Thursday, 10 December 2015

Erkamps Becoming Mr.300 Friday

Macoy Erkamps
  It'll be a milestone game for Wheat Kings' captain Macoy Erkamps on Friday night.

  Erkamps will play his 300th career Western Hockey League game, and it'll come against his former team in the Lethbridge Hurricanes (7:30 p.m., Westman Communications Group Place).

  "I've been lucky enough to stay healthy throughout my career," said Erkamps on Thursday, "I think it's significant in that I'm playing my old team and, hopefully, we can get the win out of it."

  For the record, Erkamps played his first WHL game in the Hurricanes' season-opener in Medicine Hat on September 24, 2011 -- a 4-2 Lethbridge victory.

  He recorded his first career WHL point in his third game on September 30, 2011, scored his first career WHL goal October 7, 2011 in Regina and got in his first career WHL fight October 21, 2011 (against Kamloops F J.C. Lipon).

  Things didn't necessarily end well with the 'Canes for Erkamps, who asked for a trade and stay home in advance of the 2014-2015 season.

  Eventually, he was acquired by the Wheat Kings as part of a six-player deal with Lethbridge.

  "They've changed that whole organization around and I'm really happy for them," said Erkamps, who played , "I'm glad to see they're making steps in the right direction."

  Erkamps and the rest of the Wheat Kings' blueline will be seeing some extra minutes tonight.

  Stalwart Ivan Provorov left Thursday for the Russian Junior Team's training camp ahead of the World Junior Hockey Championship.

  "I think all of our defence have to be ready to step up here," said Erkamps, "Ivan is a huge part of this team, offensively and defensively, he just brings a presence to the ice.  We're going to have to bring it without him."

  Jayce Hawryluk and John Quenneville are also away at the Canadian Junior team's camp while, on the injury front, goaltender Logan Thompson is day-to-day with an upper body injury; forward Stelio Mattheos won't play this weekend because of an upper body and defenceman Colton Waltz missed practice Thursday but is expected to play this weekend.

Chaff...the Wheat Kings will make a special present to Erkamps before Friday's contest to recognize his 300th career game...a victory for Brandon Friday would move them past idle Prince Albert and into sole possession of first-place in the East Division for the first time this season...Friday's game is the first of three straight home games for the Wheat Kings, who host Kelowna on Saturday and Kamloops on Wednesday...Saturday's game against the defending WHL Champions will feature the Annual Shoppers Mall Teddy Bear Toss, in support of the Local Christmas Cheer Board.

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