The Penticton Vees Hockey Club announced Wednesday the structure of the team’s coaching staff ahead of the 2021/22 season.
Returning for his 15th season at the helm of the Vees will be President, General Manager and Head Coach Fred Harbinson. Coming off of a 18-1-0-1 record in the Penticton Pod of the 2020/21 season, the Vees finished in top spot in the BC Hockey League. Under Harbinson’s watch in Penticton, the Vees have posted a record of 562-163-15-38-4 including four Fred Page Cup championships, five BCHL Interior Division championships, a Doyle Cup championship, a Western Canada Cup championship, and an RBC Cup National Championship during in 2012.
Back for his 8th season with the program is Assistant Coach and Assistant General Manager Steve Cawley, who oversees the team’s scouting and recruiting departments. Assistant Coach Patrick Sexton returns behind the bench for his 3rd season with the club, responsible for running the defence and penalty killing. Video Coach Matt Miller will also return to the fold for his 7th season with the team while Goaltending Coach Jesse Plewis comes back for his 6th season with the club.
Assistant Coach Matt Fraser returns for his 6th season with the team and will be moving into a more specialized role for the upcoming season, working full time with the team as the program’s Skill Development and Strength & Conditioning Coach. Ed Lebler will continue with the Vees in an Advisory Role, working with the club for the past 15 seasons.
A new addition to the staff this season as an Assistant Coach will be 15-year professional Cam Barker, who recently retired from playing and suits up for his first season of coaching. The Winnipeg, Manitoba native played in 310 National Hockey League games between 8 seasons and 4 different teams, including the Chicago Blackhawks, Minnesota Wild, Edmonton Oilers and Vancouver Canucks. The 3rd overall pick in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft is also a two-time World Junior Hockey Championship gold medalist as well as a Spengler Cup winner in 2012/13 and winning the French Championship in his final season of professional hockey in 2020/21.
“I have been extremely fortunate over the years to have a dedicated and experienced support staff,” stated President, General Manager and Head Coach Fred Harbinson, “This upcoming season, I feel as though we have a strong a staff as we have ever assembled.”
“I have always believed that continuity in our staff has played a major role in our success on and off the ice,” Harbinson continued, “In addition, I believe we have a staff that will give everything they have into developing our players as individuals and help us achieve our goal of bringing another championship to Penticton.”
The 2021/22 season will see fans back in the building to cheer on their favourite team and there is plenty of ways to get in on the action, including with a season ticket membership. Contact Vees Director of Ticketing and Merchandise Laura Carleton for more information about season tickets today! The Vees open their season with a matchup against the Vernon Vipers on Friday, October 8th at the South Okanagan Events Centre.