The annual MJHL Bantam Draft was held on Sunday and the Virden Oil Capitals were extremely pleased with how the draft unfolded and their 2020 draft class. The Oil Capitals had 6 selections in the draft (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 6th and 8th) and got a little of everything with their picks.
In the first round, 6th overall, the Oil Caps selected F London Hoilett from Winnipeg. Hoilett played 50 games for the RHA Nationals and had 27 goals and 19 assists for 46 points. He plays the game extremely hard and has the ability to score. When spoken to after the draft, Hoilett and his family were ‘very very happy’ to be coming to Virden.
In Round 2, 17th overall, the Oil Caps took F Evan Groening from Niverville, MB. He also suited up for the RHA Nationals where he played 50 games and had 8 goals and 15 assists for 23 points. Groening is an excellent skater and he has the ability to play the game with speed and has a great shot. He also expressed that Virden was at the top of his list.
Round 3, 28th overall, saw the Oil Caps look locally to select F Nolan Chastko from Brandon. Chastko played in 36 games and had 33 goals and 27 assists for 60 points. He is an extremely skilled athlete who got better and better as the year went on and he can obviously score. The Oil Caps were very happy to have added a local player of his caliber.
The Oil Caps then had a couple of rounds to wait until they picked G Owen LaRocque from Wawanesa in the 6th round, 61st overall. Owen was 11-6 for the Southwest Bantam Cougars with a 2.60 GAA and 0.930 SA% and is regarded as one of the top goalies is age in the province. The Oil Caps were fortunate to still have a chance at a goaltender of LaRocque’s caliber in the 6th round.
With their second pick in the 6th round, 63rd overall, the Oil Caps selected F Dawson Andries from Killarney. Dawson also played for the Southwest Bantam Cougars and appeared in 35 games where he had 12 goals and 20 assists for 32 points. He comes from a good family and plays the game with determination and grit. He adds to a strong forward group and he was thrilled to be selected by the Oil Capitals.
With their last pick in round 8, 83rd overall, the Oil Caps addressed the defence with the selection of D Parker Grift from Winnipeg. Parker played 35 games for the Winnipeg Hawks and had 1 goal and 9 assists for 10 points. He is a consistent competitor who defends well, makes a good first pass and has some real good leadership qualities. He will be a welcome addition to a strong group of prospects on the back end.
Brian Elder, the Oil Caps head scout was pleased with the day, “I would like to thank our scouting staff and welcome the players we selected today. We feel we had a great draft. We think we got a little bit of everything and added some real depth to our strong list of prospects”, stated Elder.
GM and Head Coach Tyson Ramsey had this to say, “We are very happy with our selections in this year’s draft. Our scouting staff, led by Brian Elder and Scott Coates, put together another solid list and we felt that we added some real good players both up front, on the back end and in goal. We felt like with every selection we had some great players to choose from. It was an exciting day for our group and we can’t wait to have these guys come to camp in August”.