The Manitoba Junior Hockey League club opened the preseason by hosting the Estevan Bruins of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League. The visitors triumphed on Sept. 10, 4-3.
After the Empire-Advance deadline, the Oil Caps were to play a rookie game in Portage on Tuesday. On Friday, they are in Estevan. The team’s exhibition season wraps up with the Dauphin Kings visiting on Saturday and the Portage Terriers on Monday.
Of course, the exhibition season is leading up to the 2023-2024 MJHL campaign. The Oil Caps open the regular season with a rematch of the 2023 finals as the defending champion Steinbach Pistons visit on Sept. 22.
In front of 475 fans at the Tundra Oil & Gas Place on Sunday, the Oil Caps deployed a mix of veterans and newcomers as they took on the Bruins. Estevan led 1-0 and 4-2 at the intermissions.
Returning players Ethan Guthrie, a Brandon defenceman, and Layton Veitch, a forward from Rivers, scored for Virden along with newcomer Nash Henwood of Brandon. Veteran hometown goalie Eric Reid made 25 saves for the Oil Caps. New forwards Noel Englot of Candiac, Sask. and Winnipeg’s Aiden Wuerfel each had two assists.
Trotter Joins Staff
The Oil Capitals have added ex-pro Brock Trotter to its staff as a part-time assistant coach. The Brandon product had a long pro career that included a stint in the NHL with the Montreal Canadiens. Trotter spent time playing overseas. He was in the MJHL with the Dauphin Kings and played for the University of Denver at the NCAA Division I level.
Brett Braybrook and Curtis Brolund also serve as assistant coaches. Ryan Potter is the team’s goaltending coach.