Fort Frances Lakers’ head coach and general manager Wayne Strachan wanted to make it a priority to add more local talent to the roster this off-season in order to generate more interest in the team from the community.
After bringing in locals Brett and Nick Hahkala, Colton Bodnar, Noah Loveday, and Cole Allan last month, Strachan continued the trend of adding familiar faces last week with the signings of goalie Matt Booth and forward Jake Clendenning from the Kenora Thistles of the Manitoba ‘AAA’ Midget League.
Booth suited up in 21 games for the Thistles last season, where he compiled a 4.74 GAA and .871 save percentage.
The former Muskie also started in two games for the Lakers last season as an affiliate player, recording a 3.55 GAA and .905 save percentage.
“Matt played in two regular-season games last year and was solid for us,” noted Strachan.
“He is very athletic, quick in the net, and battles hard to make saves.
“He will be a guy who works hard every day and pushes to better himself, and his counterpart, in the net for us this season,” he added.
Clendenning, meanwhile, skated in 88 games over two seasons for the Thistles, racking up five goals and 16 assists along with 98 penalty minutes.
“Jake is a big, strong player that skates well and can play centre or wing,” Strachan said of the 6’1″, 165-pound former Muskie.
“He will bring an aggressive style to our team and is a guy who can kill penalties.
“We are pleased to have Jake join the lineup,” he enthused.