Vipers Add Experience To Blueline With Return Of Veres Plus Niagara Ice Dogs Draft Pick – by C. Scott Holland
The LaSalle Vipers gained experience on their blue line with the signing of defenceman Ryan Sarris, head coach and general manager Bill Bowler announced Tuesday.
“We think this is a real big addition for our team,” Bowler says. “We’re hoping to resurrect his game a bit, things haven’t gone his way the last couple of years due to some injuries. We’re hoping the Vipers can do for him what we’ve done for some other players and help them move on in their hockey career.”
Sarris, 18, is from Brooklin, Ont. and has played the past two seasons for the Whitby Fury, of the Ontario Junior Hockey League. He has accumulated six points and 74 penalty minutes in 36 career games for the Fury.
“I’m a physical, two-way player,” Sarris says. “I’m hoping to click with the team. I’ve got a lot of experience.”
He previously played for the Thorold Blackhawks of the GOJHL and suited up for two games with the OHL’s Niagara IceDogs, who selected him in the third round of the 2013 OHL Priority Selection.
The 6’, 195 pound defenseman played his minor hockey for the Whitby Wildcats along with current Vipers defenceman Matthew Doucette.
“(Doucette) was my defence partner for most of it,” he says.
Sarris is expected to make his Vipers debut Wednesday night when the Vipers host the Lambton Shores Predators. He will be wearing jersey number 17.
The Vipers will also welcome back captain Nathan Veres, who makes his 2015-16 home ice debut after suffering a broken collarbone days before the home opener.
Veres’ veteran experience and leadership will be a key factor in the Vipers’ stretch run. He is among the top 10 GOJHL defensemen as far as career numbers go and his presence will be a huge boost to LaSalle.
“That’s huge, that changes things,” Bowler says. “There’ll be an adjustment period, but we’re obviously happy to have them both helping us move forward.”
Game time is 7 pm. Tickets are available one hour before puck drop ($9 adults, $7 students/seniors, children six and under get in free).
(photo credit – Jeff Blay)