Vees name Sillinger, Meek assistant captains

Owen Sillinger and Mitch Meek join the Penticton Vees leadership group with assistant captain Gabe Bast and captain Nic Jones

PENTICTON VEES forward Owen Sillinger has been named an assistant captain for the 2016-17 BCHL season.

PENTICTON VEES forward Owen Sillinger has been named an assistant captain for the 2016-17 BCHL season.

Mitch Meek and Owen Sillinger will round out the Penticton Vees leadership group, the team announced on Monday.

Meek and Sillinger join fellow assistant captain Gabe Bast and captain Nic Jones.

“I am confident that our leadership group is in good hands led by Nic Jones, Gabe Bast, Owen Sillinger and Mitch Meek,” said Vees head coach and general manager Fred Harbinson in a team statement. “The word culture seems to be over used these days but all four of these players have a solid grasp of what it means to be a Penticton Vee, and will do an outstanding job as an extension of our coaching staff.”

Meek is entering his fifth and final season of junior hockey and his first with the Vees. The Victoria native has played in his hometown, Vernon and Cowichan Valley. Meek brings a wealth of experience as he is nearing the 200 games played plateau. In four seasons, Meek has played in 193 career regular season games, collecting 15 goals and 72 points to go with 162 penalty-minutes. Meek was acquired from the Capitals earlier in the summer. Meek has also played in 38 career playoffs games and played in both the 2014 Fred Page Cup Final and RBC Cup with the Vernon Vipers. In those 38 games, Meek has a goal and 10 points. Meek led all Vees defenceman in scoring this pre-season with a goal and six points in four games.

Sillinger, 19, is entering his second season with the Vees after coming from the Regina Pat Canadians in the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League (SMHL). In his rookie season, the Regina, Sask., native had 16 goals and 45 points in 58 games. He was one of the Vees’ best forwards after the Christmas break and was named the Vees’ Player of the Month in January. Prior to joining the Vees, Sillinger won the SMHL Championship in 2015 and led the Pat Canadians to a third-place finish at the Telus Cup in Quebec. There, he was the Top Scorer and named the Top Forward and Tournament MVP. Wearing a letter isn’t new to Sillinger, who captained his midget team two years ago.

Sillinger finished with a goal and five points in four pre-season games. He’s committed to Arizona State University next fall.

The Vees open the regular season on Sept. 10 when they travel to Prince George to face the Spruce Kings. Face-off is 7 pm. Fans can listen to the season opener on EZ Rock AM 800, or they can watch online at www.fasthockey.com.