The Nelson Leafs are hopeful a few changes can fill the small cracks that recently appeared in the Good Ship Leaf as the Heritage City club prepares to return to Kootenay International Junior Hockey League action Friday in Chase against the Heat.
The Leafs have acquired 6’2”, 180-pound defenceman Tulsen Fawcett from the Melfort Mustangs of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League while at the same time see forward Shawn Campbell return to the Green and White following a short stint in the Maritime Hockey League.
Leaf GM Lance Morey said Fawcett is a very hard worker who plays physical. “He prides himself on being a solid defenceman in his own end,” Morey said.
Meanwhile, the coaching staff is excited to get Campbell back in a Leaf jersey after the Castlegar native played two games for St. Stephen County Aces of the Maritime Hockey League. Morey said Campbell decided to jettison to the east coast on the advice former coaches in Castlegar and Grand Forks.
“They have been poaching players from their former teams as well as others in the KIJHL,” Morey explained. “Almost to a player they have realized the team is poorly run and the league is a graveyard for players wanting to move forward.”
Fawcett played six games for Melfort, finishing with two points and 19 minutes in penalties.
Campbell played two games for the Aces this past weekend. The Aces have two former Castlegar Rebels on the roster in Everett Hicks and Brandon Costa.
Morey said both Fawcett and Campbell are expected to be with the Leafs on their road trip to Chase and 100 Mile House this weekend.
Morey also said Nelson, riding a three-game losing streak, also added netminder Hunter Young. The High River, AB, native played with Selkirk of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League and Flin Flon of the SJHL. Young joins Caiden Kreitz and C.J. Wedenig as Nelson now has three netminders on the roster.
Despite the recent slide, Nelson remains in top spot in the Murdoch Division of the KIJHL, six points ahead of second place Spokane Braves and Beaver Valley Nitehawks.
Next home action for the Leafs is Saturday, November 17th when Fernie Ghostriders invade the NDCC Arena.