BCHL Today: Martino to jump from Chilliwack to the USHL? Canada clubs Switzerland at World Juniors, Newton transfers to Merrimack, and more


Report: Martino set to join Omaha Lancers

According to a report from The Hockey News senior writer Ryan Kennedy, 2002-born forward Ayrton Martino of the Chilliwack Chiefs will join the Omaha Lancers of the US Hockey League.

Martino, a native of Toronto, led the Chiefs in scoring during the 2020-21 BCHL training season with a goal and nine assists in eight games.

The Clarkson University commit for Sept. 2021 was acquired by Chilliwack in June from the St. Michael’s Buzzers of the Ontario Junior Hockey League.

In 2019-20, he was third in OJHL scoring with 79 points in 48 games for the Buzzers.

Newhook and Canada improve to 3-0 at World Juniors

Forward Alex Newhook (60 goals, 108 assists in 98 games with Victoria from 2017-19) had a pair of assists and four shots on goal in Canada’s 10-0 drubbing of Switzerland on Tuesday at the 2021 World Junior Hockey Championship.

Chilliwack Chiefs forward Ray Fust finished the night with three shots on goal and a -1 plus-minus rating for Switzerland. Penticton Vees forward Stefano Bottini wasn’t dressed for the Swiss club.

The win improves Canada to 3-0 in preliminary round play at the tournament. Its next game is Thursday against Finland.

Switzerland’s next match-up is against Germany on Wednesday.

Newton transfers from UAF to Merrimack

Forward Max Newton (47 goals, 76 assists in 153 games with Trail and Cowichan Valley from 2014-17) has transferred from the University of Alaska-Fairbanks to Merrimack College for the winter term.

The 23-year-old from Vancouver, BC had 18 goals and 25 assists in 93 games with the Nanooks over the last three seasons.

Desharnais inks ECHL deal with Wichita

Defenseman Vincent Desharnais (one goal, four assists in 54 games with Chilliwack in 2014-15) signed a contract for 2020-21 with the Wichita Thunder of the ECHL.

Desharnais, who’s from Laval, Quebec, had 13 assists in 31 games with the Thunder in 2019-20. The 24-year-old also went scoreless in six American Hockey League games with the Bakersfield Condors.

Scarfo signs contract with Wheeling

Forward Ryan Scarfo (17 goals, 31 assists in 50 games with Powell River in 2013-14) has signed a contract with the ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers for the 2020-21 season.

The 26-year-old from North Chelmsford, Massachusetts signed with Reading of the ECHL in November, before the Royals took a hiatus for the season due to COVID-19.

Scarfo had 26 points in 43 ECHL games with the Wheeling in 2019-20. He also posted three points in 12 AHL games with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.

McNicholas released by Utah

Forward Michael McNicholas (33 goals, 68 assists in 91 games with Nanaimo and Vernon from 2012-14) has been released by the ECHL’s Utah Grizzlies after posting one goal in two games this season.

The 26-year-old Reno, Nevada native signed a contract extension with the Maine Mariners of the ECHL back in July, but the team wound up taking a hiatus because of the pandemic.

McNicholas had 24 goals and 67 assists in 125 games with the Mariners over the last two seasons.