The Virden Oil Capitals have added 7 new faces to the organization, to go along with their 2 auto protect selections, in the annual MJHL Prospect Draft which took place on Sunday in Winnipeg.
The Oil Caps did not have a pick in the first round after using it to acquire forward Luke Robson early last week from the Waywayseecappo Wolverines. The team started their draft by taking forward Maxx Hamelin in the 2nd round (22nd overall). Hamelin is a skilled forward that works hard at both ends of the rink and had an impressive rookie season with the U18 AAA Winnipeg Bruins. He suited up in 43 regular season games and scored 16 goals and added 27 assists, good enough for a point a game pace. Hamelin then added another 9 points in 10 playoff games as the Bruins went to the league final where they lost to the Winnipeg Wild.
In the 3rd round (36th overall) the Oil Caps selected forward Bryan Laing from the U18 Southwest Cougars. Laing, from Boissevain, MB, is a good skating, high energy guy that plays a gritty 200 ft game and will be tough to play against when he is ready to play in the league. He had 4 goals and 7 assists for 11 points in 43 games for the Cougars and helped them to a playoff berth where they lost in the first round to the Brandon U18 Wheat Kings.
The Oil Caps then had a very busy 4th round where they had 3 picks. They took forward Lian Hanzmann (44th overall) from the U17 Winnipeg Thrashers. He had 16 points in 30 games to go along with 58 penalty minutes and he also suited up in 8 games for the U18 Thrashers as an AP.
With the 50th overall pick the Oil Caps selected goaltender Austin Kindrat of the U18 Winnipeg Thrashers. He played in 19 regular season games and posted a save % of .892. He also played in 2 playoff games with a save % of .900.
With their last pick in the 4th round (55th overall) the Oil Caps selected local player Lynden Green-Gould from the U17 Westman Ice Bandits. Green-Gould hails from Wawanesa, MB and had an impressive rookie season with the newly formed Ice Bandits where he put up 21 goals, 22 assists and 79 penalty mins in 34 regular season games. A teammate of auto protect selection Tyson Draper, the 2 helped the Ice Bandits to a playoff berth in just their first season where they would beat the Eastman Selects in round 1 and then lose to the eventual league champion Winnipeg Bruins in the 2nd round. The gritty, hard working Green-Gould scored 3 goals and added 6 assists for 9 points in 8 playoff games.
In the 5th round (64th overall) the Oil Caps took forward Tyler Free from the U17 Winnipeg Bruins. A skilled forward who put up 22 points in 36 regular season games and had another 5 points in 7 playoff games for the league champion Bruins.
With their last pick of the draft, the Oil Caps selected defenceman Beckham Garchinski (78th overall) of the U18 Interlake Lightning. The tall smooth skating dman from Winnipeg had 1 goal and 5 assists in 40 games for the Lightning and has the potential to be a very very good junior A defender.
Overall the Oil Caps were extremely pleased with their selections in the 2023 MJHL Prospect Draft and GM and Head Coach Tyson Ramsey shared his thoughts.
“We are very excited about the new young talent that we have added to our organization over the last couple weeks”, said Ramsey. “We have added good players that work hard on and off the ice and equally as important they are good people off the ice. They will fit right into and add to the culture we are continuing to add here and one that helped push us to the league final this past season. We are very excited to get these young players to Virden and get them on the ice in August.”
Next up for the Oil Caps is the annual hockey school being held the last weekend of July, followed by the prospect camp August 8-10 where fans can get their first look at the newest members of the Virden Oil Capitals.
Virden’s 1st pick, 2nd Round, 22nd overall, Maxx Hamelin from Winnipeg, MB from the Winnipeg Bruins U18 AAA
Virden’s 2nd pick, 3rd Round, 36th overall, Bryan Laing from the Southwest Cougars U18 AAA
Virden’s 3rd pick, 4th Round, 44th, Lian Hanzmann from the Winnipeg Thrashrs U17
Virden’s 4th pick, 4th round, 50th overall, Austin Kindrat from the Winnpeg Thrashers U18
Virden’s 5th pick, 4th round, 55th overall, Lynden Gould from the Westman Ice Bandits U17
Virden’s 6th pick, 5th round, 64th overall, Tyler Free from the Winnipeg Bruins U17
Virden’s 7th pick, 6th round, 78th overall, Beckam Garchinski from the Interlake Lightning