Pat PaytonSports Editor
Wolf Imrich doesn't appear to be in Stratford Cullitons' 2010-11 plans.
The 18-year goaltender attended the Tribe's spring camp over Victoria Day weekend at the Allman Arena, after flying in from Austria one week earlier. Imrich's father lives in Woodstock.
Cullitons are "in the market" for a netminder with last year's back-up, Cody Vinnai, heading to Brock University and Thorold area this fall. Jason Lott, the Tribe's director of hockey operations, is hoping to trade the Brantford native to a Golden Horseshoe Conference team this summer.
"We haven't made a decision on (Imrich), but we're probably leaning against going with Wolf," Lott told the Gazette last week. "It's very risky for us to go in that direction.
"We could be spending a fair bit of money, and a lot of time and effort, and Hockey Canada could just say no. It could leave us hanging, so we decided it wouldn't be the best way for us to go.
"We're leaning towards going with a local goalie to back up Evan (Groenestege)," he added.Imrich was a member of a high-level Junior team in Austria, and he was also on Austria's Under-18 squad at the world championships.
Groenestege, meanwhile, is one of 10 players who the Cullitons have signed to date. The 20-year-old from Wartburg is returning to the Tribe for his third season, and will be one of the top goalies in the Midwestern Conference.
Other players signed include: defencemen Tyson Avery, Jordan Currie and Ryan Cigile, and forwards Brock Reynolds, Chett Binning, Brendan Nicholson, Myles Melchers, Mitch McCrank and John Doyle.
Four signed at spring camp
Currie, 17, Cigile, 18, McCrank, 17, and Doyle, 18, were all signed at the Cullitons' spring camp. Cigile hails from Michigan and played for the Plymouth high school last winter.Lott was also waiting to hear how centre Cohen Adair and defenceman Craig Dalrymple made out this past weekend. The two veterans skated with Powell River of the British Columbia Tier II Jr. A League (BCHL). The pair, who were key players on the Stratford powerplay this past season, finished among the top four in team scoring.
"I'm hearing that we're not the only ones in this boat," Lott says. "I've heard that Cambridge has lost two players to B.C. and one to Kingston of the (Ontario) Provincial Tier II Jr. A., and Waterloo is losing quite a few guys.
"But hopefully, by this time next week, we'll have a few more players added to our list," he added.
Rex fired by Eagles The Brantford Expositor newspaper reports that Scott Rex, the most successful coach in Brantford Golden Eagles franchise history, has been fired.
Rex, who guided Eagles to the Sutherland Cup provincial Jr. B hockey title in 2009 and a runner-up finish in 2010, was informed of the decision on May 30.
Brantford GM Mike Bullard will take over as the team's bench boss.
"We're changing our whole outlook of our team," Bullard told the Expositor. "We're going to knock our budget right down and we're going to go a little younger."
Rex, a former Culliton, compiled an overall record of 116 wins, 25 losses and nine overtime losses for a winning percentage of .773.
In the Expositor story, Bullard said one of his top priorities will be the fitness of the players.
"I've met with the owners over the last six weeks and they're giving me the chance to run everything," Bullard said.
"We want to give younger kids an opportunity to come in and play. We want to give these kids a chance right from the start."
Bullard also announced that the Eagles will play eight to 10 Midwestern Conference games in nearby Ohsweken next season. It's apparently due to a lack of ice time in Brantford.