Thursday, 29 August 2013

Billaney Looking for Name Recognition

Braden  Billaney
  You know you're not well known when the team that drafted you misspells your name.

  However, Braden Billaney is hoping to make a name for himself at the Brandon Wheat Kings' training camp this week.

  The Boissevain, Manitoba product was an 11th round pick of the Wheat Kings and the club's final selection in the 2013 Bantam Draft in May.

  "I was super surprised because after the tenth round, I stopped watching because I know they usually don't pick many guys after that," said Billaney after Wednesday evening's scrimmage, "One of my buddies called me to give me congratulations and I asked for what and he told me I was part of the Brandon Wheat Kings."

  Much of the attention on Brandon's 2013 draft class as been focused on first round picks Nolan Patrick and Kale Clague and second round pick Tanner Kaspick, and rightfully so.

  However, the 5-foot-8, 150 pound Billaney says training camp is his chance to get some attention.

  He scored a goal and laid out a few hits in the opening scrimmage Wednesday morning and was also noticable in his play Wednesday night.

  "I just came in, trying to get noticed and meet a few guys," said Billaney, "I just come here and play my hardest.  After the first game, I had about a five-hour nap, I was so tired."

  Billaney had 14 goals and 24 points in 30 games with the Southwest Bantams in 2012-2013 and is expected to play with the AAA Midget Southwest Cougars this coming season.

  "My main strength is skating, I think, I'm a pretty good skater," said Billarney, "I like to get in the corners and be really gritty."

  In Wednesday night's scrimmage, Ryley Lindgren scored three times and Dylan Thiessen had two goals and three assists as the Whites built up a 6-0 lead before holding on for a 6-5 win.

  Ben Dalke also scored for Team White while Tyler Coulter had two goals for the Team Gold, with singles to Liam Gregor, Linden McCorrister and Braylon Shmyr.

  The Wheat Kings' Rookie Camp continues Thursday with scrimmages at 10:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. at Westman Communications Group Place.

Chaff...the WHL's Kelowna Rockets have signed head coach Ryan Huska to a three-year contract extension that'll run through the 2016-2017 season...the Regina Pats have signed F Sam Steele, the second overall pick in the 2013 Bantam Draft. to a standard WHL Player Agreement...the Saskatoon Blades have signed their top three picks in the 2013 Bantam Draft -- Nolan Reid, Parker Smyth and Luke Gingras.

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