Goalie Matteo Paler-Chow was acquired by the Trail Smoke Eaters on Friday, while Trail forward Liam Freeborn was sent to the Surrey Eagles along with Kieran O’Hearn in exchange for veteran d-man Cody Schiavon. Jim Bailey photo.

Trail Smoke Eaters fill void in the crease and add top defenceman

Trail Smoke Eaters make two big but necessary moves, adding a veteran goalie and defender to the mix

The Trail Smoke Eaters were busy this week, and bolstered a back end that was already pretty good.

With the imminent return of captain Philippe Lapointe and defenceman Trevor Isaksson, the Smoke Eaters needed to trim their roster and also find a goalie to help out Logan Terness.

Trail acquired 20-year-old veteran netminder Matteo Paler-Chow from the Powell River Kings on Friday and announced the addition of high-end defenceman Cody Schiavon, 19, from the Surrey Eagles on Thursday.

Paler-Chow has backstopped the Kings since the 2017-18 season and took the Kings to the BCHL semifinals in 2018 putting up a 2.43 GAA and a 0.925 save percentage.

In exchange, Trail sent defenceman Jordan Hendry to Powell River.

Paler-Chow became available after the Kings acquired the services of another veteran goalie, Derek Krall, from the Penticton Vees earlier this week.

Paler-Chow played in 16 games this season, with a 6-8 record, a 3.68 goals-against average and .872 SP. Unspectacular numbers, but his wealth of experience and a change of scenery may help the Vancouver native form a dynamic tandem in net with Trail rookie goalie Logan Terness, and solidify the back end for the Smokies following the departure of Donovan Buskey.

“The addition of Matteo Paler-Crow gives us immediate stability at the goaltending position after Donovan Buskey left our team earlier this week,” said Jeff Tambellini in a release. “Matteo is a proven BCHL goalie who has an outstanding playoff record over the past two seasons. Most importantly, he is young man who wants to be in the city of Trail and is willing to do whatever he can to help our team win. Matteo and Logan Terness will be a great duo and our staff has full confidence that either goalie can steal us a game on any given nigh

Schiavon, a veteran of the BCHL, comes to Trail after spending the last two season with the Surrey Eagles, where he was an assistant captain last year and the team’s captain this year.

The Smoke Eaters traded forward Liam Freeborn and defenceman Kieran O’Hearn to the Eagles for the veteran d-man and also acquired the CJHL playing rights of Justyn Gurney, who is currently playing in the WHL with the Everett Silvertips.

Schiavon, a right shot defenceman, is one of the most dynamic two-way defenceman in the BCHL and brings with him an NCAA commitment to Yale University for the 2020-21 season.

“The addition of Cody Schiavon drastically changes our defence core,” added Tambellini. “Cody is one of the most dynamic two-way defencemen in the BCHL this season and brings an offensive skill set with his speed and play-making ability. Cody possesses a competitiveness and toughness that has him atop the league leaders in fights and penalty minutes. Finally, what we’re most excited about is we are adding a BCHL captain to our dressing room and a player with family ties to our great city of Trail.”

Schiavon and Paler-Chow will join the Smoke Eaters in West Kelowna on Friday when they play the Warriors. Trail returns home on Saturday for the final leg of the home-and-home against West K, with the puck drop at 7 p.m.

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