Scrimmage this afternoon, first game Thursday in Truro
© Darrell Cole - Amherst News
Amherst CIBC Wood Gundy Ramblers coach Jim Bottomley talks to players during the club's first on-ice session on Monday.
AMHERST – Fourty-four player who hope to members of the Amherst CIBC Wood Gundy Ramblers hit the ice at the Amherst Stadium for the first time Monday morning.
"It's a good session with a lot of intensity," Ramblers' coach Jim Bottomley said. "I wanted the guys to do from the very beginning that this will be a team that works hard every night. It's something that we want to get into their mind in training camp. Those that don't accept that will be the ones that don't stick around."
The Ramblers, who lost in the Bent Division final in six games to the eventually Fred Page Cup champion Truro Bearcats, are expected to be solid in goal and on defence this season. Both Chase Marchand and Richard Tingley are back in camp between the pipes along with five returning defenceman.
Jamie Bishop is looking forward to his third season with the club.
"It's great to be back with the guys. Summer break was good but I'm excited to be back," Bishop said. "I think we have the best defensive group if we come to play every night. We just have to make a few additions up front and we'll be a hard hockey club to play against."
Bottomley said he was impressed with some of the younger players in camp and expects a few surprises up front. He will also be looking to make a few moves heading into the opening of the regular season on Sept. 13 against the Valley Wildcats.
The home opener is Sept. 14 against Woostock.
The Ramblers open their exhibition schedule on Thursday in Truro before returning to the stadium on Saturday to host the Bearcats at 7 p.m.