The Portage Terriers have five players and a coach attending this year's MJHL-SJHL showcase in Winnipeg. The rosters were announced on Tuesday, January 16th, on the MJHL's website. The representatives are captain Tayem Gislason, his partner on defence Parker Scherr, forward standouts Slade Stanick and Nolan Nenow, and Owen Witt will be manning the blueline for the 18-and-under team. Assistant coach Robby Moar will also be behind the bench for the 20-and-under team wearing red.
Gislason says it's nice to be honoured with a selection.
"Yeah, it was cool to be recognized as one of the better defensemen in the league. I'm excited to go play with some different guys and play some guys I've never played against before, it should be cool."
First-year Terriers Nenow and Witt both expressed excitement about playing in the showcase.
Nenow explained, "I'm excited for the whole experience, honestly. Slade, Gis(Gislason), Parker - they're all great players and everything. It's going to be awesome to play with new players, too, so no matter what happens at the showcase, it will be fun."
Witt is the only Terrier on his squad and notes he's intrigued about who he'll be playing with at the event, having spent nearly the entire season on a line with his defensive partner, Grant Dardis.
"It'll be good. I'm not sure who I'll be playing with, but we'll work it out and it will work."
Slade Stanick shared his thoughts on heading to Winnipeg, playing in front of a bunch of scouts and with guys he knows but has never played with.
"It's awesome, obviously, it's a big showcase, lots of scouts there, so it'll be fun. I know a lot of the guys on my team, so it'll be a fun experience." Stanick adds, "Obviously, it's not super easy playing with new guys, but everyone should get along pretty well, so I think we'll be fine."
Parker Scherr spoke about his experience with the event from last year, and what makes him excited for this year.
"It was awesome. I was there last year and it was a great experience, so it's obviously very exciting and it's a[n] honour to be a part of that group there, because there's a lot of great players, a lot of great talent."
Assistant coach Robby Moar will be coaching with Justin Falk, former NHLer and head coach of the Winkler Flyers, as well as Alex Manodlidis, head coach of the Winnipeg Blues. He says he hopes the players enjoy it, but also put their best foot forward at the showcase.
"Yeah, I'm excited, but I'm more excited to see what the guys on our team can do. It's not just an all-star game. There's that rivalry with Saskatchewan where you want to go and you want to beat them." Moar also emphasized his goal is to help the players show the scouts in attendance what their strengths are. "As exciting as it is for the guys to go, I'm hoping they go and they perform well."
The showcase starts January 30th, with the first game starting at noon.