Draft Diaries with Logan Stankoven: My WHL Season and the U18s

Jeff Rea

2021-07-15

Feature image courtesy of Andrew Armstrong

 

I got in six games with Kamloops and eight at the U18s, including the exhibition game. That’s fourteen games total this season.

 

MY DRAFT YEAR

Team-wise, we didn’t really know what to expect. 

 

We felt we had a young team this year, in Kamloops. We had a couple of good returning guys, like Zary and Centazzo. Onyebuchi on the back end. Me and Bankier were returning as well, besides that though we were one of the teams that had the most rookies in the league. 

 

We didn’t expect to win a bunch of games. But for the short stint that I had, you could just tell that those younger guys coming up really knew what the league was about. We learn from each other, that was the biggest thing. We made sure that we were prepared for the season. 

 

Some guys come into the WHL and know it’s gonna be a fast league, but once they hit the ice that’s when they really find out how fast it is, how quickly things can happen, and how skilled you have to be to have success in the league. I tried to really help out the younger guys so that they could all do a job and contribute to our team.

 

Giants 7-3 W (one goal, one assist, GWG)

We scored just off the bat. I wasn’t playing with Zary and Centazzo to start the game, I was put on the right wing for that first shift, to get some energy going. The puck dropped and we went into our zone. We chipped it out and I ended up grabbing the puck, coming into their zone, and dropped it off to Zary. Zary went back-door and found Onyebuchi. It was 31 seconds into the season. It was a good start for us. The Giants had a pretty good team this year. That start we had really helped. 

 

I scored on the power play. I made a seam pass to Zary. He faked the shot. The seam opened right back up for me. He slid it right through the seam and I basically just put it into the wide-open net.

 

Prince George 5-4 W (two goals, GWG)

It was our second game in back-to-back nights. They ended up going up 3-1 after one in that one, and we just kind of clawed our way back into the game. I think I had a couple goals that game. The first one was right off the bat. I just came off the bench and our Dman really made a nice play up the ice. He took it behind the net and found me in the slot. The second one was the game-winning goal, with just under ten to go. We had some good sustained zone time. One of their Dmen tried to clear it out and fanned on it. One of our guys grabbed it, took it to the net and just kinda slid it to me.

 

After starting the season with back-to-back wins on back-to-back nights, the Blazers had four nights rest. They hosted Prince George on Thursday, at the Sandman Center, but Stankoven was not in the lineup. The Blazers would pick up a 6-1 win, moving to 3-0. It was in stark contrast to the disastrous start to Logan’s rookie season, where the Blazers stumbled out the gates 0-3. Two nights later, Logan returned to the lineup.

 

Victoria 4-3 (OT W) 2 goals, 2 ass