The Powassan Voodoos have secured the return of forward Jake Staples and defenceman Josh Ibbitson to the 2015-16 roster, the club announced on Monday.
Staples, a Callander native, joined the Voodoos at the January CJHL trade deadline from the English River Miners and did not disappoint.
In 20 regular season games, Staples netted 11 goals and 12 assists for 23 points while wearing the ‘C’ for a number of games in place of injured captain Aaron Sullivan.
However, Staples made his biggest impact in the playoffs by leading the team in playoff scoring with 11 goals and 7 assists in only 12 playoff games as the Voodoos went to the NOJHL semi-finals.
During that run the Voodoos beat the Mattawa Blackhawks in 2 straight and defeated the defending NOJHL champion Kirkland Lake Gold Miners in 6 games, before falling in four straight to the Cochrane Crunch.
The 1995 birth year forward is hoping to be a leader this season and hopes to find his way onto a NCAA D I or D III roster for the following year.
“It’s really humbling to return to the Voodoos, we had a really strong finish last year and I think we are looking to build on it this year,” said Staples.
Head Coach Scott Wray says the Staples signing secures some veteran leadership up front.
“He played such a solid role down the stretch for us, he was instrumental in us beating Kirkland Lake and Mattawa and came up with some timely goals and he was a treat to have as a younger coach like myself,” stated Wray about Staples.
On the other side, the Voodoos re-sign the first ever Voodoos player signed in the form of Josh Ibbitson. The former North Bay Midget AAA Trappers top defenceman in 2013-14, is expected to play another key role on the Voodoos blue line in 2015-16.
“It was an honour to be even thought of as the first person (last year) and I take some pride in that and I really want to represent our team well, and I think Staples and I will certainly do that this year,” said Ibbitson, who had 5 assists in 9 playoff games and 3 goals and 19 assists for 22 points in 49 regular season games.
“He’s a hard nosed, in your face defenceman, he’s good at shutting guys down and he took major strides last year and I’m excited to have both of them back,” Wray said about Ibbitson, who also hails from Callander.
The Voodoos will be holding another Prospects Camp in North Bay from July 17th to 19th at Pete Palangio arena. Any interested players (1999 to 1995 birth years) are asked to email GM Chris Dawson at GM@voodooshockey.com for more information.