The Trail Smoke Eaters made some key veteran additions to their lineup this week.
Trail announced the signing of 19-year-old defenceman Jeremy Smith from the Ontario Junior Hockey League’s Toronto Jr. Canadiens and forward Hayden Rowan, also 19, from the Sioux City Musketeers of the United States Hockey League (USHL).
The Smokies acquired the five-foot-10, 185-pound Smith in exchange for future considerations. The Toronto native is a smooth skating, intelligent and mature player that boasts a huge offensive upside. The feisty blueliner tallied eight goals and 33 points in 33 games last season with the Jr. Canadiens and earned 61 pims.
Head coach, Jeff Tambellini was pleased to be able to secure a defenceman of Smith’s caliber.
“We are extremely excited to add Jeremy to our roster,” Tambellini said in a release. “He is a highly competitive offensive-defenceman, who will add leadership and experience to our defensive group.”
With the unplanned departure of 17-year-old, six-foot-six d-man Ethan Martini to the Central Illinois Flying Aces of the USHL and the early exit of third-round Detroit Red Wings draft pick, Seth Barton, to University of Massachusetts-Lowell, the Smoke Eaters back end needed some bolstering.
“We believe Jeremy’s ability to mix high-end skill with an aggressive desire to defend will allow him to play in all situations for our team,” added Tambellini.
Rowan is a Pemberville, Ohio product and committed to attend Yale University after next season. In 46 games with Sioux City, Rowan tallied two goals and 10 points. The previous season, Rowan skated with the Johnstown Tomahawks of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) where he compiled 45 points in 57 games as a seventeen-year-old rookie.
“Our staff is very excited to add Hayden Rowen to the Trail Smoke Eaters,” said Tambellini. “Hayden is a complete player who can play anywhere in our lineup.”
The addition of Rowan should prove a welcome addition to the leadership group and a strong veteran presence for the many young commitments coming to Trail.
“He’ll add a great deal of experience and leadership to our group,” said Tambellini. “We look forward to continue building Hayden’s game and preparing him for an exciting transition to Yale the following season.”