McColgan Signing + NHL Draft Rankings

Photo: Cherie Morgan

Photo: Cherie Morgan

The Big news on the weekend was the Vees signing overage forward Shane McColgan for the remainder of the season. McColgan, who’s 21 (New Year’s day baby), started this season with the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL, before having his playing rights traded to Lethbridge. The forward decided that Penticton was the spot for him and was officially signed late Friday night.

The Manhattan Beach, California native was limited to just 10 games this season with the Winterhawks, as he was working through off-season surgery. Don’t let his numbers with Portland fool you, McColgan is a dynamic offensive talent, as he’s averaged nearly a point per-game in his five-year WHL career (McColgan stats). He has the ability to be a game-breaker, a guy who can go out and score or setup that one extra goal that can be a difference between a win and loss. That’s critical this time of year when the games get tougher and goals are harder to come by. McColgan also brings plenty of experience, playoff experience more importantly.

He’s played in nearly 300 regular season games in the WHL but also has played in 34 playoff games; that’s nearly 60 percent of a BCHL regular season schedule. He won a WHL championship as a 15-year-old call-up in 2009 with the Kelowna Rockets and has been a part of two Memorial Cup teams. He went to the 2009 Memorial Cup with Kelowna and was a member of the Memorial Cup host Saskatoon Blades last season. That’s two Memorial Cups, a WHL championship and 34 career playoff games; that type of experience is invaluable. With McColgan and Erik Benoit, the Vees have added two ex-WHL’ers who have two WHL championships and three Memorial Cup Appearances between them. When you want to win in the playoffs, you do so with veterans and guys with plenty experience; McColgan brings both.

McColgan took to the ice for the first time as a Vee this afternoon and in a short practice he skated on a line with Nic Pierog and Brad McClure. This new-look first line boast two players in the top three in league goal-scoring and now a point-per game guy from the WHL. Impressive no doubt. But more importantly, McColgan is another weapon for the opposition to worry about and adds more layers to the Vees upfront. Depth is also critical for a long playoff run and his addition shuffles the deck  but in a way that should give the Vees an advantage in the match-up game. His experience and accolades reads like a laundry list but more importantly he can be that ‘X’ factor the Vees were looking for.

McColgan will make his debut on Wednesday when the Vees face the West Kelowna Warriors and will wear number 84. For the entire story on McColgan, follow the link to the Vees website for the story (CLICK HERE).

To make room for McColgan, the Vees moved fellow overager Blake Butzow  to the Cowichan Valley Capitals for future considerations. Butzow, a stay-at-home defenseman, had a goal and an assist in 16 games with the Vees. “Butzie” was a very popular guy in the dressing room and was great in the community. I always enjoyed being around Blake, as he always had a smile on his face and seemed to always make you laugh. He’ll be a great fit in Cowichan Valley, with the size and experience he brings to a younger Caps team trying to hang on to the fourth and final playoff spot in the Island Division.

Switching gears, three current Vees were part of 10 BCHL players that cracked NHL Central Scouting’s Mid-Term Draft Rankings. Throw in recruit Warren Foegele and four Vees cracked the Mid-Term rankings. Hunter Miska, Brett Beauvais, Jack Ramsey and Foegele all made the cut; Foegele is the highest ranked coming in a 62nd.

Speaking of Foegele, he was the feature in TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie’s latest article on TSN.ca ( Read McKenzie’s article HERE).

Here’s the Vees Press Release:

Penticton Vees goalie Hunter Miska, defenseman Brett Beauvais, forward Jack Ramsey and committed recruit Warren Foegele were listed in NHL Central Scouting’s Mid-Term Rankings, ahead of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.

Miska is currently ranked 32nd amongst North American goalies and is one of only two BCHL goaltenders to crack the list. The Stacey, Minnesota product is 13-3-2-3 so far this season and is second in goals-against average (2.27) and fifth in save-percentage (.917) in the BCHL. Miska 3-1-1-0 in his last five starts and has stopped 66 of the last 68 shots he’s faced.

Beauvais is currently ranked 134th amongst North American skaters and is the highest ranked BCHL defenseman. The Summerside, PEI product leads all BCHL defensemen in scoring, and is eighth overall in the BCHL scoring race, with 10 goals and 49 points; 15 points better than the second-highest scoring defenseman. Beauvais is also second in the BCHL in assists with 39, just three back of the league leader. Beauvais is committed to Bemidji State University for next season.

Ramsey is currently ranked 151st amongst North American skaters and is 3rd amongst BCHL forwards. The Chanhassen, Minnesota product is second in Rookie scoring on the Vees with seven goals and 18 points and has a goal and three points in his last five games; Ramsey is committed to the University of Minnesota.

Foegele is currently ranked 62nd amongst North American skaters and is the highest ranked prep school player in Canada; third highest amongst North American skaters. The Markham, Ontario product currently plays for the Varsity squad at St. Andrew’s College in Aurora, Ontario. Foegele leads the Varsity team in scoring, with 29 goals and 56 points in just 26 games. Foegele is committed to the University of New Hampshire for 2015.

The NHL Entry Draft takes place June 27th-28th at the Wells Fargo Centre in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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About CBeauchemin

Director of Broadcasting & Communication for the Penticton Vees
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