Kudos to Kam River; SI playoffs begin


By
March 28, 2022

The newest active team in the Superior International Jr. Hockey League will go into the playoffs as the no. 1 seed. In its first full season of existence, the Kam River Fighting Walleye splashed a record of 35-7-2 and a winning percentage of .818 to finish atop the SIJHL’s regular season standings.

Kam River and the second seed Red Lake Miners (28-6-3, .797 winning percentage) will get opening round playoffs byes and subsequent berths into the semi-finals while the league’s other four teams will face off in a pair of best-of-five quarter-final sets.

Fighting Walleye general manager Kevin McCallum, who is the chief engineer of the Kam River building project, gave well deserved props to his team.

“We are extremely proud of this accomplishment for our organization,” McCallum told Hockey News North. “I couldn’t be more proud of our team. There is the ability of our coaching staff to take 24 individuals and turn them into a solid group of hard working young men willing to go the the extra mile for their teammates. Our hockey operations staff did a great job bringing in players willing to do what it takes to be successful.

“We enjoyed the success (of finishing first) for a day as we know we haven’t finished anything yet. Whoever we play in the playoffs will come at us hard and we can’t take any team for granted. The playoffs is an entirely different beast and we look forward to seeing how in all unfolds,” McCallum added.

ROUND ONE

Third seed Dryden Ice Dogs (26-15-4, .622 winning percentage) will face sixth place Fort Frances Lakers (5-35-1, .134 winning percentage) and fourth ranked Thunder Bay North Stars (21-16-4, .561 winning percentage) will meet up with fifth spot Wisconsin Lumberjacks (16-25-2, .395 winning percentage) in best-of-five series that will begin on Tuesday in the home rink of the highest seed.

Follow Hockey News North for information and insight throughout the SIJHL playoffs.

Six last-year players of the Kam River Fighting Walleye are, left to right, Kersey Reich, Zach Fortin, Dayton Clarke, Austin Madge, Alex Enegren and Christian Veneruzzo. Also in photo are Fighting Walleye general manager Kevin (Smiley) McCallum and head coach Matt Valley.

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