Langley Rivermen’s Colin Bernard is the Mainland Division nominee for top defenceman.

Rivermen’s Bernard a nominee for top d-man

Langley’s Colin Bernard has been a steadying presence on Rivermen blue-line

All season, Colin Bernard has been counted on as a veteran presence along the Langley Rivermen blue-line.

“He has been huge for us, especially with a young ‘D’ core,” said Rivermen head coach and general manager Bobby Henderson.

“He has been a good guy for them to look up to.”

The Rivermen acquired Bernard’s playing rights from the Chilliwack Chiefs at the start of this BCHL season.

And the move has paid dividends.

Earlier this week (Feb. 21), the 20-year-old from Stamford, CT. was announced as the junior A hockey league’s Mainland Division nominee for top defenceman.

He is up against the Nanaimo Clippers’ Max Crozier (Island Division) and the Wenatchee Wild’s Cooper Zech (Interior Division). The three finalists were selected by voting among the league’s head coaches.

“It is just an honour, obviously there are so many good defencemen not only in this division, but in this league,” Bernard said.

“To have my name considered up there along with some of the top guys in this league, it is just a great honour.”

Bernard was sixth on the team in scoring with three goals and 28 points, but did so in just 39 games. His 0.72 points per game were third on the team and seventh in the league among blue-liners.

“He is a big reason our power play has been clicking,” Henderson said. “And he can be effective in all situations.

“He is a guy that when the game is on the line, you want him on the ice. Those are qualities you look for in a hockey player.”

Bernard followed his father onto the blue-line. His father had been a forward, but his college coach facilitated the switch to defence.

“(My dad) said once he made the switch, it was some of the best hockey he played so he developed me into a defenceman right of the bat and ever since, it has been my home,” Bernard said.

The five-foot-10, 175-pounder — who joins the Sacred Hearts University team in the fall — will continue to be counted upon as a steadying presence with the BCHL playoffs just around the corner.

Only eight members of the team have post-season experience at the junior A level, a first-round loss last season, and only two of the defencemen are back from that team, which lost in six games.

So while his teammates have a combined 45 playoff games, and only a dozen from the blue- line, Bernard suited up in 23 games as Chilliwack went on a lengthy post-season run.

“I know it is something new to a lot of the guys on the team but it is just a whole new ball game, you are going to get the best from the 20 guys on the opposing side for however long the series may be,” he said.

“Having a possible seven games in nine nights, it becomes a mental thing, it is survival of the fittest, whatever you can do to win.

“You are not going to win with just a few guys, it is going to take the effort of 20 guys every single night if you want to see success.”



sports@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Just Posted

54-40 thrills Aldergrove Fair crowd: VIDEO

54-40 were joined on stage by the band members’ dancing children, the “Aldergrove Rockettes”

VIDEO: Critter Care opens its doors

Thousands attend open house at Langley wildlife rehabilitation centre

ZONE 3: Luck played no part in getting Riley Ward to the BC Games

Langley baller flouts misfortune on the floor; he’d rather get by on hard work

New zipline breaks in Langley City park

Brydon zipline will remain closed till end of summer

Top Cheese Tournament returns to Langley Events Centre

For box and field lacrosse players hoping to get in a few extra reps in

BC Games: Day 2 comes to an end

Hundreds of medals have been handed out at the 2018 BC Summer Games in the Cowichan Valley

B.C. mining company, involved in 2014 spill, ordered to pay lost wages

Mount Polley Mining Company must pay wages to 26 employees who were laid off without proper notice

Two significant wildfires burning in southeastern B.C.

More than 20 fires were burning in the Southeast Fire Centre as of Saturday afternoon

Volunteers provide the glue that keeps BC Games moving

The 2018 Cowichan Summer Games had more than 2,300 volunteers on hand across Vancouver Island

No Name brand chicken nuggets recalled due to possible salmonella

Canadian Food Inspection Agency says multiple illnesses reported in B.C., Alberta and Ontario

Lodeiro scores twice to help Sounders beat Whitecaps 2-0

Seattle’s Nicolas Lodeiro opened the scoring in the fifth minute when he converted a penalty kick

Fraser Surrey Docks mechanic dies on the job

‘This is a very sad day - a worker went to his job this morning and didn’t go home’

Race walker breaks 18-year-old BC Games record

Zone 6 athlete Olivia Lundman crossed finish line with ease, to loud cheers in Cowichan

PHOTO GALLERY: BC Games Day 2

A brief look at action from the 2018 BC Summer Games in the Cowichan Valley

Most Read