The Trail Smoke Eaters have reached into their own backyard, hiring former Castlegar and Creston Valley head coach Brent Heaven as the team's new assistant.
Heaven spent one year with the Thunder Cats, posting a 30-17-0-5 record after a five-year stint in Castlegar that included three as head coach. He was named the KIJHL Neil Murdoch division Coach of the Year in 2010 with the Rebels and has also spent time with the major midget Kootenay Ice.
The full release from the team was put out yesterday and is available here.
To hear head coach Bill Birks' thoughts on the move, click here.
For Heaven's take on moving up to the BCHL, click here.
The comment from Birks that stuck out most to me was Heaven's dedication. Brent was the head coach in Castlegar when I started volunteering with the team and even as a newbie it seemed apparent that he was well-liked by his players. He was also noticeably present and active in Trail's main training camp last season and coached several Smokies APs including 16 year-old blueliner Dane Birks.
New Commits: Trail has added three new names to the new recruit roster for next season. '95-born forward Anthony Conti and '95-born goaltender Braden Krogfoss both come from the successful Vancouver Northwest Giants program. Conti put up 30 points (11-19) last season and was a Coquitlam Express AP, while Krogfoss posted a 1.47 GAA. Also new is Ontario forward Bryce Knapp ('94) who scored 52 (27-25) points and was captain of his midget AAA team in Thunder Bay last season.