SUN Hockey Pool

Holl of a prospect for Flames

Patrick Holland is looking better and better for the Flames.

Patrick Holland is looking better and better for the Flames.

RANDY SPORTAK, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:08 AM ET

PENTICTON, B.C. — Patrick Holland looks more and more like a seventh-round steal for the Calgary Flames.

How he’s bloomed over the past 12 months is what teams dream of with their late-round draft choices.

Holland scored 22 goals for the Tri-City Americans last season and earned an invite to the Canada’s world junior team summer camp, which has him on the radar for the coming Christmas-time tournament to be held in Edmonton and Calgary.

His upswing showed fully with a pair of goals in Monday night’s 4-3 overtime loss to the Vancouver Canucks at the Young Stars Prospects Tournament in Penticton, B.C.

You can’t ignore results, even if both goals were a result of whacking away at rebounds while parked at the net.

“And they both kind of chipped over the goalie,” the 19-year-old from Lethbridge said. “Our line had good battle and got to the net.

“The puck came to me, and I got lucky.”

Luck isn’t what has made Holland and linemates Max Reinhart and Sven Baertschi look good during this tournament.

“I’ve liked him and Max on back-to-back nights,” Abbotsford Heat head coach Troy Ward said of Holland. “They’ve carried a lot of ice as young kids, but they’ve earned it. This is one of those camps where it can be a coming-out party for players. Both of those two have had a coming out.”

Not only have Holland and Reinhart shown skill, but they’ve played a determined game and been solid at both ends of the rink.

Michael Ferland scored the Flames’ other goal.

Nathan Longpre scored twice for the Canucks, while Kellan Tochkin and Antoine Roussel added singles. Roussel netted the winner in OT.

OFF THE GLASS

Yes, he surrendered four goals, but Flames goalie Joni Ortio looked better than he did in the 6-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks hopefuls Sunday night. “The game was pretty different,” Ortio said. “Much more shots from the git-go, and those situations are easier to get into the game.” Ortio did a better job on positioning and moving across the net, although a couple of goals were rebounds he’d like to have played better. “What we’re here to do is find out how guys respond to some difficult situations, and I think he responded well,” Ward said of the netminder who’ll likely be No. 2 in with the AHL’s Heat this season … T.J. Brodie was better in Game 2 than he was in the opener, but he was beat wide by Longpre on the play which resulted in the winning goal. Longpre’s shot attempted didn’t reach the net, in part because Brodie recovered just enough, and took a funny hop right to Roussel’s stick. “It’s one of those goals you want back. He shouldn’t have beaten me wide anyways — that’s my fault,” said Brodie, who had better find another level for main camp or his time in Calgary this fall will be short-lived.

OVERTIME

Holland is from Lethbridge but sheepishly admitted being an Edmonton Oilers fan as a youngster. “It’s not something I share too often, but it’s the way it is. Obviously, I’m cheering for the Flames, but it’s going to be in the back of my mind I grew up an Oilers fan.”

randy.sportak@sunmedia.ca


Videos

Photos