four in the past few years has played with a good, young American lineman that they've found."

RP
@rodpedersen

SCRUFFY'S THIS N' THAT

Welcome to Friday.  Here are the usual weekly thoughts running through my muddled mind. As always, they come in no particular order:

- So Rider Nation, what are your thoughts on CFL free agency and what your team has done so far?  I think for the most part, you have to be pleased with what has gone on.  Yes, the loss of Henoc Muamba was a tough one to take, but the $$$$ weren't there. There are some other questions to ask like who plays left tackle if Bruce Campbell doesn't come back and who slides in that spot if Campbell does back for the first two games? Who replaces Kacy Rodgers? There is still a lot of time before training camp to answer those questions.

- The biggest move made was perhaps the one that everyone called; Zack Evans coming back to Saskatchewan.  Yes, losing him in the expansion draft was a move no one saw coming except for the REDBLACKS as the Rider regime back in the day took a gamble that failed. What we saw was Evans develop into one of the best interior d-linemen in the league with a Canadian birth certificate.  This has the potential to be a huge signing for the /=S=/.

Evans might have wanted to take a day or two before making a decision because I'm sure his services were sought after, but he knew where he wanted to go and the offer was right so why wait?

- The Jerome Messam signing makes me wonder what the team will do with its existing stable of running backs. As I said on the Sportscage Wednesday, unless there is something we don't know when it comes to Trent Richardson and his status, I have to think Cameron Marshall could be the odd man out. That is no slight on Marshall either.  I just think the Riders probably think more of what Richardson can bring them after doggedly pursuing him to come north.  I don't think Marshall gets cut, but perhaps he gets traded to find that middle linebacker or left tackle that could be needed.  Is Toronto an option? What about Montreal or Hamilton?  Messam says he turned down both of those teams so they are obviously looking.

- I realize we are going into what could be a rather contentious bargaining session for a new collective bargaining agreement, but I am getting tired of these one-year deals that are being signed.  It does nothing for team consistency, it does nothing for team jersey sales, it does very little for the community and the work players do in it. How can you establish a firm relationship within the community when you are on a one-year deal? I fully understand why the one-year deals are being signed across the league, but show some faith in your team and system and sign some multi-year contracts. Do players just want to be mavericks travelling from city to city or do they want to set down roots and play in whatever city and maybe raise a family in that city?  Maybe in this day and age, I'm out to lunch on this issue, but the one-year deal doesn't excite me at all.  That being said, the Riders are taking full advantage of this it would seem by signing guys to big one year deals. They are all-in for this season and then they will see where the economic climate can take them in 2019.  You really can't argue that approach when it is available.

- Did Nik Lewis spill the beans or some hot air Thursday night? As we know, commissioner Randy Ambrosie is going across the country listening to fans and part of his town hall meetings revolve around the schedule and the thought process about moving it up. Lewis says it's already a done deal and that the reason the sked is being moved up isn't because of the fans, its because the NFL Network is paying the league to move games up so they can be shown. Lewis goes on to say that he doesn't understand why the PA hasn't made an offer already. If what Lewis is saying is true, and one can't discount it at this time, it means more money will be on the table - money the players will want.

- The Regina Pats are going to make the playoffs. There is no doubt about that as far as this blogger is concerned. After that, who knows!  Unless there is a sharp increase in play, this team will be done once they face the Broncos or Warriors. While the Pats have played with those two teams in the four games they have played against them since the trade deadline, the bottom line is they have 0 victories to show for it. They played well against Swift Current, but didn't get the two points.  Moose Jaw came in here and blew their doors off in the first period in the first matchup between the two and on Wednesday, they used a 43 second stretch to win again.

As frustrating as it is for the fans, I can't imagine what it must be like for John Paddock and crew.  Paddock remains as cool as a cucumber when talking about his team to myself and others, but once the office door is closed, he must be seething knowing they are so close, but so far away.

- Hometown Hockey comes to Regina this weekend with everything being set up in City Square Plaza.  If you get a chance to see Ron McLean do his thing, take advantage of it. There is no one better in this country at doing what he does than McLean.  I can't say enough good things about him.

