CeeBees host­ing ex­hi­bi­tion on Satur­day

Per­re­nial hockey pow­er­house look­ing to re­gain Herder supremacy

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE -

The Con­cep­tion Bay CeeBees se­nior hockey team will play host to the Mount Pearl Blades in an ex­hi­bi­tion game at the S.W. Moores Me­mo­rial Sta­dium in Har­bour Grace on Satur­day. Team of­fi­cials have high hopes for the 2010-11 cam­paign, and have their sights set on bring­ing an­other Herder Me­mo­rial Tro­phy back home to the re­gion.

Af­ter los­ing their sec­ond Herder in a row last year, the Con­cep­tion Bay CeeBee Stars say they are de­ter­mined not to let that hap­pen again this sea­son.

“No ques­tion,” vows CeeBees’ cap­tain Matthew Thomey. “Our goal this year from Day 1 is to bring the Herder back home.”

The Stars will be­gin tun­ing up for the up­com­ing sea­son on Satur­day, Oct. 16 at the S.W. Moores Me­mo­rial Sta­dium when they host an ex­hi­bi­tion game against the Mount Pearl H. J. Bartlett Elec­tric Blades, a team that has gar­nered some in­ter­est be­cause of some off-sea­son ad­di­tions.

The un­der­dog CeeBees elim­i­nated the South­ern Shore Break­ers to take the Avalon East Se­nior Hockey League ti­tle last sea­son and go all the way to the Herder fi­nals for a record sixth straight time.

But in the pro­vin­cial se­nior hockey fi­nals, the Clarenville Cari­bous tram­pled the CeeBees to take the Herder in five games — tak­ing some of the shine off the Stars’ sea­son. That left “a sour taste in the mouth of many of the Con­cep­tion Bay CeeBee Stars,” ac­cord­ing to the team cap­tain. The out­come of last year’s fi­nals, “ has made the Stars more de­ter­mined than ever to re­gain New­found­land’s top hockey prize.”

In­stead of just fine-tun­ing their line-up in the off-sea­son, the CeeBees have reloaded their ros­ter in an at­tempt to bring the Herder back to Con­cep­tion Bay North.

Lo­cal tal­ent

“Rather than look­ing out­side their home re­gion to bring in play­ers, as is the case with many other se­nior hockey teams,” Thomey says, “ for the most part, the CeeBees have re­cruited within the Con­cep­tion Bay area for new play­ers this year. We’ve stocked up on some of the best lo­cal tal­ent avail­able in an at­tempt to put our­selves back among the prov­ince’s elite teams.”

Keith and Ryan De­laney of North River head the list of play­ers from C.B.N. who are suit­ing up for the Stars this sea­son. Join­ing them on the ice will be Bran­don and Cody Roach, Matthew French, Paul Brown, Bron­son Dawe and Chris Cros­bie, all of Bay Roberts; Matthew Thomey, Daniel Sparkes and Tommy Snow of Har­bour Grace; Steven Gree­ley, Up­per Is­land Cove; Chad Par­sons, Shearstown, and Chris Pet­ten, Port de Grave. For­mer St. John’s Fog Devils’ cap­tain Scott Bro­phy and Chris Bartlett are other key off-sea­son sign­ings for the CeeBees.

“ Lack of lead­er­ship won’t be a prob­lem for the Stars, with no less than three for­mer cap­tains suit­ing up for the red, white and blue this year,” the cap­tain noted. “ Keith De­laney, Bartlett, and Cros­bie have all re­turned to the CeeBees’ fold af­ter some time away from the team,” he added.

Ac­cord­ing to Thomey, “this wealth of ex­pe­ri­ence will ben­e­fit the team, as you can never have too many guys like these fel­las who have played in big games be­fore”. The cap­tain feels the team “will be strong on both sides of the puck and our depth should be one of our biggest as­sets.”

Fans will see what the team spokesman de­scribes as “a mod­est in­crease in ticket prices this sea­son — ad­mis­sion will be $10 for adults and $6 for chil­dren. As in past years, fans will be given the op­por­tu­nity to pur­chase sea­son tick­ets.”

CeeBees’ coach Ian Moores ex­plains, “this ex­tra rev­enue is nec­es­sary be­cause if we want to make a se­ri­ous run for the Herder, we need to put a prod­uct on the ice that can com­pete with the West Coast teams, which have much big­ger op­er­at­ing bud­gets.”

Ac­cord­ing to the team cap­tain, many fans ex­pect Mount Pearl to chal­lenge C.B.N. for the Avalon East ti­tle this sea­son.

“ The Blades have the same goals as us this year and we ex­pect some good bat­tles with them,” Thomey con­tends.

Dur­ing the off-sea­son Mount Pearl signed the fa­ther and son duo of Randy and An­drew Pearcey, both Herder win­ners with the Clarenville Cari­bous last sea­son. The se­nior Pearcey will take over the coach­ing reins with the Blades, while An­drew is ex­pected to put up big of­fen­sive num­bers this sea­son.

For­mer NHLer Terry Ryan has also re­turned to his home­town to suit up for Mount Pearl this sea­son, along with Grant Kenny and Ja­son Hedges.

The CeeBees are ten­ta­tively sched­uled to kick off the reg­u­lar sea­son Oct. 23, when they host archri­val South­ern Shore Break­ers on home ice at the S. W. Moores Me­mo­rial Sta­dium in Har­bour Grace.

CeeBee Stars’ cap­tain Matthew Thomey vows, “our goal this year from day one is to bring the Herder back home.”

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