From Bill Lane to Jeff Zippel, the Elmira Sugar Kings have a strong tradition of naming a defenceman to captain the team. That trend continued earlier this week when Colton Wolfe-Sabo was unveiled as the new Kings captain for the upcoming season.
“It was a very easy choice,” said head coach Dean DeSilva of the decision to give Wolfe-Sabo the “C”, taking over from last year’s captain, Josh Woolley.
“He’s the epitome of what we want in a Sugar King: he works hard, is a full-time university student who can juggle both hockey and classes, and is a very accountable and mature young man who is going to be a great role model for some of the younger players.”
The 5’8”, 190-pound product of Waterloo was traded to Elmira from the Siskins at the beginning of last season and was a solid addition to the blue line. He posted one goal and 21 assists in 47 games with the Kings, adding another three goals and eight assists in 25 playoff games to help the organization claim its first Sutherland Cup title in a decade.
Wolfe-Sabo said he was surprised when he got the call to be the new captain of the team.
“When I was notified, my heart started racing and my hair started standing up on end,” he said, adding that the captain’s responsibilities are familiar to him after spending five years as captain of his Waterloo Wolves AAA club prior to joining the Siskins in 2007.
“It’s such an esteemed organization and being a second-year player on the team, it’s truly an honour.”
The choice of Wolfe-Sabo as the new captain isn’t surprising, given the long history between the player and the coach. DeSilva had a first-hand look at Wolfe-Sabo’s development as the coach of the Siskins for the past three seasons.
The new captain also said that the onus was on him and the other veterans of the team to lead the new recruits through the unfamiliar grind of the Junior B hockey season and to repeat as Ontario champs.
“We definitely have a lot of young guys, but they have a lot of skill, and I think we’ll definitely be right back to where we were last year, if not a better hockey team. We just have to work hard and see what happens.”
The Kings wrap up their exhibition schedule tomorrow night (Sunday) in Elmira at 7:30 p.m. against Stratford, and they open the regular season next Friday in Owen Sound. Their home opener is Sept. 11 at 2 p.m. when they take on the Listowel Cyclones in a rematch of last season’s Cherrey Cup finals.