Keefe reflects on the Lumber Kings' preseason 0
Pembroke Lumber Kings coach and GM Sheldon Keefe
The Pembroke Lumber Kings are heading into the first weekend of the regular season with 25 players on their roster.
Although this is more than the coaching staff anticipated starting the season with, the number has been dictated by a number of circumstances, including injuries and the return of players from camps with Major Junior hockey teams, according to Kings’ coach and general manager Sheldon Keefe.
On Monday local prospects Blake Lemoine of Pembroke and Jared Steege of Cobden were the latest cuts from the team.
More than two weeks after training camp started, Keefe is pleased with the team’s starting position, particularly with the skill level. With the youth of the team he feels it has great potential beyond this season.
“Our goal of the summer was improving our team and addressing some needs, with our eye on restocking with some younger kids,” he said before practice Tuesday afternoon. “We will see how things come together, but we are confident our team will improve. The players will get better, but we will also be looking for ways to tinker with the lineup if everyone is not able to grow and develop at the same level.”
With so many new players to the organization, from true rookies to players acquired in the off season, he is also happy with how the team has gelled thus far. He believes the new approach of having a week of practice before the first exhibition game was beneficial and allowed the players to spend more time together and begin forming a bond.
While Kings were 5-0 in preseason action, that is all erased when the regular season starts Saturday.
Tina Peplinskie is a Daily Observer multimedia