Moosomin Senior Rangers getting geared up now for a big 2021-22 season

Number of exciting player signings to be announced at June 12 Rangers Alumni golf tournament

June 7, 2021, 10:46 am
Kevin Weedmark

The Moosomin Rangers and Rocanville Tigers in a game last November before the season was cancelled due to Covid.

It’s still spring, but already the Moosomin Senior Rangers are gearing up for the 2021-22 hockey season, with plans for a revitalized team, a new Rangers Alumni Association to help fundraise throughout the year, and more events.
Moosomin Rec Director Mike Schwean says that after a year of virtually no play due to Covid, the Rangers want to come charging out of the gates for the upcoming season as a better, stronger team. He says the Rangers Alumni Golden Skate Golf Tournament being held on Saturday, June 12 will mark one of the first big events for the Rangers,

He’s hoping people sign up to play in the tournament . . . and he says there will be some big announcements at the tournament regarding new player signings for the 2021-22 season.

“We started our online alumni committee, and our hope is to help the Rangers with the fundraising for players and other things,” says Schwean. “We have about 20 guys signed up now, alumni, that are on our committee that sit in our meetings. We’re always welcoming more.

“We have lots of plans going forward but our first one is our golf tournament—we call it our Moosomin Alumni Golden Skate Tournament—on Saturday, June 12. We’re taking teams of six, so you can enter individually and we can put you on a team as well. It’s $40 to play and that includes supper. It gets you 18 holes of golf.

“We’re trying to get all the players out, a lot of our alumni, but it’s also open to golfers and people that just want to support the team and maybe are willing to help out in the winter with some of the different things the alumni have going on. It will have a sign up sheet at the golf course, and they can also phone the Rec Office to register a team.”

Schwean says there will be some exciting announcements at the tournament.

“We want to make sure we get a lot of players. We’re excited because we are going to announce some new player signs at the tournament for this winter. We have a couple high-end guys who have already committed to the team. We’ll announce that at the tournament. So we’re hoping to get a lot of supporters out there, golfers in general, alumni and just have a really fun day. It’s not really meant to raise a bunch of money.

“We would like to thank the Pipestone Golf Course for helping us with the tournament as far as expenses go.

“Then after that, we have a whole bunch of things lined up for the summer. We’re going to have a summer Iron Man. We’ve never done one before but it will be in mid August. We’ll play slo pitch, we’ll play ball hockey, we’ll do beach volleyball and we’ll do indoor golf at the Sportsplex. So we have a fun weekend planned there. We’ll raise a little bit of money there and we’re planning in the fall for a meet and greet weekend in early October.

“Right now we’re hoping to run a senior hockey tournament. We haven’t done that before but we’ll get maybe four to six teams and during that weekend we’ll have an alumni meet and greet where some of the old fellows come back and then meet some of the players on this year’s team.

“Then also we have a big weekend planned around Christmas time which will be an alumni weekend where we have an alumni game. We’re going to do our own hall of fame inductions from seniors to teams past. So there will be lots of things planned that weekend as well. We will probably have some kind of social.

“The Rangers always have a hard time finding someone to play that weekend. So that will be a weekend where you’re going to see guys like Jeff Cole, Todd Davidson, maybe Dan Davidson, a whole bunch of the old guys that are still around and maybe some guys come back to town to play in that.

“So we’ve got lots of stuff going on. Our intention is to raise money to help pay for players for the team, and with the different things we’ve got planned we’re excited about it.”

Schwean says Covid-19 is one of the reasons that the Rangers alumni committee was formed and plans got rolling to revitalize the team. He says there was a realization that the Rangers were struggling, made even worse by the pandemic, and that the team could come out of the pandemic and either continue to struggle or flourish.

“Covid-19 is a terrible thing but it actually in some ways kind of reset everybody,” he says. “A bunch of the older fellows were talking, and the team kind of struggled the last year before Covid-19 and last year was kind of shut down. We think it’s a reset, we think coming out of Covid-19 some teams may struggle, some might flourish, it’s hard to say, but we want to make sure our team flourishes. We understand the importance of the senior Rangers team to the community and the rink as well.”

Schwean says the pandemic has been hard on all senior hockey teams. The Rangers played three or four games last season before it was shut down due to Covid.

“It was just tough—tough on everyone,” says Schwean. “I think the only good thing for them was when it got shut down, they knew it was over. I think it was disappointing and that was our concern with some of the older players, having missed last year, unless there was some buzz around the team, they might just decide that was enough. We didn’t want to see that.

“We had a meeting last week, we went over the list of players, and we think we’re going to have a pretty good hockey team this year. We’re excited to announce some of our signings at our golf tournament. The tournament itself will be a lot of fun.

“The tournament itself is one of a kind, I don’t think it’s been done anywhere. It’s a hockey bracket style, so you’ll turn your score card in against them and your score card will match up. So you have six players on a team, four will play a scramble, two will play their own ball and then whoever wins the scramble on that hole wins points. If it’s tied you go to an overtime, we call it which is your high single guy and then second overtime to your second single guy and you’ll get a point for every hole that you win. Two of you in the front nine, two of you in the back nine, and then we’ll just walk out the brackets. So you’ll end up just like the Stanley Cup and eventually have a winner at the end.

“We have an old Golden Skate Award we dug out, it was an old Moose Fraternity Trophy that’s really super cool that we haven’t used in years that we’re refurbishing. Then the third flight winner will win a golden wedge and then I think the second flight winner will win a golden seven iron and the first flight will win a golden three iron and the winner will win a golden driver. So we have some kind of cool prizes.

“It’s a great chance for people in general to get out and show their support for the team going forward. I think this is a big year for us.”

Schwean says he thinks the tournament is going to be popular.

“I think it will fill up. I think players are excited to take part. I know there’s some alumni excited to take part. Again, we really, really want to get some now alumni out just to show their support. Plus one of the jobs of the alumni this winter will be to run the Blue Moose Lounge so we hope some non-alumni will help out with working a shift or two in there to help out as well. So we’ll have a sign up sheet at the golf tournament.”

What does Schwean think hockey is going to be like this winter after everyone had a year off?

“I think it will be fantastic. I hope they can have tournaments early in the year. Again, starting with the Rangers, they’re excited. I think they’ll have a pretty good team if they want to go to provincials in Saskatchewan and if that happens in Manitoba. Minor hockey’s going to be great too. They won Minor Hockey Association of the Year. That’s exciting and they’ve got a lot of good things in the go. Hopefully they can run tournaments in the fall. I think it’s going to be fantastic. I’m excited, I’m really excited for the winter season.”