Calgary, AB – The Calgary Mustangs have acquired forward Cole Basnett and goalie Ben Howard from the Okotoks Oilers, in a trade that sent forward Louis Jamernik down south.
Basnett, who stands 6’2”, brings some playoff experience to the Stangs. In addition to 48 regular season games in which he scored 7 goals and dished out 12 assists, Basnett played in 8 playoff games with Okotoks last year, including 2 AJHL Final games against Spruce Grove. This was effectively Basnett’s first year in the AJHL, as he spent 2 games as an affiliate with the Oilers after playing for Northern Alberta X-Treme Prep in the CSSHL, where he tallied 31 points in 29 games.
Howard went an impressive 22-3-0 last year, with a .911 save percentage and a 2.33 Goals Against Average, good for fifth-best among AJHL goalies who played at least 10 games last year. Last year was also Howard’s debut season in this league, having spent 2016-17 as part of the AAA Flames in the AMHL.
"The Mustangs are continually building our team culture around good character people and today we feel we have added to that," says Head Coach and GM Tyler Drader, who has commented in the past about the importance of adding players from winning teams onto the franchise.
"One thing we identified after last season was we were a little undersized and we have been searching for a big power forward and Cole helps address that need. He's a good team guy that plays a 200-foot game. We expect Cole to play a big role on our team for years to come."
"Everyone knows the goaltending position is the most important position in hockey. With Howard we are getting an excellent goaltender that has proven he can play in the league, posting great numbers as a 17-year old. He's big, calm, a fierce competitor with great character. We're excited to add him."
On behalf of the Mustangs, we’d like to welcome Ben and Cole to the organization!
You can catch Stangs’ preseason action starting August 28th in Olds, and running through September 9th at Father David Bauer Olympic Arena where the Mustangs host the crosstown rival Canucks. Select Mustangs preseason games will be broadcast on MixLR.com, so be sure to check out the league schedule available at AJHL.ca and stay tuned for more details.
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