AMHERST – The Amherst Ramblers have moved to fill an offensive void by picking up a pair of players from the Summerside Western Capitals in a trade on Wednesday.
The Ramblers have acquired forwards Ben Berisha and Brock Morrison from the Caps in return for the rights to Mitch Maynard and a third-round pick in next spring’s Maritime Hockey League draft.
“Both players are proven scorers in this league and will help us replace some of the offence we lost at the end of last season,” Ramblers’ coach Jim Bottomley said. “We lost six guys to graduation and it’s nice to get some of that offence back.”
Amherst also receives Summerside’s fourth-round pick next year and future considerations.
Morrison, who Summerside acquired from Yarmouth last season, had 13 goals and 15 assists in 40 games while Berisha, who has major junior hockey experience, had 13 goals and 23 assists in 50 games.
Maynard, whom the Ramblers acquired in a deal with the Pictou Weeks Crushers two years ago, had 11 goals and 20 assists in 49 games with the Crushers during the 2009-10 season before making the jump to the Shawinigan Cataractes, where he won a Memorial Cup last season.
“We would have liked to keep him in Amherst, but he is studying engineering and plans to enroll at UPEI,” Bottomley said.
With training camp set to open on Aug. 27, Bottomley is looking to make several other moves.
Jeff Krichew will not be returning to the club this season. He is attending St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish. Krichew had a goal and seven assists for the Ramblers last season as a rookie.
On the coaching front, Bottomley said Tim Ripley has decided to return as an assistant coach after announcing his retirement at the conclusion of last season. As well, Jamie Matthews will be joining the coaching staff as an assistant coach.
Bottomley is still looking for a third assistant coach.