Chase Klassen has been named the 20th Captain in the history of the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.
The 20-year old from Colwood, BC received the surprise news from head coach and general manager Joe Martin during last night’s Awards Gala at Rim Rock Casino.
Earlier in the evening, Klassen was awarded the Bulldogs “Community Hero” Award. It was no surprise when Martin made the captaincy announcement, the room erupted into cheers from billet families, sponsors, community supporters, families and of course fellow players.
Joe Martin focused heavily on the job that outgoing Captain Stephen Castagna and his fellow leadership group did during the season, and he expected Klassen and the next crop of leaders to carry the torch forward into another season of Bulldogs hockey. “Being a captain is not an easy job, but we know Chase is up for the challenge.” said Martin.
Klassen has appeared in 71 games as a Bulldog, registering 16 goals and 20 assists in that time. He’s also accumulated 91 penalty minutes.
Klassen has become a fan favourite of the Dawg Pound faithful during his time in Port Alberni, largely based on his hard nosed, physical style. Klassen’s work ethic has endeared himself to fans and they shouldn’t expect that to change once the “C” is officially sowed on his jersey for next season.
Bulldogs president David Michaud was thrilled with the coaching staff’s decision to name Klassen the Captain. “As Joe pointed out, we have a tremendous group of players coming back that could have been given this honour, our club won’t be lacking leadership next year. In Chase’s situation specifically, I think he’s a great choice to continue building on the foundation that was laid by Castagna and the other leaders this year. Knowing Chase, he will sprinkle in a touch of his character, and that is a good thing.”
The Bulldogs staff will be hosting their annual Spring ID Camp at the Multiplex this weekend. Six teams of hopefuls will strut their stuff in the hopes of catching the attention of the Bulldogs brass. Current Bulldogs who have earned roster spots from this camp include Chase Klassen, Ethan Bono & Caden Tremblay. The camp runs Friday through Sunday and is open to the public.