Saturday , 24 July 2021

Pontiacs add two players, trade Morrow at AJHL trade deadline

The Pontiacs celebrate one of their eight goals against the Drayton Valley Thunder on Tuesday night. Image provided by http://gamereadyphotography.com

The Bonnyville Pontiacs made some roster adjustments before the AJHL’s trade deadline yesterday.

The Yaks shipped out centre Brendan Morrow for Calgary Canucks defenseman Jackson Hogg.

In 19 games this year, Morrow registered 10 points.

He found himself on the outside looking in this year at times because of the Pontiacs forward depth. Hogg has one point and 63 penalty minutes in 37 games.

“We knew with Brendan Morrow looking to get a different situation, a fresh start, that we needed to add a forward, especially with Isaac Saniga being out with an upper-body injury…so a forward was pretty important for us.,” said coach Rick Swan about the moves.

The Pontiacs did just that by adding forward Scott McKenzie, who was released from the Canucks. McKenzie has 21 points in forty games this season.

“We got a chance to get a really hard-nosed, tough, physical kid to play against and that was Jackson Hogg. So with Jackson Hogg and Scott McKenzie that brought us two really eager kids that want a fresh start as well after the Calgary Canucks. We think they’ll add some speed, and some enthusiasm and some excitement just knowing they’re coming to a contending team,” he said.

As a consequence, defenseman Cody Lehner has been moved back to the triple-A midget Notre Dame Hounds to balance the roster.

“We think ultimately at the end of the day Cody gets a win-win situation because he gets more opportunity to play and goes to a place where he’s familiar and comfortable with. Brendan Morrow gets his request, a bigger role, a top-6 role with the Calgary Canucks since that’s what he was looking for,” said Swan.

Tough mini-road swing for Pontiacs

The Pontiacs will face the Drumheller Dragons (24-14-2) and Brooks Bandits (37-3-0) on their mini two-game road trip this weekend. Both teams beat the Yaks in their only matchups this season at the R.J. Lalonde arena.

Isaac Saniga is experiencing concussion-like symptoms after the game against Drayton Valley on Tuesday, which the Pontiacs won 8-3. He did not make the trip to Drumheller for tonight’s game.

After the Pontiacs 8-3 win over the Drayton Valley Thunder, coach Rick Swan is optimistic. The team rolled the lines and had seven different goal scorers.

“We needed that game and I think going into Drumheller, a tough, tough place to play, and Brooks, they’re undefeated at home, gives us a real big test this weekend,” said Swan.

The Pontiacs (29-9-2) are locked with the Sherwood Park Crusaders (29-8-2) for first in the North Division at 60 points.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.