The Oil Caps annual Spring Camp will be held this coming weekend from Thursday, May 14 to Saturday, May 16.
Approximately 45 players from across the Manitoba and Western Canada will embark on Virden for the three day event. The Spring Camp is an annual weekend that allows the Oil Caps coaching staff and scouts to evaluate prospects as they compete against one another to climb up the team’s depth chart. Many of the players in this weekend’s camp are currently on the Virden 50-man protected player list, while others will be competing to raise their stock value so they can become part of that list.
The ages of the players competing in this weekends camp will range from 15 to 19 – that’s players born in 1999 to players born in 1996. Current Oil Caps players such as Cole Oliver, Zach Whitecloud, and Dylan Thiessen are also anticipated to attend and may take part in some of the weekend scrimmage action.
This is the second prospect weekend for the Oil Caps who also held a Draft Eligible Camp two weekends ago on May 2-3.
“The draft eligible weekend was something we decided we wanted to try and do,” stated Troy Leslie, Head Coach and General Manager. “That weekend allowed us to watch all of the top 2000-born players against each other rather than having them mixed with other age groups.” All of the players that took part in the camp on May 2-3 are eligible to be chosen in the upcoming MJHL Draft in Neepawa on June 7.
In total, there were 43 kids who took part in the Draft Eligible weekend. Of those 43, 14 of them suited up for the Southwest AAA Bantam Cougars last season while eight players attended camp from the Yellowhead and Brandon AAA Bantam teams. Local product, Tanner Andrew, along with Oak Lake’s Riley Wallace and Josh Wiens were in attendance at camp while Elkhorn’s Layne Toder was also in the mix.
“It was a successful weekend overall,” Leslie continued. “We liked what we saw from the group and are excited about this year’s draft class.”
[WHLDraft] The weekend proved to be a competitive camp as on Thursday, May 7, eight of the players who were at the draft eligible weekend were selected in the Western Hockey League’s Bantam Draft. They were as follows:
Round 1 – #14 – Regina Pats
Dawson Barteaux – Foxwarren, MB
Round 2 – #32 – Swift Current Broncos
Owen Blocker – Dugald, MB
Round 2 – #42 – Calgary Hitmen
Noah Geekie – Strathclair, MB
Round 4 – #85 – Calgary Hitmen
Layne Toder – Elkhorn, MB
Round 5 – #102 – Victoria Royals
Grady Hobbs – Deloraine, MB
Round 6 – #132 – Brandon Wheat Kings
Garrett Sambrook – Medora, MB
Round 8 – #155 – Saskatoon Blades
Mackenzie Belinski – Vista, MB
Round 9 – #195 – Everett Silvertips
Everett Ireland – Brandon, MB
This weekend’s Spring Camp will begin on Thursday afternoon with camp registration and will run all day Friday before wrapping up on Saturday morning.