Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Lakers eyeing bid to host Cup

The Fort Frances Lakers may get a chance to enjoy the comforts of home at this time next year—and also be assured of getting within one step of playing for a national title.
At the Lakers’ “Recognition Night” held Tuesday at the Copper River Inn, president Milt Strachan confirmed the team seriously is considering the opportunity to host the 2015 Dudley Hewitt Cup (the Central Canadian junior ‘A’ hockey championship).

“It’s the SIJHL’s turn to host and Thunder Bay did it the last time around in 2012,” noted Strachan.
“We’ve basically been told if we want it, it’s ours.”
Strachan said team executives met Monday to discuss the situation, and that it now boils down to dollars and good sense.
“The league will hold its annual general meeting in early June and there’s going to be a cost set for hosting such an event that will be the standard from now on,” he explained.
“If the price comes in at around $70,000, we can probably handle that,” Strachan noted.
“If it’s around $105,000, we’ll have to think carefully about it.”
The SIJHL champion Lakers finished third at this year’s Dudley Hewitt Cup, which was held in Wellington (near Belleville).
In other news, Patrick Sofer will continue his puck pursuits close to his hometown.
The 20-year-old Chicago native, one of six Lakers ineligible to return next season due to age restrictions, committed yesterday to play this fall for the Aurora (Ill.) University Spartans, which will join the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association for the 2014-15 campaign.
Sofer, who served as Lakers’ captain for most of the season before giving way to Cody Wickstrom prior to the start of the SIJHL final, had 13 goals and 21 assists in 48 games during the regular season.
He added five assists in 12 games during the playoffs.
In two seasons with the Lakers, Sofer netted 26 goals and added 38 assists in 96 regular-season games, with one goal and eight assists in 25 playoff ones.
“Patrick has skated as a Laker for the past two seasons and will be a big hole for us to fill in our roster come next season,” admitted head coach and general manager Wayne Strachan.
“We wish Patrick the best of luck in school and hockey, and all his future endeavours.”

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