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Leafs ready to kick off KIJHL exhibition season

The Nelson Daily Sports
By The Nelson Daily Sports
September 7th, 2023

The Nelson Leafs appear to have hit the ground running to start the 2023-24 Kootenay International Junior Hockey League season.

The Leafs saw approximately 39 players attend training camp last weekend at the NDCC Arena, with 30 remaining with the team to begin the exhibition season, that opens Friday at home against the Creston Valley Thunder Cats.

“There’s a wide range of players from all over BC, Alberta, Ontario and Northwest Territories,” Leaf assistant coach Russell Sanderson told The Nelson Daily.

Some of the returning players currently on the roster include defencemen Tyler Seminoff, Zach Karran and Carsyn Crawford and forwards Leighton Partington, Seamus Boyd, Kieran Christianson, Crae Dawson and Dawson Davis.

Nelson has three goalies still in camp — Jackson McLeod, Brock Lott and Todd Hiscock.

Friday, at 7 p.m. in the NDCC Arena, local fans will get a taste of what to expect this season from the Leafs.

“We want to give fans a bit of a look at the talent we have here this year,” said Sanderson, who arrived in Nelson after spending time with Campbell River Storm of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League.

“We feel we have a strong team this year so the goal in the exhibition season is to get fans excited about all the players we recruited here this year.”

Head coach Briar McNaney and General Manager Lance Morey have been busy this offseason finding players for a Leaf team that was knocked out in the first round of the KIJHL playoff after finishing the regular season in second place in Murdoch Division with a 24-15-4-1 record.

Friday’s game is the only home date for Nelson on the exhibition season.

Saturday, the Leafs travel to to Couer d’Alene, Idaho to face the Spokane Braves before returning for a Sunday after contest in Fruitvale against the Beaver Valley Nitehawks.

Nelson concludes the exhibition season Friday, September 15 in Creston.

The Leafs open the regular season Friday, September 22 at home against the Revelstoke Grizzlies.

Categories: Sports


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