Harrison gets Warriors C

The West Kelowna Warriors didn't waste any time identifying their leaders.

On the first day of training camp Monday, head coach Brandon West named three-quarters of the team's leadership group.

Defenceman Jake Harrison, who has returned to the club after a year in the United States Hockey League, has been installed as the club's captain for the 2019-2020 season.

Harrison is the last remaining holdover from the Warriors 2016 RBC Cup championship team.

Returning veterans Parm Dhaliwal and Lucas Cullen will serve as two of three three alternates.

West says he will wait to see which of the remaining hopefuls seizes a leadership opportunity before naming a third alternate.

Meantime, 40 players hit the ice Monday morning at Royal LePage Place as the Warriors opened camp ahead of its 14th BC Hockey League season.

Much of the focus of the first three days of camp, prior to Wednesday's pre-season opener, will be spent getting to know each other, more than on specific systems.

"We want to give everybody an opportunity to settle in, and get the summer rust off," said West.

"They have been doing individual skill work all summer, so we want to put them in a team atmosphere. We want to get the guys back into hockey mode."

It's also an opportunity to teach.

"We want to introduce our concepts and the way we want to play.

"It;s basic structure. We'll introduce some forechecks and d-zone coverage.

"How we want to play with the puck, and more importantly, how we want to play without the puck."

West will get a chance to see a lot of his younger players in game situations Wednesday when  the Warriors kick-off the exhibition season against the Penticton Vees at Royal LePage Place.

A few veterans may be sprinkled in Friday when the Salmon Arm Silverbacks come to town.

The Warriors will play six pre-season games before their home opener Friday, Sept. 6 against the Vernon Vipers.

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