Brandon, MB. — The hockey season will continue for at least two members of the Western Hockey League’s Brandon Wheat Kings.
Wheat Kings coach and general manager Kelly McCrimmon has announced that 17-year old center John Quenneville will play for Team Canada at the 2014 Under 18 World Championship, scheduled to begin this coming week in Lapeenranta and Imatra, Finland. Captain Ryan Pulock meanwhile is on his way to the New York Islander’s American Hockey League affiliate – the Bridgeport Sound Tigers.
A 4-year WHL veteran, the 6’1″ 218 lb. Pulock was the Islanders first round selection (15th overall) in last June’s NHL Draft. He finished his Wheat Kings’ career by scoring a franchise record 64 goals and 210 points in 261 games.
A 3-time winner of the Wheat Kings’ Top Defenceman Trophy, this year’s Meighen Haddad & Co. Most Valuable Player finished second in team scoring this past season with 23 goals and 63 points in 66 games. The Sound Tigers are currently sitting in fourth place in the North East Division with a record of 27-37-2-5.
A 6’1″ 186lb Edmonton native, Quenneville led the Wheat Kings in playoff scoring this year with five goals and thirteen points in nine games.
A former third round draft choice (54th overall) of the Wheat Kings in the 2011 WHL Bantam Draft, Quenneville just completed his second full season with Brandon.
After scoring eight goals and 19 points in 47 games during his rookie year in 2012-13, Quenneville finished fourth in team scoring in 2013-14 with 58 points, including 25 goals in 61 games.
This won’t be his first taste of international hockey as he skated with Team Pacific at last year’s World Under 17 Challenge in Quebec.
While Quenneville has been added to the Canadian roster, Brandon’s regular season scoring champion Jayce Hawryluk remains under consideration for the national team. The 5’10” 190 lb. Roblin native, who led the Wheat Kings with 24 goals and 64 points in 59 games this past season remains under consideration, pending a doctors report early this week.
A member of the Canadian team that won the Gold Medal at the prestigious Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament in the Czech Republic last summer, Hawryluk was unable to play in game five of the Wheat Kings second round series against the Oil Kings in Edmonton on Friday. A second round bantam draft pick of the Wheat Kings, Hawryluk scored five goals and 12 points in eight playoff games this spring.
Canada is the defending champion at the world championship, having won its third gold medal last year in Sochi, Russia. Canada will play a pre-tournament game Monday against Denmark, before opening up the tournament on Thursday against Sweden.
Team Canada dropped a 3-2 decision to Finland in an exhibition game earlier today.