Dragons show ‘em what they got at pre­sea­son camp

The Drumheller Mail - - SPORTS - Kyle Smylie The Drumheller Mail sub­mit­ted

Dragons staff say their 2016-17 squad showed up in shape at the club’s main camp over the week­end, where play­ers were eval­u­ated in fit­ness test­ing and their first prac­tice of the sea­son.

All 36 play­ers turned out for the camp at the Drumheller Me­mo­rial Arena, with vet­eran play­ers Kar­tusch, Burghardt, Dykema, Ro­chowiak, Many Guns, and Tschumi, meet­ing the many new, young play­ers penned into the lineup for ex­hi­bi­tion play this Septem­ber.

Head coach Brian Cur­ran liked what he saw from the play­ers he and his scouting staff had been se­lect­ing the past few months.

“The play­ers all im­proved im­mensely from their last test­ing, which def­i­nitely made the coach­ing staff happy... Th­ese kids pushed them­selves hard and as you watched you knew they were pre­pared,” he said.

Af­ter test­ing on Fri­day morn­ing, the play­ers hit the ice for their first prac­tice be­fore re­group­ing for an in­ter­squad game that even­ing.

“The game was very com­pet­i­tive and for a first game it was quite phys­i­cal. It was a lit­tle scram­bly at times but the boys worked hard and af­ter an in­tense morn­ing and af­ter­noon I was pleased that not one of them took a shift off,” said Cur­ran.

On Satur­day and Sun­day the play­ers met the Dragons’ new off-ice train­ing pro­gram, nearly two hours of in­tense fit­ness, and re­gard­less of how the sea­son plays out in the win col­umn, Cur­ran said the play­ers will be in shape.

“No mat­ter what hap­pens this year, our play­ers will be in great shape this sea­son.”

“I think our scouting staff did a great job and al­though we are a young team, our vet­er­ans showed a lot of lead­er­ship and led their teams in a solid bat­tle for their first week­end to­gether,” said Cur­ran. “Over­all the camp went re­ally well, and we are all look­ing for­ward to an ex­cit­ing sea­son that our fans and com­mu­nity can en­joy.”

Fol­low­ing the week­end the Dragons made some ros­ter cuts, and are now prep­ping for the an­nual AJHL ex­hi­bi­tion tour­na­ment on Wed­nes­day, Au­gust 31 in Oko­toks. Af­ter the tour­na­ment, man­age­ment will drop the ros­ter down to the 25 in time for ex­hi­bi­tion games for the up­com­ing sea­son.

The club’s first home ex­hi­bi­tion game is against Lloy­d­min­is­ter on Septem­ber 9.

Lo­cally Owned and Op­er­ated by Greg and Sum­mer Manca

Drumheller Dragons play­ers un­der­go­ing fit­ness test­ing with man­age­ment at their pre­sea­son camp over the week­end. The club made some ros­ter cuts fol- low­ing the week­end and will be in Oko­toks Wed­nes­day for the an­nual AJHL ex­hi­bi­tion show­case.

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