By Carter Brooks
Photo by RHA Nationals
It has been an exceptionally strong run for The Rink Hockey Academy's Carson Lambos over the past two hockey seasons. On Monday morning, that hard work and determination was rewarded as the 15-year-old defenceman of Winnipeg signed a standard player contract with the Western Hockey League's Kootenay Ice.
Following back-to-back 15-goal seasons with RHA's Bantam Prep team in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League, Lambos was selected second overall in the 2018 WHL Bantam Draft in early May.
After a stellar 15-goal, 38-point first year put Lambos on the map, the six-foot, 200-pound blueliner followed that performance up with two more assists in the 2017-18 season, bringing his totals to 15 goals and 40 points on the season. Lambos led all CSSHL defenceman in scoring this past season, and was voted as the league's top blueliner.
In all, 33 Manitobans were taken on draft day at the beginning of May. 10 of those 33 Manitobans belonged to RHA, including the first five on the board, with Tyler Brennan, Eric Alarie, Skylar Bruce and Hudson Thornton all going long before the third round even began.
Kootenay stayed busy Monday, also coming to terms with RHA product Skylar Bruce on another standard player agreement with the organization. Bruce went 29th overall to the Ice in the second round of May's draft.
The 5-foot-8, 130-pound forwrard collected 21 goals and 40 points over 30 games for RHA this past season. He also put up three goals and eight points in five postseason games. Bruce also ended the 2017-18 season with some hardware, as the Winnipeg product collected the league's Most Sportsmanlike Player Award.
A full WHL Draft breakdown is listed below:
Kootenay Ice – Carson Lambos, Winnipeg (2nd)
Prince George – Tyler Brennan, Prince George (21st)
Moose Jaw – Eric Alarie, Winnipeg (22nd)
Kootenay Ice – Skyler Bruce, Winnipeg (29th)
Prince George – Hudson Thornton, Winnipeg (33rd)
Seattle – Conner Roulette, Winnipeg (34th)
Vancouver – Justin Lies, Flin Flon (56th)
Brandon – Cabrel Labossiere, Lorette (59th)
Calgary – Rory Neill, Winnipeg (62nd)
Seattle – Aidan Brook, Roblin (76th)
Portland – Dawson Pasternak, Winnipeg (85th)
Everett – Carter Halamandaris, Portage la Prairie (86th)
Red Deer – Chase Bertholet, Thompson (94th)
Brandon – Owen Weins, Winnipeg (95th)
Victoria – Trentyn Crane, Morden (103rd)
Prince George – Mike Svenson, Ile Des Chenes (104th)
Moose Jaw – Lucas Brenton, Winnipeg (111th)
Swift Current – Braeden Lewis, Virden (114th)
Prince Albert – Tayem Gislason, Winnipeg (119th)
Brandon – Tyler Teasdale, Winnipeg (125th)
Kelowna – William Irvine, Morden (128th)
Portland – Aiden Litke, Winnipeg (129th)
Regina – Colby Wotton, Foxwarren (136th)
Everett – Sloan Stanick, Rapid City (145th)
Kootenay – Hughie Hooker, Winnipeg (149th)
Everett – Nate Goodbrandson, St. Andrews (152nd)
Spokane – Grady Lane, Virden (156th)
Lethbridge – Ashton Romaniuk, La Broquerie (166th)
Victoria – Bazin Roux, Treherne (170th)
Spokane – Brandt Young, Neepawa (208th)
Swift Current – Zach Davis, Winnipeg (211th)
Vancouver – Kyle Melo, Lorette (232nd)
Regina – Colby Bear, Peguis (236th)