BCHL Today: Coquitlam ranked #3 in Canada, Cents forward Tkac to play World Juniors, and more

Coquitlam holds third spot in CJHL Top 20 rankings

For the second straight week, the Coquitlam Express are the third ranked team in the country. The final CJHL Top 20 rankings of 2019 were released on Monday, with the Express holding steady at #3. Coquitlam is the lone BCHL among the Top 20, although the Penticton Vees received an honourable mention.

Cents forward Tkac to play at World Juniors

Merritt Centennials forward Daniel Tkac is the lone BCHL player to take part in the 2020 World Junior Hockey Championship after being named to the Slovakian team. Tkac, 19, has 8 goals and 15 points in 29 games with the Centennials in 2019-20. He was invited to tryout for Slovakia earlier this month. The World Juniors start on Boxing Day.

Cents forward Buono named BCHL Player of the Week

After putting up 5 goals and 1 assist in three games, Merritt Centennials forward Christian Buono was named BCHL Player of the Week on Monday. Buono has 30 points in 38 games this season split between Merritt and Powell River.

Express forward Lapointe commits to St. Lawrence

Coquitlam Express rookie forward Greg Lapointe secured his post-junior hockey career with the commitment to St. Lawrence University. Lapointe has 19 goals and 16 assists in 36 games for the Express this season, which is tops on the team. There’s no word what season Lapointe will start at St. Lawrence.

Express goaltender Watson off to RPI

Coquitlam Express goaltender Jack Watson is the 12th member of the team’s roster to commit to an NCAA school. Watson will attend Rochester Polytechnic Institute once the 19-year-old’s junior hockey career is over. He is 7-2 this season with a 2.46 goals-against-average and an .898 save percentage as the back-up to Clay Stevenson.

Clippers make Naylor’s promotion to VP official

The Nanaimo Clippers formally announced the promotion of head coach Darren Naylor to the role of vice-president on Monday. The Clippers announced last week that Director of Business Operations Tali Campbell has taken over as general manager from Naylor as he adds the VP job to his plate.

Former Vernon and Merritt blueliner Mick hired by NCDC team

Troy Mick (a former defenceman for Vernon and Merritt from 1984-86) has been hired by the Philadelphia Hockey Club as GM of its National Collegiate Development Conference Junior A Tier 2 team and the Head Coach for its 16U teams. Mick has served as head coach and GM for both Vernon and Salmon Arm in the BCHL, as well as head coach for both Tri-City and Kamloops in the WHL.

BCHL Trade Tracker (since Dec. 1)

Trades Made: 4
Trades Made Within BCHL: 3
Trades Made With Teams Outside BC: 1
Players: 6
Future Considerations: 3
Forwards: 4
Defencemen: 2
Goaltenders: 0
1999-born: 0
2000-born: 5
2001-born: 1
2002-born: 0
2003-born: 0