Sports Hockey

Dupasquier gets Capitals' 'C'

By Dan Falloon, Portage Daily Graphic

New Central Plains Capitals captain Aaron Dupasquier celebrates a goal alongside graduated captain Derek Millar in the 2011-12 season. (File photo)

New Central Plains Capitals captain Aaron Dupasquier celebrates a goal alongside graduated captain Derek Millar in the 2011-12 season. (File photo)

Aaron Dupasquier is the new captain of the Central Plains Capitals.

The 17-year-old St. Claude product takes over from the graduated Derek Millar.

Duspasquier, a five-foot-10 175-lb forward, had 17 goals and 22 assists in 45 games last season.

He was taken aback to find out the news at practice Monday night.

"I wasn't really expecting it," said Duspasqier. "I was surprised."

Dupasquier, who has gained a reputation as a spark plug through his years in the Central Plains system, hopes to keep that energy up in his new role.

"I'll hopefully make everyone positive, not bring everyone down," said Dupasqier. "I'll bring my hardest every game, every shift.

"Keep everyone up-to-date and keep them going."

Dupasquier said he learned a lot by watching Millar last year.

"We were talking about (Millar) with (coach Blaine) Boyle," said Dupasquier. "We all agreed (it was positive) how he came to practices and came to games and didn't quit and kept going.

"He just kept working hard and would bear down no matter what."

Joining Dupasquier as alternate captains are defenceman Scott Wiebe of Portage and centre Devin Muir of Oak Bluff.

The Capitals won just one of seven pre-season games, but Dupasquier feels the club is gelling and should be good to go when it starts the season Saturday night against the Yellowhead Chiefs at 8 p.m. at the PCU Centre.

"Right now, we're looking good," said Dupasqier. "There are a lot of young guys that are alright. We should be right up there this year, but we've just got to show it now."

The Capitals were supposed to play a final exhibition game Saturday against the Pembina Valley Hawks, but scuttled it due to the team being extremely shorthanded.

"We had five guys out because of injuries," said Boyle. "We're trying to get healthy.

"We've still got three guys down and out with muscle injuries. They're trying to skate and it's not getting better. We're just going to let them sit out this weekend, probably, and next weekend will hopefully be a little bit better."

Boyle said Robert Smith, Tyler Ham and Codi Lashewicz are all currently not practicing, with Lashewicz the only one even a distinct possibility of strapping on the blades for the season-opener.

Boyle is looking forward to the season lidlifter on Saturday night, even with a fairly trying preseason in recent memory.

"We haven't been able to do much hitting in practice, just because we're trying to get healthy here, but I think we'll be ready to rumble on Saturday," said Boyle.

In terms of the goaltending situation, both keepers are expected to see action this weekend. Returnee Bronson Ammeter will get the start against Yellowhead, while rookie Brendan Schaan will likely play against the defending league champion Winnipeg Wild on Sunday afternoon.

"We'll can throw him in there to the wolves," said Boyle of Schaan. "He might as well start against a good team."

Twitter: PDGdfalloon

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