- Being a Pats fan in the late 70's and early 80's and doing lap after lap after lap around the Agridome, there was no better line than that of Dave Michayluk, Wally Schreiber and Jock Callander. To this kid, they could skate around the ice and do whatever. They could seemingly score at will. In the 1981-82 season, Callander had 190 points, Michayluk had 173 and Schreiber had 111. You can't find a line to even come to close to that today. Oh by the way, some guy named Derkatch had 142 points.  That team might have been my favourite all-time Pats team.  That was the one coached by Bill Laforge that could score and could fight.  That squad had the  likes of Jeff Crawford, Marc Centrone, Garth Butcher and Al Tuer on it.  What a team!  Michayluk was my favourite out of the bunch and is still one of my favourite all-time Pats. Callander was right up there too, so I was very happy to hear his number would be retired Sunday before the Pats-Warriors game.

It is going to be a great weekend under the dome so take it in and soak in homecoming weekend whether it be by taking in the alumni game Saturday, the WHL game on Sunday or both.

- By the way, why is this centennial gala dinner being held tonight when the team is in Moose Jaw playing a game? Shouldn't John Paddock and his players be a part of the big dinner and the festivities. Give them a chance to rub elbows with those in attendance?  That's a head-scratcher!

- The Regina Red Sox are bringing Todd Stottlemyre to town to speak at their annual dinner April 28. Stottlemyre was not one of the players who comes to mind when you think of the two Toronto teams that won the World Series, but he was front and center in maybe the wildest game of those two World Series playoff runs as he started that 15-14 win in Philadelphia and had one of the more awkward slides in baseball history.  He will have some stories to tell.

- No surprise to see Dave Taylor's Cougar women's basketball team beat UBC to take the opener of their Canada West semi-final.  Can we just have the Cougars and Huskies play a best of 5 to determine the Canada West champ?   I don't know how the seeding will work when it comes time for nationals, but if the draw works out to the point we see a U of S/U of R final, they might have to put some TV's in the lobby outside the CKHS for fans to watch what is going on inside.  It will be an atmosphere second to none.

- Does Steve Simmons actually realize his column on mixed curling which was sooooooooo off base this week has given the sport more promotion and increased awareness?  The curling community let Simmons know what they thought about his thoughts.  Simmons went to Twitter the other night to acknowledge that and add no one from figure skating got on his case for the team figure skating event which he also believes is a sham.  Hmmmmmmmmm!!!

- That's all I got.  Enjoy the long weekend. Get out to the Brandt Centre if you can for what should be a great weekend of hockey.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

PATS HOMECOMING ANNOUNCEMENTS

Regina – The Regina Pats Hockey Club is pleased to announce that members of the Regina Pats Alumni Association are going to face-off against members of the Soldier On organization as part of Homecoming Weekend.

This informal game takes place on Friday, February 16, 2018 at 1:30 p.m. at the Brandt Centre.

Soldier On is an organization that supports veterans and serving members of the military to adapt and overcome permanent physical or mental health injuries through physical activity and sport.

As part of the salute to military, the Regina Pats will be hosting the Soldier On organization throughout the Homecoming Weekend.

This is a free, informal event and fans are welcome to attend. Those who plan to come can enter the Brandt Centre through the West Side (Lewvan Drive) door. The puck drops at 1:30 p.m.

Pats alumni taking part in the game are Jock Callander, Drew Callander, Russ Gronick, Boyd Kane, Frank Kovacs, Kelly Markwart, Clint Orr, Mike Reich, Doug Trapp, Tony Vogel, Kurt Wickenheiser and Shaun Fleming.

A number of Pats alumni will serve as coaches for the game, Ed Staniowski, Nevin Markwart, Bart Hunter and Darren Wilcox.

The Regina Pats would also like to encourage their fans to support the Soldier On Fund. For more information and to make a donation please visit https://www.soldieron.ca.
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Regina – The Regina Pats Hockey Club is pleased to announce they will honour one of the all-time greats, Jock Callander in a jersey retirement ceremony on Sunday afternoon at the Brandt Centre.

Callander’s number 15 will be raised to the rafters ahead of the Pats game against the Moose Jaw Warriors.

“This jersey retirement is long overdue,” said Pats President Todd Lumbard. “Jock was a dominant player in our league and is one of the greatest Pats of all time.”

