Merritt BC – The 2017-18 BCHL season was definitely a ride for the Merritt Centennials, starting off the season 0-6-0-0 and picking up their first win of the regular season on September 27 when they downed the Surrey Eagles 2-1 in front of a hometown crowd. With the win against the Eagles it kicked off a three game winning streak for the Centennials, the next two wins coming against the Cowichan Valley Capitals and the Prince George Spruce Kings.
In October the Centennials started showing a little bit more consistency with the team having a record of 4-2-2-. Goaltender Jacob Berger started nine of the teams 10 games racking up an incredible 321 saves while sporting a .915 save percentage and earning himself a Player Of The Week from the BCHL in that month.
Goaltender Austin Roden played 29 regular season wins after the Centennials picked him up from the Nanaimo Clippers after a season ending injury to Vincent Duplessis in September. Roden picked up 12 wins, 11 losses and three ties while sporting a .931 save percentage. Roden also picked up two shutouts this season. Berger finished the season with a record of 13 wins and 24 losses while getting himself a .905 save percentage.
Veteran and one of the seven graduating Centennial players this season, Henry Cleghorn finished as the teams leading scorer, having 20 goals and 28 assists for 48 points in 57 regular season games. Rookie Brendan Schneider led the rookies with 16 goals and 20 assists. Zachary Zorn also had 20 goals along with Cleghorn but earning himself 22 assists.
The post season didn’t go the way the Centennials wanted going 0-4 against the Wenatchee Wild for a first round exit.
The Centennials finished the season with a record of 24-27-5-2 and finishing sixth out of seventh in the Interior Division.
The Centennials have seven graduating players this season, Zach Zorn, Chase Bell, Henry Cleghorn, Zach Court (University of Alaska, Anchorage), Zach Risteau (St. Lawrence University), Tyrell Buckley (Michigan Tech University), and Jacob Berger (Minnesota State University, Mankato).