Prince George, B.C. – The Prince George Cougars Hockey Club is proud to announce it has signed 2004-born defenceman Keaton Dowhaniuk and 2004-born forward Koehn Ziemmer to Western Hockey League Standard Player Agreements.
Dowhaniuk, the third-overall selection and Ziemmer, the fourth-overall selection at the 2019 WHL Bantam Draft were the Cougars’ two first-round selections.
“We are thrilled to have these two in the fold,” said General Manager and Head Coach Mark Lamb. “We are in a development cycle that is trending upwards and these two will be key pieces to the core of our team that we feel will be very competitive in the coming years.”
The Cougars used their first pick, third overall, to select Dowhaniuk from the OHA Edmonton Bantam Prep team of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League (CSSHL). Widely considered the top defenceman in the 2019 WHL Bantam Draft, last season the Sherwood Park, Alta. product played in 25 games for OHA Edmonton where he collected 35 points (8G-27A) to go with 34 penalty minutes and led his team in defensive scoring. The 5-foot-10, 160-pound Dowhaniuk was named the CSSHL Bantam Prep Division Top Defenceman and was named an Alberta Cup All-Star after he posted four points (2G-2A) in five games with Team Black.
“He can play the game any way you want him to play; he’s a smoothing-skating puck-mover,” said Cougars Director of Scouting Bob Simmonds. “He brings a physical element too and he’s only going to grow.”
Prince George used their second pick, fourth overall, to select Dowhaniuk’s teammate at OHA Edmonton in Ziemmer. The Mayerthorpe, Alta. native led OHA Edmonton in scoring, as he compiled 76 points (37G-39A) in just 29 games and finished second in scoring in the CSSHL Bantam Prep Division. The 5-foot-10, 179-pound Ziemmer also played at the Alberta Cup, where he tallied four points (2G-2A) in five games for Team Grey.
“Koehn is a highly-skilled goal scorer with a versatile offensive package,” commented Simmonds. “He’s a constant producer and will be counted on to do the same at the WHL level.”
Both Dowhaniuk and Ziemmer took part in Hockey Alberta’s Under-16 Provincial Camp in Red Deer, Alta. last week. The Under-16 Summer Camp is part of an evaluation process for Team Alberta’s roster for the 2019 WHL Cup in the fall.
The additions of Dowhaniuk and Ziemmer mean that 20 of the 22 first-round selections from the 2019 WHL Bantam Draft have now signed WHL Standard Player Agreements.