Callander played for the Pats from 1978-1982, putting up 158 goals and 210 assists for 368 points in just 201 games. He sits sixth all-time in franchise scoring, his 158 goals are tied for seventh all-time and the 210 assists are sixth best in franchise history.

His best season came in 1981-82 when he won the Bob Clark Trophy as the WHL Leading scorer with 190 points in 71 games.

Callander was a member of the Pats last WHL Championship club in 1980 and appeared in the Memorial Cup. In 49 career WHL playoff games, he scored 27 goals and had 66 points.

“It is an incredible honour to have my jersey retired,” said Callander. “There are so many great names already hanging at the rink and it is an honour to be considered a part of that group.”

Callander, a product of Regina, went on to play professionally for 18 years after his Pats career, winning a Stanley Cup with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1992. The majority of his pro career was spent with the Cleveland Lumberjacks of the IHL where his number 15 has been retired as well. In 1054 games in the IHL, Callander put up 477 goals and 1242 points which is the most by any player to play in that league.

The Pats organizations is proud to be able to honour Jock Callander and his family this Sunday in a pre-game ceremony starting at 2 p.m. at the Brandt Centre.

STOTTLEMYRE TO HEADLINE REGINA RED SOX DINNER

The Regina Red Sox have once again it hit out of the park with this year’s guest speaker.

Todd Stottlemyre, who spent 15 years in the Majors, anchored the Toronto Blue Jays pitching staff that won two World Series Championships.

Sponsored by 9 agents from Century 21 Dome Realty Inc, Stottlemyre will be the guest speaker at the 2017 Regina Red Sox Sports Dinner & Auction presented by The Water Warehouse.

This year’s dinner will be held on Saturday, April 28, 2018 at the Turvey Centre

Todd Stottlemyre Bio

Todd Stottlemyre was a key cog in the rotation for both of the Blue Jays World Championship teams in 1992 & 1993.

In a career that spanned 15 years, Stottlemyre pitched for five teams including the Toronto Blue Jays, Oakland A’s, St. Louis Cardinals, Texas Rangers and finishing off with Arizona Diamondbacks in Phoenix where he resides to this day.

Stottlemyre amassed over 1500 strikeouts and won nearly 150 Major League games.

In 2000, Stottlemyre was awarded both the Lou Gehrig award and Branch Richey award by Major League Baseball, which is given to a Major Leaguer for their exemplary contributions in philanthropy and community involvement.

Upon his retirement in 2002, Stottlemyre became heavily involved in stock market trading and went on to own his own hedge fund.

Stottlemyre is part of many multi-level marketing companies and has become an award winning keynote speaker and author.

Todd spends his current time in Arizona with his wife and five children and is active with mentoring business professionals and companies.

The Regina Red Sox is a not for profit, community organization. This yearly event is necessary to sustain the team and continue its-on-field success.

(Outlaw Communications)

COUGAR WOMEN BB TAKE GAME 1

REGINA, Sask. – The University of Regina’s women’s basketball team took a double-digit lead after the opening quarter and never looked back, defeating UBC by an 85-70 score in Game 1 of a best-of-three Canada West quarterfinal series at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport.

The duo of Kyanna Giles and Charlotte Kot again led the way for the Cougars. Giles tied for the game high with 20 points, led all players with seven assists, and also pulled down six rebounds while Kot added 19 points and six rebounds in the win.

The Cougars used a quick 10-0 run over two minutes late in the first quarter to build up a double-digit lead, a surge that was capped by one of Sara Hubenig’s three triples in the opening period. Regina led 24-13 after one and held a double-digit lead for almost the remainder of the game. The Cougars went ahead by 23 points midway through the third quarter and while UBC scored the next 12 points to get back to within 11, the visiting Thunderbirds weren’t able to get any closer.

“I thought we were inconsistent defensively tonight, which we can’t afford against a team with three talented scorers like UBC has,” Regina head coach Dave Taylor said. “Offensively, when we got out and ran we did good things but we’ll have to make sure we do a better job tomorrow in an elimination game.”

Three other Cougars hit double figures in scoring besides Giles and Kot. Hubenig finished with 12 points – all of which came on her four three-pointers – while Christina McCusker also scored 12 and Carolina Goncalves added 10 points. Hubenig also had a team-leading seven rebounds and five assists for the U of R.

