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Wolfpack hockey looking to rebuild after a great season

New coach looks for senior leadership

Before we look ahead to the upcoming 2008-2009 Wolfpack hockey season, let’s bask a short while in the success of yesteryear. The team was on fire, crushing opponents as they rose to the
top of the league, finishing the
regular season 14-2 followed by
an amazing post-season run with
five wins in a row, including the
Rocky Mountain Youth Hockey
League title.
Yet, change is afoot in the
Wolfpack ranks this year and a
new coach, Rob Bramwell, is at
the helm.
Bramwell grew up playing
Triple A hockey in Des Moines,
Iowa before coming to the Gunnison
Valley seven years ago.
During his time in Gunnison,
Bramwell helped Tony Swedburg
with the Gunnison Blades before
moving north to Crested Butte.
Once in Crested Butte, Bramwell
waited for a coaching spot
to open up with the Wolfpack
and the opportunity came this
year.
“I had my name in the hat
and when I heard about the
opening I jumped on it,” says
Bramwell.
Last year’s Wolfpack assistant
coach Chris Werderitch
joins Bramwell as they anticipate
continuing the success from last
season.
But it isn’t going to be easy.
With most of last year’s
team gone to college, Bramwell
is looking to a couple returning
players to rally the team, including
last year’s leading points
scorer Robbie Holleran and
goalie Zach Van Dyke.
“Robbie and Zach are already
showing some leadership,”
says Bramwell. “Zach is an absolutely
outstanding goalie and is
one of the keys to our success.”
Other key returnees include
Ben Frame and Sam Evans and
Bramwell is looking to help fill
some of the gaps left from last
year’s team with a surge of firstyear
players.
“Ben should step up and
help lead the team,” says Bramwell.
“Sam is really solid and
will generate some points for
us. We’ve got some young talent
coming in this year.”
Thanks to the indoor rink in
Gunnison, the Wolfpack started
practice much earlier than last
season.
“The kids are seeing ice time
six weeks ahead of last year,”
says Bramwell.
Based on early season workouts,
Bramwell likes what he sees
and has set some goals for the
team.
“I’m seeing some good
things, absolutely,” says Bramwell.
As for his expectations?
“At least a winning season,”
says Bramwell. “Make it to the
playoffs and do well there.”
The Wolfpack opens the
season with four scrimmages
against the Gunnison Blades
Saturday and Sunday, November
29-30. Scrimmages are tentatively
scheduled for 9:30 and 11:30 a.m.
both days.
The regular season opens for
the Wolfpack on Friday, December
19 with a game against the
Gunnison Blades B team in Gunnison
at 6:30 p.m.
Their first home games will
be a double-header Sunday,
December 21 against Telluride at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.

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