|North Bay Battalion|
|Owen Sound Attack|
|Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds|
|Acadie-Bathurst Titan||Baie-Comeau Drakkar|
|Blainville-Boisbriand Armada||Cape Breton Screaming Eagles|
|Charlottetown Islanders||Chicoutimi Sagueneens|
|Drummondville Voltigeurs||Gatineau Olympiques|
|Halifax Mooseheads||Moncton Wildcats|
|Quebec Remparts||Rimouski Oceanic|
|Rouyn-Noranda Huskies||Saint John Sea Dogs|
|Shawinigan Cataractes||Sherbrooke Phoenix|
|Val-d'Or Foreurs||Victoriaville Tigres|
Rolling into a new regular season one Moose Jaw Warrior is looking to step up and take a bigger role on and off the ice. 19 year old Sam Fioretti is entering his third season with the Tribe, and after having a successful sophomore year, he’s looking forward to playing an even bigger role this year.
In 2010-11 Fioretti had eight goals and 23 points in 67 games in his rookie campaign, last year he suited up in 65 games and had 21 points and 47 points. With leaders from last year like Quinton Howden, Dylan McIlrath, and James Henry no longer with the team, Fioretti says he’s hoping to add to his offensive numbers while taking on a bigger leadership role.
“The biggest thing that I learned was working hard; you have to set the table for the younger guys by working hard every day. They look at that and realize what they have to do to work hard every day, “Fioretti said when talking about what he learned from past leaders and how he will apply that to his leadership style. “Just be a good guy, they don’t know what goes on in a 72 game schedule, if they have questions we need to answer them for them and be there whenever they need me.”
Fioretti and many of the Warrior veterans haven’t played during the pre-season, and it’s expected that they’ll finally see game action this weekend against Swift Current, which he says is well overdue. “Besides training camp the last competitive game us returning guys played was Game 5 (of the 2012 Eastern Conference Final) against Edmonton, we have to get back on the ice. I think everyone is anxious to get out there, it’s been so long, but we’ve spent some good time practicing.”
“I think Coach Stothers does a great job of doing high intensity drills to keep up motivated at a high intensity, but it’s hard to simulate games for that long,” said Fioretti when talking about their practices over the last week in preparation for this weekend’s games.
Fioretti and several of the returning players still have harsh memories when thinking about losing to the Oil Kings in the Conference Finals last season, however, he’s quick to admit that rehashing those memories supplies them with motivation for this year.
“When you get that far in playoffs you know what it takes to get that little bit further, I think every guy in the room who saw that last year wants to take that extra step. I think we do a good job of working at it every day, it’s a process but it definitely motivates me to take the next step and be a bigger part of the team this year.”
Even though the team has lost a number of impact players from last year, Fioretti is optimistic that this team can still have success. “I expect that we’re going to be a team that comes out and competes every night. With that if we work hard like we can, I have no problems seeing us having success in the regular season and in the playoffs.”
The Warriors pre-season schedules continues this weekend with a home and home series against Swift Current, the first game is Friday night in Maple Creek, the back half will be Sunday, 2pm at Mosaic Place. Moose Jaw finishes off their exhibition schedule with a weekend set against Brandon on the 14th and 15th, the regular season and home opener is Friday, September 21st against the Broncos.