Nanaimo Clippers forward Kyler Kovich has been named the club’s next team captain. (News Bulletin file photo)

Nanaimo Clippers choose Kovich to be next team captain

Highly scouted forward will be entering his third full BCHL season

Just don’t call him Kovich-18.

The Nanaimo Clippers announced that forward Kyler Kovich, who has worn jersey No. 18 the last two seasons, will be the next team captain.

Kovich was a top-liner for the Clippers this past season, tallying 18 goals and 39 points in 51 games. The 6-foot-1, 185 pounder from Coquitlam made Team Canada West for the World Junior A Hockey Challenge in December and was also invited to the Canadian Junior A Hockey League Prospects Game. He is ranked by NHL Central Scouting and eligible for the draft in June.

Clippers coach Darren Naylor said in a club press release that it was an easy decision to choose Kovich as team captain for next season and said having a veteran in that role will help continue the team’s “successful transition.”

“Kyler is a natural leader who will lead by example every time he touches the ice,” Naylor said. “He is an extremely hard worker on and off the ice and a player who takes the game seriously while always looking to improve his game.”

Kovich replaces Ethan Scardina, who served one season as captain and will now be heading to the U.S. to play NCAA Div. 1 hockey at Bowling Green State University in the fall.

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