The A&W Bears have finalized their roster and are preparing for their pre-season tournament against the PWM Lloydminster Steelers and Manitoba’s Norman Wild this weekend.
“We have finalized our roster but we’re keeping a few players for the pre-season here,” said coach Jeff Willoughby.
The Bears have 20 players confirmed for their 2014-15 roster, however they’ve kept six extra players from the fall training camp.
“I think they just showed a lot of promise at camp,” Willoughby said. “We did take players that were the same age as them, we feel that they can be part of our team in the future.”
He added that if the team could take 26 players, he would have included all of them.
“We just see them as part of our future, hopefully they’ll stay with our program here.”
The Bears roster for the 2014-15 season is as follows: defense -- Hannah Koroll, Cassidy Carlson, Jordan Ashe, Brooke Hobson, Breanne Neudorf, Morgan Willoughby; forwards -- Jayda Sachs, Brooklyn Hopkins, Jaci Weigers, Faith Volk, Ireland South, Sierra Parenteau, Katie Chickowski, Marlee Clarkson, Madison Casavant, Reigann McAuley, Ty Lindsay, Jessica Lutz; goalies -- Jessica Vance and Shayla Youngman.
Pre-season players include Ryan Fontaine, Brooke Hausermann, Abby Soyko and Dana Wood.
With 12 veteran players on the ice, Willoughby is looking forward to the tournament this weekend.
On the ice, the team plans to work on team systems and playing different combinations on the defensive line.
The Bears take on the Steelers and the Norman Wild this weekend at the Art Hauser Centre. The Bears face the Lloydminster Steelers at 9 a.m. and the Norman Wild at 7 p.m. on Saturday.
The Bears will play the Norman Wild once more at noon and the Steelers at 3 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free for all games.
The Bears’ next pre-season game will be a home-at-home series against the Saskatoon Stars on Sept. 13 and Sept. 14.
“We’re excited to get going and I guess we’ll just take one pre-season game at a time,” he said.