Spartans Add US Goaltender

The Almaguin Spartans are happy to announce the addition of East Islip. New York native Steven Squillante. The 2004 netminder played from the Whitewater Kings (EOJHL) and Pembroke Lumber Kings (CCHL) last season.

Spartans General Manager David Forde had this to say about the addition of Squillante “We are very happy to have Steven joining our program. He has good size, a great work ethic and is driven to advance to the NCAA or ACHA.  Steven played his AAA hockey for the P.A.L. Islanders, which is a highly respected program in the United States. Last season Steven had a tough season on a Whitewater team that only won 5 of 42 games and is looking for a fresh start in Almaguin.

We feel Steven will push for playing time and can make further gains in his development with goaltending coach Andre Laperriere. We look forward to having Steven in our program and feel that he is a great fit for us, on and off the ice.”

Welcome to the Spartans Steven!!!


Major Local Addition

The Almaguin Spartans are thrilled to announce the addition of a very promising young defensemen in Ethan Boyes (2005). The Sundridge, Ontario native suited up for the North Bay Trappers U18 AAA last season that won an a NOHA championship. Boyes was a key member of the team’s d core, registering 5 goals and 14 assists for 19 points in 28 games.
Spartans General Manager David Forde “We are very excited to have Ethan joining our program. We always want talent in our program, but it is even better when it’s local talent. Ethan is a product of the North Bay Trappers AAA program, where he achieved a lot of success last season.
I know our coaching staff is thrilled to have Ethan in our program. They have worked with him over the years and are very confident in his abilities on and off the ice. He’s got great size at 6’2, enjoys playing a physical game, is a good skater, makes a good first pass and plays a defense first style of game.
I am confident that he will be able to step into our line up and contribute day 1 as a second pairing defensemen. Our defense coach Bryan Austin and Ethan have a great relationship and I think Bryan is going to be able to really prepare Ethan to be successful at the junior level and the college or professional level in the future.
Ethan has a great work ethic and a real desire to push himself to get better and that’s the type of players we want in our program. We want players that want to win and want play at the next level. Ethan fits that bill and is a player I am confident will play at the next level after his time with the Spartans.
Being a good player off the ice and in the community are also key factors in our program and we feel Ethan will be a big part of this being a local player that we know very well. He comes from a great family and has a desire to be one of the players taking the lead in the community activities we have planned throughout the season.
Welcome to the Spartans Ethan Boyes!!!

Spartans Announce the 2023-2024 Coaching Staff

The Spartans are thrilled to be returning to action this fall and wanted to start off the busy off season by announcing our coaching staff for the upcoming season. We have a lot of exciting news that we will be announcing over the coming weeks to let everyone know, so stay tuned to our social media pages. We will have announcements about some very talented players who have already committed for the upcoming season, golf tournament dates, billeting information, advertising information and further expansion to our youth and academy development programs.
Head Coach – Myles Pepin
Pepin makes his return behind the Spartans bench. The past 3 seasons Pepin has worked with the club as a skill development coach but is now making his much-anticipated return behind the bench. Under Pepin’s direction as the head coach, the club produced a 110-52-5 regular season record, a 2016 North Division playoff title, a 2018 Regular Season title and a 2018 Russell Cup.
Pepin is a player’s style coach, with incredible passion for the game, that sets the bar extremely high for our players on and off the ice. His teams are always highly competitive, disciplined and highly structured defensively. Pepin brings over 25 years of coaching experience to Spartans, having worked with elite athlete’s all over the world. Prior to coaching, Pepin played college hockey in Canada, professionally in England.
Associate Coach/Defense Coach – Bryan Austin
Austin is making his debut as a full-time associate coach behind the Spartans bench, but he is no stranger to Spartans fans. He played for the club from 2014 to 2018, amassing 222 points in 165 games, captaining the team for 3 of his 4 seasons and ended his Spartans career by leading the club to a 2018 Russell Cup. After finishing up with the Spartans, Austin went and played professionally in Sweden for Nynashamns IF.
Austin is very familiar with Pepin’s style of coaching having played under him as a youth and at the junior level, which will help further help develop a strong team culture from day 1. He will provide daily development to our young defensemen and provide a calming influence on the back end. Anyone that watched Austin play over the years could see he was skilled, but his hockey IQ was far above his peers. His mind for the game, ability to communicate and teaching skills are going to really help the overall development of everyone of our defensemen this season.
Associate Coach/Goalie Coach -Andre Laperriere
Laperriere has been with the Spartans since 2016 having worked for the club as a goalie coach, associate coach, head coach and was part of the coaching staff for the 2018 Russell Cup. In all, he has coached 12 years at the junior “A” level, with 6 of those being in a head coach role. Prior to starting his coaching career Laperriere was an elite goaltender in the NOJHL for 3 seasons, before playing professionally in the United States.
Laperriere will be working with our goaltenders on a regular basis in practice and with video work to help develop their ability to read the play, improve conditioning, positioning/style work and to ensure the goalies are educated on all of ne as the team’s defensive systems. His knowledge and experience add further skill to our staff and his ability to work with young goaltenders is really going to help them develop throughout the season. Elite goaltending is a major piece of any successful team, and we feel Laperriere is the perfect coach to help guide and push our young goaltenders.
Spartans General Manager David Forde had this to say about the club’s 2023-2024 coaching staff “I am really excited for the upcoming season and staff we have in place. I have known everyone of these guys for over 10 years and feel that they will work well as a group and get the most out of our guys. They have all been around the program for 5 plus years and know the culture and expectations we have here. All three were big parts in setting that culture and making Almaguin a great place to play.
In the coming weeks we will also be announcing some further additions to our staff, that will further aid our players in their development and make us a more complete program. Every season we try to improve our program and offer our players an even better experience. We feel that with the arena upgrades, new dressing room, new coaches’ office, the staff additions, and the plans we have for this season, that we are going to take our program to an even higher level.”

