Powell River Kings offseason primer

The Powell River Kings have their off-season cut out for them. After not qualifying for the playoffs, the Kings need to rebuild their team.

Powell River has already started recruiting players for next season and so far, they’ve added three forwards and one defender. These new Kings are filling spots left by departing players. Here’s a list of graduated players and eligible returnees.

As for the new players, they all come from schools with hockey programs and three of them came from the same school in Minnesota.

For this article, I will profile these four players and talk about several returning players as well. Before that, I’ll quickly profile the upcoming 2022-23 Kings season.

Key season dates

Powell River’s season opens with back-to-back home games. On Sept. 23 and 24, the Kings host the Nanaimo Clippers. Powell River’s first road trip is from Sept. 30 to Oct 1. For those days, the Kings have stops in Nanaimo and Alberni Valley.

Powell River’s final home game is Mar. 18 and it’s the end of a two-game set against the Cowichan Valley Capitals. The Kings’ last game is on the road against the Coquitlam Express on Mar. 26.

On Oct. 21 and 22, Powell River travels to the Kootenays. There, it plays against the Trail Smoke Eaters and Cranbrook Bucks.

Then, on Remembrance Day, Powell River plays its only game in Salmon Arm while on Nov. 26, the Kings host the BCHL champion Penticton Vees.

Merritt and the Kings lock horns on Dec. 2 in Powell River and Vernon travels to the Sunshine Coast on Feb. 17. The Kings make the lock trek to Prince George for a game on Feb. 24.

New Kings

Powell River’s first new player is forward Marcus Dashevsky. Dashevsky is a product of St. George’s School of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League. He’s spent the last five seasons with the St. George’s hockey program. During the 2021-22 season, Dashevsky played 36 games for the U18 Prep team, scoring 12 goals and 21 assists.

The next recruit is from Shattuck’s St. Mary’s Prep School. Noah Eyre spent three seasons at the Fairbault, MN school. Before that, he played for the Pittsburgh Penguins Elite 14U team and the Washington Little Caps 13U team. Last season, Eyre played 53 games and scored 16 goals and 22 assists.

The next recruit from Shattuck St. Mary’s is Anthony Yu, who spent four seasons at the school. Before that, he played for the Los Angeles Jr. Kings AAA program.

Last season, Yu played 55 games for SSM’s U18 team and tallied 23 goals and 46 assists. He also played one game for the North American Hockey League’s St. Cloud Norsemen and notched an assist.

The final recruit from Shattuck is Will Jones, who, like Yu, spent the last four seasons at the school. Before that, he played one season for the Nashville Jr. Predators. Last season, Yu played 55 games with the SSM 18U Prep team and totaled two goals and 32 assists.

In late June, the Kings recruited defender Caleb Bentham from the South Island Royals AAA U18 program. In 35 games last season, Bentham put up five goals and 17 assists.

Returning Kings

The first eligible returnee I will profile is forward Anthony Lucarelli, who had the third-best point total of all Kings’ players last season.

In 51 games, Lucarelli scored 14 goals and 14 assists. He has two more seasons of junior hockey before aging out.

Casey Aman is the next returnee to profile. He had the highest point total of all defenders on Powell River. In 54 games last season, Aman posted seven goals and 20 assists. Like Lucarelli, Aman is eligible for two more seasons of junior hockey.

Lucarelli and Aman will be among the veterans when the new players arrive and some of the leaders on next year’s roster. To get out of the Coastal Conference basement, the Kings will need everyone to potentially punch above their weight for next season.