December 1, 2016 2:12 pm

Kelowna Rockets make a trade with the Regina Pats

Keith Hershmiller photo from WHL website

The Kelowna Rockets are switching up their roster.

The Rockets have acquired 19-year-old blueliner James Hilsendager and forward Erik Gardiner, 17, in exchange for defenceman Jonathan Smart.

Hilsendager was in his third season with the Pats, while Gardner had only a couple of games with the team before being sent down to the Humboldt Broncos of the SJHL.

The trade comes after word the Rockets would be without veteran blueliner Gordie Ballhorn for six weeks because of an upper body injury.

“With the loss of Gordie, we felt we needed to get another older defenceman in here and Jonathan Smart was the player Regina wanted,” Bruce Hamilton, president and general manager of the Kelowna Rockets said in a press release. “This brings us some depth on defense with a veteran player. With Erik, he has 10 goals in the SJHL as a 17-year-old and was caught in a numbers game in Regina. We look forward to him being a player for us in the future.”

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