Maddison Penn was 6-for-11 from the field including 3-for-4 from three-point range and led UBC with 20 points. Penn also had seven rebounds, while Keylyn Filewich had 15 points and 12 rebounds for a double-double.

The series continues on Friday night (7:00) at the CKHS. The Cougars will be attempting to book an early ticket to next weekend’s Canada West semifinals, while UBC will try to force a third and deciding game which would be played on Saturday.

MESSAM FEELING YOUNG AGAIN


Running back Jerome Messam spoke with Regina reporters on a conference call on Thursday, 24 hours after signing as a free agent for the 2018 CFL season.

Here are some comments from the session:

WHY SASKATCHEWAN?

JM: We were in discussions with three teams: Hamilton, Toronto and Saskatchewan. Honestly it just felt like home to me. I didn't want to start over somewhere else. I was there in Regina, I felt at home and I didn't want to leave (he was traded to Calgary in October of 2015). I was excited to get back and be part of what they're building over there.

WHY DOES IT FEEL LIKE HOME?

JM: Just the atmosphere around football and the love I felt from the fans.  It's just a very warm feeling in the locker room. I'm very comfortable with Jeremy O'Day and it was John Murphy who wanted me in Calgary and now he's there. The talent that's in the locker room, you can tell the organization is on the up and up. We struggled when I was there so it'll be nice to come there and win.

WHERE DO YOU FIT IN?

JM: Hopefully to be the guy. I'm gonna go in there with the mentality of being the guy. I'm going to train and prepare for that. We've got some great backs like Trent Richardson and Marcus Thigpen. We've all got a lot of juice left. It'll be a great training camp and I hope we all can make the team better.

HOW DID YOU FEEL ABOUT THE TRADE IN 2015?

JM: I was shocked. I didn't see it coming at all but that's just the business. Funny how things work out that I've got the chance to come back. For me, personally, I feel like there's a lot of unfinished business there. We lost a lot of close games when I was there and we had coaching changes. A lot of things went wrong that season so it'll be nice to get back and right the wrong.

HOW DO YOU FEEL AT 30-PLUS?

JM: It's all about your mindset and how you approach your training. As far as the physical aspect goes, I still feel like I'm 25. Mentally, I put so much more time in in film study that it makes me that much more productive when I'm out on the field.

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THIS O-LINE?

JM: I'm very familiar with Labatte and Clark. We just signed Bond. I don't know how it'll shape up but I'm confident in Chris Jones and how he's going to build the team. If the whole team starts with the offensive line, they'll build through there.

RP
@rodpedersen

COORS LIGHT RECAP: PATS FALL 6-3 TO WARRIORS

Keith Hershmiller Photography
Regina – The Regina Pats fell 6-3 at the hands of the Moose Jaw Warriors on Wednesday night at the Brandt Centre.

Moose Jaw took a 1-0 lead at the seven minute mark but Cameron Hebig responded for the Pats on a breakaway for his 39th and it was 1-1 after 20 minutes.

In the second, Sam Steel scored on the powerplay for his 22nd of the year to give the Pats the 2-1 lead. However, Moose Jaw came back and scored three times in a span of 43 seconds to lead 4-2 and that as the score at the second intermission.

The Warriors added to the lead at the 6:30 mark of the third to make it 5-2 but Josh Mahura got it back with a powerplay goal, his 19th and it was 5-3.

The Pats pulled their goaltender late and the Warriors would score into the empty cage to make it 6-3 and that was the final score.

Matt Bradley led the Pats with three assists, Sam Steel and Josh Mahura had two points while Max Paddock made 30 saves.

The shots on goal were 36-36, the Regina powerplay went two for five and the penalty kill four for five.

Quick Hits
- Matt Bradley extended his point streak to four games with a three assist night. Has three goals and three helpers in that stretch.
- Josh Mahura put up a goal and an assist and has three goals and six assists against the Warriors this season.
- The Pats are now 20-11-2-0 on home ice this season.

What’s Next?
The Pats (29-24-6) are back in action on the road Friday against the Moose Jaw Warriors at 7 p.m. on 620 CKRM. Next home game is Sunday at 2 p.m. against Moose Jaw. Tickets are available at reginapats.com, the Brandt Centre Box office and at any Regina Safeway where FunZone tickets are just $13 plus tax.

(Phil Andrews/ReginaPats.com)