DANE BYERS NAMED HERSHEY BEARS TEAM CAPTAIN
HERSHEY, Pa. – The Hershey Bears announced today that the club has named forward Dane Byers as team captain for the 2013-2014 season, and forwards Garrett Mitchell and Jeff Taffe as alternate captains. The announcement was made by Bears President/GM Doug Yingst.
Byers, 27, was acquired by the Bears in a late-season deal with the Edmonton Oilers. After appearing in 58 games with the Oilers’ AHL affiliate Oklahoma City Barons, Byers joined Hershey on April 2, going on to appear in five regular-season games and one Calder Cup playoff contest.
The 6-3, 204-pound native of Nipawin, Saskatchewan will wear the “C” on his third different American Hockey League team. Byers served as captain of the Hartford Wolf Pack from 2009-2011, and the Springfield Falcons in 2011-12. He served as alternate captain for the Barons last season.
Byers becomes the 41st player in Hershey Bears club history to serve as captain.
Mitchell, 22, is entering his third full season in Hershey since being selected by Washington in the sixth round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. The right winger put up career numbers last season, scoring 15 goals, assisting on 15 others, registering 94 penalty minutes and finishing with a plus-six efficiency rating while playing in all but one regular-season game.
The 5-11, 195-pound native of Regina, Saskatchewan has a total of 45 points (21 goals, 24 assists) and 184 penalty minutes in his 143-game AHL tenure. Prior to turning pro, Mitchell amassed 112 points (51 goals, 61 assists) and 465 penalty minutes in 264 career games for his hometown Regina Pats (WHL).
Taffe, 32, returns for his second season in Chocolatetown after another putting forth more superb offensive numbers. He led all Bears in scoring in 2012-13 with 71 points (18 goals, 53 assists) in 73 games played, a number which ranked second overall in the American Hockey League. His 53 assists tied for the league lead, while his 21 power-play assists topped the AHL.
The 6-3, 215-pound native of Hastings, Minnesota represented the Bears at the 2013 Dunkin’ Donuts AHL All-Star Classic and was named to the AHL’s Second All-Star Team. Taffe also reached two significant milestones during the year, playing in his 600th AHL game on April 7 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and scoring his 500th career AHL point on April 20at Binghamton.
HERSHEY BEARS TEAM CAPTAINS
1938-39 Sammy McManus
1939-43 Wally Kilrea
1943-44 Hank Lauzon, Pat Patterson (co-captains)
1944-45 Peggy O’Neill
1946-47 Harvey Bennett
1947-48 Gordie Bruce
1948-49 Herb Cain
1950-52 Frank Mario
1957-59 Obie O’Brien
1960-61 Myron Stankiewicz
1962-63 Barry Ashbee, Marc Reaume (co-captains)
1967-71 Mike Nykoluk
1972-74 Ralph Keller
1974-75 Billy Inglis
1975-76 Steve Cardwell
1977-78 Steve Andrascik
1979-80 Bob Bilodeau
1981-83 Tony Cassolato
1983-84 Jay Johnston
1984-85 Steve Smith
1985-87 Don Nachbaur
1987-93 Dave Fenyves
1994-95 Stewart Malgunas
1995-96 Shawn McCosh
1996-97 Mike Hartman
1996-98 Mike McHugh
1998-2001 Brad Larsen
2001-02 Kelly Fairchild
2002-03 Brent Thompson
2003-04 D.J. Smith
2004-05 Brett Clark
2005-06 Boyd Kane
2006-07 Lawrence Nycholat
2006-07 Dean Arsene, Alexandre Giroux (co-captains)
2007-08 Quintin Laing, Dean Arsene
2008-10 Bryan Helmer
2010-11 Andrew Joudrey
2011-13 Boyd Kane
2013-14 Dane Byers
The curtain will rise on the 76th season of Hershey Bears hockey on Saturday, October 5 as the club hosts the Adirondack Phantoms at 7:00 PM. Individual tickets are on sale at the GIANT Center box office, by calling (717) 508-BEAR or by going to TicketMaster.com on the internet.
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