Wheat Kings duo sharing draft dream
By the nature of being teammates, players share most everything together; the highs, the lows and everything in between.
Such is true for Brandon Wheat Kings duo John Quenneville and Jayce Hawryluk and come June, they’ll have the opportunity to share another special experience — the NHL Draft.
Hawryluk and Quenneville have been key cogs in the Wheat King offense this year, wrapping up the season as the leading and third leading scorers respectively. Hawryluk, the higher scorer of the two, healthily surpassed his goal, assist and point total from a year previous with 24 goals, 40 assists for 64 points in just 59 games.
The gifted 17-year-old has flashed dynamic ability at times this year, forcing his way onto the radar of scouts. Hawryluk’s blend of skill and hard work has particularly impressing Future Considerations head WHL scout Zenon Herasymiuk.
“An energetic and dynamic forward with a good motor, Hawryluk has the ability to be a game breaker,” Herasymiuk said. “While not the biggest player, he makes his presence felt with aggression on the forecheck and quickness in his hands and feet.”
Consistency is, however, still a bit of a work in progress with Hawryluk.
“One would like to see a bit more shift-to-shift consistency in his ability to distribute the puck and avoiding turnovers in the middle of the ice,” Herasymiuk said. “But when he does put all his skills together, Hawryluk can be the most dangerous player on the surface.”
As Herasymiuk mentions, Hawryluk isn’t the biggest of skaters, standing a fair five-foot-10, 186 pounds but uses his size — ironically — to his advantage by ducking in and out of traffic, finding himself in prime scoring areas.
A shifty scorer in his own right, Quenneville blew his totals from last season out of the water in 2013-14 with 25 goals and 58 points in 60 games after just 19 points in 12/13.
The equally talented Quenneville did like his teammate – and often linemate – in meandering his way onto the radar of scouts and into discussions centered around rising prospects. The diligent and responsible center has Herasymiuk quite content with his ability and promise.
“He’s an industrial forward that has the ability to create offense from below the goal line while displaying good open ice skills.” said Herasymiuk. “He’s a solid skater that uses his balance and wide shoulders to fend off opponents and he has a deceivingly hard shot on both the forehand and backhand.”
Quenneville strives to be an effective three zone hockey player, but still lacks all the refined tools needed to do so.
“He will definitely need to work on his foot speed while continuing to develop his effectiveness as a 200-foot player,” added Herasymiuk.
Hawryluk and Quenneville have steadily climbed Future Considerations’ rankings for the 2014 NHL Draft, currently resting at (83rd) and (53rd) overall respectively as of March.
Their journey will culminate into a few minutes they will never forget, when they hear their names called — likely not too far apart — in Philadelphia this June.