Thursday, 1 October 2015

Shmyr Hoping to Take Off

Braylon Shmyr (in green)
  Braylon Shmyr is hoping a strong finish last season will lead to offensive success this year.

  The third-year Wheat Kings' forward had 13 goals and 29 points in 34 second half games in 2014-2015, and also tied for the team-lead with four goals in the pre-season last month.

  "I just learned from last year, what I did, and just need to bring that to this year and add on to it to help me play a lot better," said Shmyr after Thursday's practice.

  While it didn't pay immediate dividends with points on the opening weekend of the regular season, Shmyr was on the ice for four even-strength goals for during the club's home-and-home series against Swift Current.

  Shmyr, Brandon's first round pick in the 2012 Bantam Draft, continues to play in a top-6 forward role and is also seeing time on the club's power-play units so far this season.

  "I'm not too worried about that.  It's going game-by-game here, getting better from it and just getting better each game," said Shmyr, "The coaches have confidence in me if I'm playing in those roles.  I just have to prove to them that I can stay in those roles and contribute to the team."

  The Wheat Kings went 0-for-12 with the man advantage last weekend, but the club did spend time in practice on the power-play this week.

  Brandon is back in action Friday night, hosting the Calgary Hitmen (7:30 p.m., Westman Communications Group Place).

  It'll mark the season debut for John Quenneville and the home season debut for Jayce Hawryluk, a pair of fourth-year forwards that are likely playing their final seasons of junior hockey.

  "Three years has flown by.  You look back on it and just seems like yesterday that I was coming to camp...it goes by super quick and I'm going to enjoy this year," said Hawryluk, "We've got a good group of guys here.  We're just going to try and stay healthy...we've got the team to do it, so we just have to put the work forward every day."

  Friday's game is not only a rematch of last spring's Eastern Conference Final but is also a matchup between the #1 and #4 ranked teams in the Canadian Hockey League.

Chaff...Tim McGauley (shoulder) is listed as week-to-week on the WHL's injury report and isn't expected to play this weekend...Brandon defenceman Kale Clague was rated an A prospect (1st round potential) and Wheat Kings' forward Tanner Kaspick a C prospect (4th, 5th or 6th round potential) in the NHL Central Scouting Service's preliminary Players to Watch list that was released earlier this week...Friday night is Manitoba Hydro Fridge Magnet Giveaway night, with the first 2,500 fans attending Friday's game receiving a Wheat Kings' 2015-16 Fridge Magnet Schedule.

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