The Brampton Battalion are a junior ice hockey team in the Ontario Hockey League. Battalion Headquarters: Brampton Battalion Hockey Club, 7575 Kennedy Rd. South, Brampton, Ontario L6W 4T2 Phone: (905) 874-2393 Email: email@example.com
. Brampton native Stuart McComish has served as the Battalion's website co-ordinator since Februrary 2000. Visit the Brampton Battalion
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Brampton - Scott Tanski lingered on the ice, stick raised, saluting the fans of the Brampton Battalion one last time.
Right winger Tanski had just played his final Ontario Hockey League game, a 4-1 loss to the Niagara IceDogs last Thursday night that gave Niagara a four-game sweep of an Eastern Conference quarterfinal.
“It’s hard to wrap your head around it,” said Tanski, who was joined at centre ice by his two fellow overagers, left winger Stephon Thorne and goaltender Cody St. Jacques. “It feels like yesterday that I came to a camp here for the first time. It was a pretty emotional time, and I’ve enjoyed every moment here.”
A 12th-round pick in the 2006 OHL Priority Selection, Tanski joined the Battalion for the 2007-08 season and played 219 games over four years, producing 53 goals and 80 assists for 133 points, 17th on the club’s all-time list. He skated in 41 playoff games, tying the club mark held by Brad Albert and Cody Hodgson. Tanski contributed six goals and 12 assists for 18 points in those games, tied for seventh in playoff scoring with Raffi Torres and Ryan Oulahen.
“I’ve had a great opportunity to play in the OHL and have some success,” said Tanski, a Burlington, Ont., resident who turns 21 on April 19. “I’ve met a lot of great guys and had a lot of great memories, and it’s something you don’t really realize until you sit back and look at it. My time here made me a better person and a better hockey player.”
The 2010-11 season was Tanski’s best offensively as he led the Troops in scoring with 18 goals and 29 assists for 47 points in 67 games. In 2008-09, when the Battalion won the Eastern Conference title and advanced to the OHL Championship Series against the Windsor Spitfires, Tanski registered 18 goals and 46 points, skating regularly on a line with Thorne and centre Matt Duchene.
“That season I was a secondary-scoring guy,” said Tanski, an alternate under captain Thorne this season. “If I wasn’t scoring, we had lots of other guys who could do that in every game, and that’s one of the reasons we were such a good team.
“For the last two seasons I’ve been looked at as a go-to guy, and that’s what you want. You want coaches to have high expectations for you. I did the best I could. I tried to take a little bit from all the guys I played with to help me become a better player.”
Tanski’s efforts made him a fan favourite and were recognized in polls of conference coaches over the last three seasons. He finished second in the most improved player category in 2008-09, third in best skater balloting in 2009-10 and third in the hardest worker category this season.
“I’ve had to work for everything throughout my hockey career. I like it that way, because when you achieve it means a lot more. I can say I put 100 percent into every game I played and I’m happy with the results. Even though we never won a championship here, I gave it everything I had.
“I’m not the most skilled guy, so I had to stand out in some way. It doesn’t take anything to work hard. You need to practise to be a skilled hockey player, but a solid work ethic is something that comes if you care and believe in yourself.”
Tanski sees good things ahead for the Battalion, which had a number of rookies in its ranks this season as it finished sixth in the conference.
“Even though this season didn’t end the way we wanted it to, I can see this team winning a championship down the road and I still feel I’ll be a part of that from what I hope I was able to pass on to the younger guys.”
Tanski twice was invited to attend the rookie camp of the National Hockey League’s Columbus Blue Jackets. He advanced to the main camp in 2009 and has a career in pro hockey in his sights.
“It’s time to start thinking about where I go from here. There are a lot of options, because once one door closes another one opens. My first goal is to play in the NHL, and I’m still aiming to play professionally. If I have to go another route, I’ll go to school.”