By Victor Fernandes Erie Times-News staff blogger
Staff writer Victor Fernandes has ice in his veins. Hockey – he plays it, coaches it and provides the region's best coverage of it.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1716
Posts tagged ‘lake shore country club’
Posted: August 30th, 2010

Erie Otters winger Anthony Luciani and defenseman David Shields declined contract offers from NHL clubs this summer.

The Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks offered Luciani, a 20-year-old overager, an AHL/ECHL deal after he attended the club’s rookie development camp in July.

But his agent, Neil Sheehy, of Boston and Minneapolis-based Sheehy Hockey, LLC advised him not to accept it, Luciani said. Until he declined the offer, Luciani planned to represent the Blackhawks in the Toronto Maple Leafs‘ rookie tournament, set for Sept. 11-14 at John Labatt Centre in London, Ontario.

“My agent knows what’s best, so I went with him,” Luciani, who received interest from the Blackhawks after producing 38 goals and 68 points last season, said before the Champions for Education Golf Tournament at Lake Shore Country Club on Monday – the unofficial start to Otters’ training camp.

“You can always do better (with a contract offer),” Luciani said. “I’m just going to play (my final junior season) and see how it goes.”

Shields, 19, the St. Louis Blues‘ sixth-round pick in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, chose not to accept the club’s qualifying offer in June, which Shields described as a three-year deal at the league’s minimum rookie salary and with no signing bonus.

“It’s just basically to be with them for another three years,” said Shields, who has until June 1, 2011 – the NHL’s signing deadline for 2009 draft picks – to avoid becoming a free agent.

“It’s definitely a risk,” Shields said. “But in the long run, I think it’s a good (decision). I think I can really show that I want it and get more of an offer for me. I know it’s a really big year.”

Shields will play for the Blues in the NHL Prospects Tournament, set for Sept. 11-15 in Traverse City, Mich. A strong performance could lead to an invitation to main camp later in the month.

* Speaking of better offers: Forward Shawn Szydlowski, 20, an overager, originally planned to join Luciani at the Blackhawks’ rookie development camp. But while Chicago’s interest began to grow cold, Szydlowski received an invitation to the Ottawa Senators‘ development camp in July.

“Everything went well there,” Szydlowski said. So he will play for the Senators in the Maple Leafs’ rookie tournament against, among other prospects, Otters teammate Greg McKegg, Toronto’s third-round pick in the 2010 NHL draft.

Senators officials “told me they would give me an honest shot” to earn a spot at main camp and, ultimately, a contract, Szydlowski said. “Now that I’ve got an opportunity to do this, (I’ll) hopefully prove something to them and then have another year in Erie, if I come back.”

* Belief system: Coach Robbie Ftorek believes more players believe in the team’s ability to surpass its achievements of the past two seasons, which included 67 wins and two first-round defeats in the OHL playoffs. But his work isn’t complete.

“Shame on me because I believe in what we can do,” Ftorek said. “But I haven’t convinced (all of) the players yet to believe. It takes them to believe and to trust and rely upon one another and care about one another. If they do that, then we’ll be successful. We’re working at it.”

* Speaking of Ftorek: He remains intent on focusing on nothing beyond the current day. Before the golf tournament on Monday, he was asked about his expectations for the 2010-11 season.

“I want to get through my first shot off the tee box,” he said. “Then we’ll worry about the other stuff. We’re going to take it again one game at a time and let the other things take care of themselves.”

* News and notes: The Erie Otters Fan Club will hold its next meeting on Sept. 7 at 6:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 707 Sassafras Street. … Former Otters defenseman Chris Campoli (2000-04) played in the golf outing, but wasn’t expected to skate with the team in camp. He signed a one-year contract with Ottawa, worth a reported $1.4 million, in July.

- Victor Fernandes

Posted: June 7th, 2010

The Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League have announced that 2010 first round draft pick Chris Marchese will throw out the first pitch before the Erie SeaWolves‘ baseball game against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats at Jerry Uht Park Saturday night.

Marchese, a native of Woodbridge, Ontario, collected 39 goals and 56 assists in 72 games playing left wing for the Toronto Marlboros last season. He was teammates with Adam Pelech and Connor Brown, both selected by the Otters in May. Marchese will be available for autographs in the concourse during the start of the game.

Marchese and the rest of the Otters will be in town for the 15th Annual Summer Awards Banquet, which takes place Sunday in the Sheraton Erie Bayfront Hotel starting at 12:00 p.m. The banquet is sold out.

Season tickets for the 2010-11 season are available at one of the most affordable prices in the OHL. Reserve your seat for all 34 Otters home games and receive a number of outstanding season ticket holder benefits including personalized season ticket books, free tickets to Otters preseason games played at the Tullio Arena, unused ticket redemption opportunities, merchandise discounts and more. Also ask about our new VIP Hat Trick Club!

The eighth annual Erie Otters Champions for Education Golf Tournament will be held August 30th at Lake Shore Country Club. The noon shotgun tournament offers golfers an opportunity to play a round with a member of the Otters (current or alumni) on one of Erie’s most challenging and picturesque 18-hole courses.

The benefactor of the Tournament is the Erie Otters Education Fund, which supports The Brad Boyes Scholarship, awarded annually to a local male high school athlete who excels on and off the playing field. The Fund also assists in the educational needs of former members of the Otters following their OHL careers. The tournament also supports numerous charities.

Registration for the tourney is $150 per player and includes golf with cart, lunch, snacks and beverages on the course, dinner following golf, prizes and much, much more. Space is limited so register today by calling the Otters’ office at 455-7779.

For further information contact the Otters at 814-455-7779 or e-mail the Otters at

- From Erie Otters news release

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