Capitals' GM disappointed to lose pair during expansion draft

Jason Simmonds
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Summerside Western Capitals

SUMMERSIDE – The Summerside Western Capitals lost two players Tuesday in the Maritime Junior Hockey League expansion draft.

The St. Stephen County Aces from New Brunswick selected forwards David Sweet and Alex Gallant. Capitals general manager Pat McIver was disappointed to lose both players.

Sweet, who has one year of junior A eligibility remaining and is from Dunstable, Mass., played in 20 regular-season games with the Capitals last season. He registered four goals, four assists and 10 penalty minutes.

"I love Sweeter," said McIver. "He was a hard-worker, a gritty player, had a good shot and is a good kid.

"At the end of the day, we went in protecting our young kids. We have a plan for the team for the next two or three years, and couldn't risk losing our young guys for a one-year player."

Gallant, who is from Stratford, recorded 14 goals, 19 assists and 73 penalty minutes in 20 games with the Montague Maniacs of the Island Junior Hockey League (IJHL). He has three years of junior A eligibility remaining.

"The unfortunate thing right now is that we are so deep up front that we had no guarantees for Gallant in our lineup this year," said McIver. "I'm not saying he wouldn't have made our team, because I think he would have had a good chance at making the team (in training camp)."

The Aces also took forward Benji Gaudet, of Tignish, after he was left unprotected by the Miramichi Timberwolves.

Gaudet played last season with the Arsenault's Fish Mart Western Red Wings of the IJHL.

In 17 games with the Abram-Village-based Red Wings, Gaudet picked up 21 points - seven goals and 14 assists - and 49 penalty minutes.

The league's annual general meeting will be held at the Quality Inn in Summerside on Friday morning, and the draft is scheduled for Credit Union Place on Saturday at 1 p.m.

Organizations: Capitals, Island Junior Hockey League, Maritime Junior Hockey League Red Wings Quality Inn Credit Union Place

Geographic location: SUMMERSIDE, New Brunswick, Dunstable, Mass. Stratford Tignish Abram-Village

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