The Alberni Valley Bulldogs made a few roster moves ahead of the trade deadline last week, adding a big piece to their backend, as well as a former WHL forward.
On Friday, Jan. 10, the Bulldogs acquired defenceman Mattias Dal Monte from the Swan Valley Stampeders of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League in exchange for future considerations.
The 6’4″ and 220-pound Nanaimo product is tied for the scoring lead amongst defenceman in the MJHL. He has collected 42 points (12G, 30A) in 39 games and was recently named the Defenceman of the Month for December.
The 19-year-old is no stranger to the BCHL, as he played 79 games over the previous two seasons with the Merritt Centennials before being dealt to the Stampeders last August. He’s also no stranger to Port Alberni, as he previously played in the Alberni Valley Minor Hockey program.
Dal Monte thanked the Stampeders organization over Twitter after the trade announcement.
“With that being said I’m incredibly excited for a new opportunity back where it all started,” he added.
I’d like to thank everyone that made my time in Swan River so memorable, truly a first class organization from top to bottom. With that being said I’m incredibly excited for a new opportunity back where it all started. @AVBulldogs pic.twitter.com/MrZ0G6pChN
— Mattias (@mattiasdalmonte) January 10, 2020
Bulldogs head coach and general manager Joe Martin coached Dal Monte during his time in Merritt.
“Adding a right handed defenceman with over 100 games experience is a great step for our group,” he said in a press release. “And by adding our second right shot, it will really helps us strategically in many situations.”
The Alberni Valley Bulldogs also traded defenceman Carson Hemenway to the Penticton Vees for future considerations, and in a separate move, signed forward River Fahey.
With Hemenway, Martin admitted that it’s “tough” to see a young and talented player leave, but with the addition of Dal Monte there was only so much ice to be shared. He thanked Hemenway for his time with the Bulldogs, and wished him all the best in Penticton.
Fahey, meanwhile, is a Campbell River product who has spent the past two and a half seasons in the WHL, suiting up for 95 games with Red Deer, Kootenay and Victoria.
“I really like his game,” said Martin. “Adding a player with WHL experience is great for our lineup. River has been skating with us and he has fit in well both on and off the ice.”
Fahey made his debut with the Bulldogs this weekend.