The Okanagan Rockets learned this week that they have lost the services of defenceman Sam DeMelo for the remainder of the 2014-2015 season.
DeMelo suited up in just one game for the Okanagan Rockets this season. In the club's 3rd game of the season against the Vancouver NW Giants, DeMelo aggravated a previous shoulder injury. The decision was made to have immediate surgery and take care of the problem now.
"As an organization, we are obviously very disappointed that Sam DeMelo won't get a chance to be in our line-up this year." said Rockets general manager David Michaud. "We projected Sam to be a big part of our back end this year and we were thrilled when we added him to our line-up. It's important to remember that Sam is a 16 year old defenceman and the hope is that having the surgery now, will rectify the issue and allow him to continue on in hockey. It really is a case of short-term pain, for long-term gain."
With DeMelo's release, the Rockets added 16 year old defenceman from Vernon, Nick Higgs. "Nick played in 5 games with us already this season and we are very confident that we are bringing in a defenceman that can help us win hockey games" continued Michaud. "Nick adds a physical, stay at home element to our defence."
Higgs and the Rockets begin a six game home stand this weekend as they welcome the Kootenay Ice to Capital News Centre for games on Saturday and Sunday.