By Nick Patterson Herald writer
Don Hay’s place in the pantheon of Western Hockey League coaches was already secure. But Friday night the Vancouver Giants bench boss further solidified his legendary status.
Hay became just the third coach in league history to reach the 600-win mark when the Giants defeated the Kamloops Blazers 6-2 in Kamloops.
Hay, who’s in his 15th season in the WHL and 10th with the Giants, joined Ken Hodge (742 wins) and Lorne Molleken (603) in the exclusive 600-win club.
“It was a very special moment to be a part of,” Vancouver captain Dalton Thrower told the Vancouver Province. “He’s a coach who’s been around a long time and he’s had some very good teams.
“It’s a big accomplishment for him and we’re all proud to help him achieve that.”
Hay has done it all during his WHL coaching career, which includes stints with the Giants, Kamloops Blazers and Tri-City Americans. He’s won three league championships and three Memorial Cups, twice won the Dunc McCallum Trophy as the WHL’s Coach of the Year, and coached Canada to the gold medal at the 1995 World Junior Hockey Championships. He was inducted into the British Columbia Hockey Hall of Fame in 2008.
Hay’s 600th win couldn’t have come in a more appropriate location, as Kamloops is where he got his WHL coaching start. He guided the Blazers from 1992-95, winning both the league championship and the Memorial Cup in both 1994 and 1995.
Hay’s 600th victory came in his 1,046th game. Hodge’s 742 wins came in 1,411 games, while Molleken’s 603 wins came in 1,066 games.
Around the WHL
Saskatoon called up 17-year-old center and former Everett Silvertip Ty Mappin for the team’s 4-3 home loss to Brandon on Saturday. Mappin reporting to the Blades means Everett, which dealt his rights at the trade deadline, will receive at least a seventh-round pick in the 2015 bantam draft. That pick can be upgraded to a fifth-rounder if Mappin is with the Blades at an unspecified date next season. … Mathew Dumba made his debut with the Portland Winterhawks in Friday’s 8-2 victory over Moose Jaw. The star 19-year-old defenseman’s rights were acquired from Red Deer in December while Dumba was still with the NHL’s Minnesota Wild, and his arrival was further delayed because of illness following the World Junior Hockey Championships. … Portland’s Derrick Pouliot was named the WHL Player of the Week. The 19-year-old defenseman had one goal and four assists as the Winterhawks went 2-0.
Points—Mitch Holmberg (Spokane) 84; goals—Holmberg 42; assists—Nicolas Petan (Portland) 52; penalty minutes—Ryan Rehill (Kamloops) 133; wins—Jordon Cooke (Kelowna), Tristan Jarry (Edmonton) 27; goals against average—Coleman Vollrath (Victoria) 1.96; save percentage—Vollrath .942.
Check out Nick Patterson’s Silvertips blog at http://www.heraldnet.com/silvertipsblog, and follow him on Twitter at @NickHPatterson.