Brad Bakken (L) and Aaron Riemersma




LANGLEY, British Columbia –
Trinity Western University men’s hockey coach Dwayne Lowdermilk is thrilled to announce the signing of a pair of local products in defenceman Brad Bakken (Langley, B.C.) and forward Aaron Riemersma (Abbotsford, B.C).

The pair both grew up not far from Trinity Western and upon joining the Spartans they will both provide the Spartans with a few extra sheets of sandpaper, some notable size and stability to Trinity Western’s defensive zone.

The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Bakken joins the Spartans after playing last year with Mount Royal University of the ACAC (Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference) where he registered 10 assists and had 14 penalty minutes in 17 games as he helped the Cougars to a league title.

The right-handed shooting Bakken will not only be returning to familiar territory off the ice, having grown up just down the road from Trinity Western, but he also will do so on the ice as he played the better part of three seasons with the BCHL’s Langley Chiefs, where he had six goals, 34 assists and 222 penalty minutes in 161 games from 2007 to 2010.

“Brad is a player that I believe will truly come into his own here at Trinity Western, which will allow his offensive gifts to mature,” Lowdermilk said. “I’m very excited to show someone like Brad, who is excellent defensively, that he also can excel in the offensive zone.”

Prior to his time with the Langley rendition of the Chiefs organization, Bakken played 53 games with the WHL’s Seattle Thunderbirds, 48 of which came in the 2006-07 campaign. He had one assist and 25 penalty minutes in that span.

“Trinity Western was a solid option and my final choice because of its location and drive for athletic improvement.  With Dwayne Lowdermilk behind the bench I know my game can only improve.  He is a world class coach who has playing experience in the highest levels of hockey, including the NHL.  

“Dwayne's love for the game exceeds his vast knowledge of the sport but it’s that knowledge I hope to soak up and apply on the ice in the upcoming season. I am looking forward to pulling on a Spartans jersey for the first time and playing under a coach like Dwayne.”

Aaron Riemersma is a 6-foot-2, 185-pound forward who played with the Aldergrove Kodiaks of the Junior “B” PIJHL (Pacific International Junior Hockey League).Playing in 33 games for the Kodiaks last year, Riemersma registered one goal, eight assists and 127 penalty minutes.

Prior to that, in 2009-10, the gritty forward played 10 games for the for the PIJHL’s Grandview Steelers, collecting two assists and 10 penalty minutes. In 2008-09, Riemersma, as a 16-year-old, played in the Northern Pacific Hockey League (an American Tier III Junior A league) with the Medford, Ore. based Rogue Valley Wranglers, a team now known as the Southern Oregon Spartans. While there, he played in 44 games, scored six goals, added 13 assists and collected 50 penalty minutes.

“Aaron is a solid up and down winger who plays with grit and is responsible in his own zone,” Lowdermilk said. “I’m very excited to work with Aaron. He’s a good skater and he plays an aggressive style. He plays well in both the offensive and defensive zones and will be a great asset for our team this season.”

And for Riemersma, when Trinity Western became an option, he didn’t need much persuading.

“I chose to come to Trinity Western because of the Christian aspect of the school and how that would be incorporated into the team. I've played hockey for fifteen years and I'm usually the only Christian on the team and this can be difficult at times. But the fact that there will be other believers and a Godly aspect within the game made my decision to come to Trinity Western a lot easier and much more exciting.

“Dwayne is so dedicated towards the game and to helping us become involved in the community. With his coaching knowledge, I feel he will make me a better player and a stronger Christian.”

Bakken and Riemersma join fellow Spartans hockey recruits forwards Tristano Falbo (Langley, B.C.), Aman Sidhu (Port Alberni, B.C.), Sam Gemmell (Danville, CA), Josh Gordon (London, Ont.) and Kye Benjaminsen (Ladner, B.C.). and defenceman Dylan Mooney (Squamish, B.C.), Chris Stew (Surrey, B.C.) and Jonathan Demme (Brampton, Ont.).

The Spartans will open their home preseason schedule Saturday when they take on Okanagan College at 1:00 p.m. at the Langley Events Centre. The Spartans lost their first and only preseason tilt thus far, falling to Simon Fraser 9-4 on Sept. 10.


Last Updated: 2011-09-22
Author: Mark Janzen