Spartans Add Former Pro Kenneth Latta as Head of Scouting and Player Development

The Almaguin Spartans are thrilled to announce the addition of Kenneth Latta as the club’s Head of Scouting and Player Development. Ken’s role with the club will be to scout and recruit elite level players from Europe to the club’s roster. He will work to assist Spartan players in advancing to college and professional hockey. Ken will also provide further guidance and work with management in ways to improve the club’s training, coaching and overall player experience.
Ken comes to the Spartans with significant playing and coaching experience. Originally from Thunder Bay, Ontario, Ken started his playing career in the Ontario Hockey League where he amassed 191 points and 585 penalty minutes in 237 games with the Soo Greyhounds and London Knights. Ken would play under Stanley Cup winning coach Terry Crisp and alongside two future hall of fame players in Paul Coffey and Ron Francis. His success in the OHL resulted in Ken being drafted 79th overall in 1981 to the Philadelphia Flyers.
After finishing up his junior career, Ken would play professionally in the IHL, AHL and ACHL in North America. During Ken’s time in the ACHL he would play in Pineridge, North Carolina with two well known hockey names from Sundridge-Steve Atwell and Steve Heittola. After 2 seasons in North America, Ken made his way overseas where he played 6 seasons in the Germany second and third division.
After Ken’s playing career, he moved into the coaching and management side of the game. Ken spent 14 years coaching and managing professional teams in the Germany3 and the DEL2. His last position was with the Blue Devils Weiden Germany3 where he was the head coach and general manager from 2017-2022.
Ken comes from a very well-known hockey family as well. His brother David played in the NHL for the Quebec Nordiques. His son Nick was the captain of the Sarnia Sting (OHL), played for the Germany U18 and U20 World Junior teams and has played professionally in the AHL and DEL. Ken’s other son Louis also played for the Sarnia Sting (OHL), the Germany National U18 team and professionally in the DEL2. Both boys won a DEL2 championship with Ravensburg Towerstars this season.
Spartans General Manager David Forde had this to say about the club’s most addition “I am really excited to have Ken coming on board with us. He is a highly respected hockey mind, who has a wealth of experience that can really help us grow as an organization. Ken’s primary role with the club will be scouting/recruitment in Europe, which will help us bring in elite talent to the program and make us a more competitive and skilled team.
His other role with the club will be helping our players advance to college and professional hockey after playing for the Spartans. Many organizations do a great job at recruiting players into their programs, but very few do a great job at working to help players advance from their programs. We have historically had one of the highest advancement rates in the GMHL year after year and I feel adding Ken and his incredible network of contacts is going to allow us to find our players even more post junior playing opportunities.
I have a lot of faith in Ken and can’t wait to start working with him. His experience and knowledge are going to really help our staff and myself develop professionally and help take our program to the next level. Ken will be coming over this month from Germany to meet our staff, community and get started in helping us build a contending team this fall. “
Welcome aboard Ken!!!

