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Zimmer feels right at home with Oil Caps

As is the case every year, the Virden Oil Capitals will have a group of players who will be graduating from the team after the season. Over the next several weeks, oilcapshockey.com will be highlighting each soon-to-be graduate with a feature story on each player. Today, we feature Rylee Zimmer. Enjoy.

Now that some time has passed since the trade, Rylee Zimmer couldn’t be happier.

“I love it here,” said the 20-year-old forward who was acquired by the Oil Capitals late November from the Portage Terriers. “We’ve got a good group of guys and we’ve got a real good chance of winning so it’s really enjoyable.”

The Russell product has a familiar face that’s helped him become acclimated to his new surroundings. Teammate Landyn Cochrane, who was also acquired by the Oil Caps via trade in November, grew up with Zimmer in Russell.

“It helps that me and Landyn grew up playing hockey together since we’ve been six years old,” added the 6-foot-2 forward.

Zimmer has even found himself playing alongside his longtime friend on a line this season and their chemistry is clearly evident. Zimmer has eight goals and seven assists for 15 points in 17 games with his new team (as of Jan. 29).

“Recently everything has been clicking – just knowing where each other is going to be and stuff like that – it’s really been working. It’s lots of fun. Hopefully we can keep it going here over the last push of the season.”

He says his family come to as many games of his as they can.

“They’ve been to basically every game at home and most of the away games. They’re very supportive that way, which is also nice.”

Zimmer likes the makeup of the club moving forward as well and believes the team has the makings of something special.

“We’re very deep up front and our D core is very deep as well. So is our goaltending. So when I look at our team, we for sure have what it takes, it’s just that come playoff time, we got to show up every night. I don’t see why we can’t come out on top of this league.”

When Zimmer isn’t at the rink, he’s either playing video games, fishing or hanging out with friends, he says.

“Love campfires and just hanging out and eating smores,” he said with a laugh.

Zimmer doesn’t have any definite plans after this season but would like to play university hockey next year.

“If not, I’ll go to school and get a job. Let the real world begin I guess,” he added with a grin.