He’s big, he’s talented and he’s the new captain of the Victoria Grizzlies.
Defenceman Zach Urban, 19, stands 6’3″ and weighs 205 lbs.
He’s coming from the national champion Penticton Vees to join the Grizzlies as the team’s first Bill Bestwick-era captain.
Through 58 regular season games and 15 postseason outings last season, Urban chalked up four goals and 18 assists, along with 88 penalty minutes.
General manager and head coach Bestwick said the team is moving forward and building up talent. He expects Urban to be a defensive stalwart on the team, along with a leader.
“He comes to us knowing what it takes to be a champion,” Bestwick said, “knowing what hard work and dedication and commitment is required to be successful at this level.”
The Vees set league records for wins (54) and coconsecutive wins (42) last season.
Urban, born in Alberta, has lived in Kelowna since he was 14 and is excited for both the move to the Victoria area and to the Grizzlies.
“I’m just going to try to bring my best foot forward. I’m going to have to lead by example being captain,” Urban said. “I’m really excited, I think we have a great group of kids coming in that I think, if we gel properly, we’re going to have a really successful year.”
Along with Urban, defenceman D.J. Jones, 20, is also coming from Penticton in trade for Alex Holland.
Forward Brett Hartskamp is also becoming a Grizzly after being acquired from the Swan Valley Stampeders Hockey Club out of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League.
Forward Turner Lawson, 19, has been acquired from the Vernon Vipers. Goaltender Brady Rouleau and forward Garrett Skrbich are also joining the team in a multi-player deal with the Westside Warriors.
Training camp begins Aug. 20, with the team’s first exhibition game scheduled for Aug. 24 at home against the Cowichan Valley Capitals.
For information on tickets, visit Victoriagrizzlies.com or call 250-385-1555.