Ice Hawks welcome back blueliner

Gabriel LeBlanc chips in with a pair of assists in 5-3 win over Abbotsford

The Delta Ice Hawks welcomed back another familiar face Tuesday night and remained unbeaten at the Ladner Leisure Centre.

Blueliner Gabriel LeBlanc stepped into the line-up and chipped in with a couple of assists in the Hawks 5-3 win over the Abbotsford Pilots. 

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The 19-year-old was among the top rookies in the Pacific Junior Hockey League last season and attended the Nanaimo Clippers training camp under former Delta GM and head coach Darren Naylor. LeBlanc remains in the the B.C. Hockey League club’s plans as an affiliate player.

The Hawks’ leaned on their latest recruiting class to look after the majority of the offensive production against the Pilots. Kevin Kutasi, Jordin Kojima, and Branthur Federucci all scored their first goals in a Delta uniform as the hosts enjoyed 2-1 and 5-2 period leads.

Kojima also chipped in with an assist and comes to the Ice Hawks from the former Seafair Minor Hockey Association. The 18-year-old is a standout all-round athlete who scored 41 points for the McMath Wildcats in the title game of the 2018 Richmond Senior Boys BasketballChampionship.

Jonathan Rees and Alex Suprynowicz had the other Ice Hawks goals, while Jordy Engleson made 30 saves in his third consecutive start.

Delta will put its unbeaten record (2-0-1-0) on the line Saturday in North Vancouver against the Wolf Pack (1-1-0-0) before returning home next Tuesday to take on the Ridge Meadows Flames in a rematch of last year’s PJHL championship series. Game time is 7:35 p.m.

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