Vees add veteran defencemen to blue line

PENTICTON, B.C. – The Penticton Vees are pleased to announce the commitments of defencemen, Leon Matthiasson (’03) and Brock Reinhart (’04) for the 2023-24 season.

“Last season our defence core was a major factor in breaking the all-time B.C. Hockey League (BCHL) record for goals against. The addition of these two veteran defencemen will allow us to construct a solid back end once again,” commented Vees’ President, General Manager, and Head Coach, Fred Harbinson.

Matthiasson comes to Penticton after playing last season for the Växjö Lakers’ junior team in the Swedish J20 Nationell. The Swedish defenceman tallied 25 points (8G, 17A) in 39 regular season games, as he finished fourth in team scoring. Prior to playing for the Lakers, Matthiasson played for the Malmo Redhawks in the 2021-22 season, and posted 12 points (0G, 12A) in 19 games. The 6’1, 187-pound defenceman played his minor hockey in the Redhawks youth program.

“It’s going to be a real pleasure playing for the Penticton Vees. I’m really excited to get the season going. Hopefully I can bring my best version across to North America to help the Vees achieve the three-peat,” said Matthiasson.

Matthiasson is the Vees’ first non-North American signing, following the BCHL’s new roster rules ahead of the 2023-24 season.

Reinhart, 18, joins the Vees after playing the last two seasons with the Elmira Sugar Kings in the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League (GOJHL). The Elora, ON, product was the top scoring defenceman on the Sugar Kings, as he had 37 points (7G, 30A) in in 49 regular season games. Reinhart posted an additional 8 points (3G, 5A) in 11 playoff games. The 6’3, 190-pound defender compiled 49 points (8G, 41A) in 86 career regular season games in the GOJHL.

“I’m excited to join such an incredible organization and community. Can’t wait to get to Penticton and defend our title,” commented Reinhart.

The Vees organization would like to welcome Leon and Brock to Penticton and the South Okanagan.