The Flin Flon Bombers’ signing purge continued this past week, as the team added four more pieces to the fold for the coming season, including that of Oakbank’s Ethan McColm. The 6-foot-3, 180-pound defenceman spent the past four seasons with the U15, U17 and U18 AAA Eastman Selects.
With Eastman, the soon-to-be 18-year-old provided shut-down defence, while pitching in on offence throughout his time. McColm produced at his highest rate in 2019-20, where he put together five goals, 30 points and 64 penalty minutes in 37 games on the back-end. His totals within Manitoba AAA include 19 goals, 96 points and 212 penalty minutes in 184 combined games.
“He is a 6-foot-3 defender with good reach and physical upside,” said Bombers Manitoba scout Mark Patton in a team release. “He is a solid, fluid skater with excellent stride length and overall game speed. Difficult to play against, effective in all three zones and very smart.”
After putting the finishing touches on deals with defenceman Collin Jennings (Vancouver, BC), forward Jaxon Martens (Warman, SK) and goaltender Jared Thompson (Regina, SK) from June 30 to July 4, the Bombers added McColm defender to the mix, joining fellow Selects teammate Drayden Kurtbatoff in Flin Flon, who earlier signed back on June 18.
The early offseason signings of Jordan Pfoh (Norman Northstars), Cole Duperreault (Beardy’s Blackhawks), Noah Kuntz (Regina Pat-Canadians), Nathan Gagne (Ontario Hockey Academy), Ayden Lane (Yale Hockey Academy) and Mackenzie Carson (Tisdale Trojans) set the stage for the eventual commitments of Manitobans Drayden Kurbatoff and Reece Richmond. Then in adding Jennings, Martens, Thompson and McColm, the Bombers nearly have all of their dirty work taken care of, and it’s only still early July.
Also this offseason, former Bombers Alec Malo (University of Manitoba Bisons), Caleb Franklin (VIU Mariners), Cole Refuse (Acadia Axemen), Dane First (Aurora University Spartans) and Troy Quinn (UWS Yellowjackets) have each committed to post-secondary hockey for the coming 2020-21 season. It has been nothing short of a busy three months for Flin Flon.
After advancing to the SJHL semifinal with a series victory over Humboldt, the Bombers saw their season cut short in the wake of the current pandemic. The 2019-20 Sherwood Hockey Division winners will look for redemption in the 2020-21 SJHL season with a new-look squad, missing the likes of eight graduating players.