Advertising and Sponsorship Opportunities

The Almaguin Spartans are entering their 10th season of operations. The club has achieved incredible success over the years, advancing 53 players onto college and professional hockey, winning two North Division Playoff Titles, a Regular Season Title, and a 2018 League Championship. The Spartans 2018 Championship victory was the
first major hockey title won by a Central Almaguin area team since the early 1990’s and the first at this calibre since the famous Sundridge Beavers teams in the 1960’s. It was an incredible experience for our organization and the entire community that spring, seeing the Spartans win the Russell Cup in the South River Machar Arena in front of
over 700 fans.

During the past 9 seasons, Spartans Friday night home games are the biggest weekly event in Central Almaguin where our community comes together to socialize and cheer on the Spartans. We would truly like to thank the entire community and our over 65 advertisers/sponsors for their support, as the team’s success could not have been achieved without it.

Our 100 percent local ownership group of David Forde, Andrew Torrance and Andy Palfrey is fully committed to icing a highly competitive team every season, being active in the local community and giving back. Since our inception, we have been able to donate over $35,000 to local groups and initiatives and look to continue and build upon this again this season.

Our pricing options provide visibility all at a cheaper cost then all other
advertising sources available in the area. Advertising with the Spartans is a great way to get your business regional, national and international promotion and exposure.

Here are some of the highlights of exposure with the Spartans.

  • The Sundridge Strong Joly Arena, the home of the Spartans received a million dollar upgrade this past year and is the nicest facility in the Almaguin region.
  • The Spartans attendance is 250-400 fans per game in the regular season and 400-
    750 fans in the playoffs. The arena is also home to many other annual events.
  • The Spartans game day program with over 60 ads in high gloss, professional printing is provided to all fans free of charge at every game.
  • Our team Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have over 6000 followers combined. The articles on our social media sites have 2000-9000 views (depending on the article or advertisement).
  • Our team plays in numerous locations throughout Ontario and Quebec.

If you would like to discuss renewing your advertising or purchasing for the first time, feel free to contact Jenna Webster (Marketing and Sales) at 705-471-2218.


Latvian Defender Returns

The Almaguin Spartans are thrilled to announce the re-signing of Gustav Stikans. The 2003 born Latvian defensemen played for the Spartans in 2021-2022 and for the West Nipissing Lynx for the 2022-2023 season.
Spartans Head Coach Myles Pepin had this to say about the return of Stikans “We are excited to have Gus back with us this season. He is a hard-working, stay at home defensive defensemen that you can count on every night. He makes a good first pass, competes hard and is always worried about defense first. His style of play will really pair well with one of more offensive defensemen.
Gus is a player I have got to know very well over the past 2 years and a someone I know I can trust on and off the ice. He will play an important role within our leadership group this season and help set the culture with our team. We have high expectations of Gus, and we are confident he will be a big part of our team success this season.”
Welcome back Gustav!!!

FPHL Affiliation Agreement

The Almaguin Spartans are thrilled to announce that the club has inked an affiliation agreement with the Elmira River Sharks of the Federal Prospects Hockey League, which is a 11-team minor professional league with teams in the Midwestern, Southern and Northeastern United States.
Spartans General Manager David Forde had this to say about the major announcement for the organization “We are very happy to have entered into an affiliation agreement with the Elmira River Sharks. The vision they have for their organization is in line with the vision we have in Almaguin, which is icing a highly competitive hockey club, while developing players at the same time to advance to the next level. For us it is to advance players to college and professional hockey for them it is to advance players to the ECHL.
Elmira, New York is a tremendous minor pro market having housed the Elmira Jackals of the UHL and ECHL from 2000-2017, where they averaged over 3000 fans per game and won 2 regular season titles. For our elite level players that perform well, getting the opportunity to go to Elmira to get their first experience of professional hockey is going to be an amazing experience and opportunity.
We feel this affiliation partnership will really benefit both organizations and help our program and its commitment to developing and advancing players to the next level. In 8 seasons of operation, we have advanced 53 players on to major junior, college and professional hockey. This affiliation partnership provides us with another great avenue to advance our players on to professional hockey.”