The NHL dreams of 36 young Manitobans got one step closer when they were selected in the Western Hockey League bantam draft on May 2. All players born in 1998 were eligible to be selected by the junior league, whose graduates account for about 20% of all NHLers.
Half of the Manitoba contingent was from Winnipeg and surrounding area, including five players in the first two rounds. The top local pick was forward Nolan Patrick, who went fourth overall to the Brandon Wheat Kings. Defenceman Liam Schioler of West St. Paul went 28th overall to the Regina Pats, while forward Vince Loschiavo was picked by the Kootenay Ice at No. 31. Goalie Ryan Kubic went 39th to the Vancouver Giants and forward Dawson Martin was the 40th pick overall by the Calgary Hitmen.
The other Winnipeg draftees were Scott Mickoski, Kevin Jakisch, Dylan Thiessen, Nicholas Labossiere, Ryan Hall, Linden McCorrister, Conner Barley, Josh Curtis, Nathan Halvorsen, Connor Bowey, Garrett Kuklica, Eric Lavoie and Ryan Sokoloski.
The "Hoop and the Harm" charity basketball game, played last week at Murdoch MacKay Collegiate, was an overwhelming success.
The brain child of Alex Meseman and Chris Fossen, the game raised more than $2,500 for the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Manitoba. Meseman, a former varsity basketball player at the school, and Fossen, the team’s current coach, had hopes to raise $1,000 at the inaugural event, which featured this year’s varsity boys Clansmen team taking on an alumni squad.
This spring’s registration deadline is approaching for the Winnipeg Touch Football League, which has been around since 1974.
The league includes two women’s divisions, which play on Tuesday and Thursday nights, a men’s division, which plays on Mondays and Wednesdays, and a Sunday afternoon co-ed league.
The league bills itself as a fun and competitive sport that focuses on the passing component of football. Games are one-hand touch, so contact is kept to a minimum.
The deadline to sign up is May 17, with games starting in June. For more info, visit www.wtfl.ca
Who said tennis was an individual sport? Certainly not the folks at Tennis Manitoba.
The organization is launching the Manitoba Team Tennis League this summer, and is looking for players.
The league will run on Fridays from the middle of June through the end of July.
Teams of four to six men, women and/or juniors will compete in one of four divisions based on skill level.
Matches will be played on courts throughout the city, with the finals scheduled for July 26 to 28 at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club in Wildwood Park.
The competition will have a Davis Cup format, with four singles and one doubles match used to determine a winner.
For more details, visit www.tennismanitoba.com/leagues