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Wildcats coach wants to develop team for championship contention

By Regis Phillips Jan 2, 2024 | 11:38 AM

The Moncton Wildcats have seen success so far this season, according to the team’s head coach.

At the start of 2024, the Wildcats are second in the Maritimes Division behind Halifax and fifth overall in the QMJHL standings.

The Baie-Comeau Drakkar currently lead the league with 64 points, compared to Moncton’s 49 points.

“As long as we get better and we play to our potential and these kids learn and battle for me, I want to win every game,” said head coach Daniel Lacroix.

Lacroix served as an assistant coach with the Wildcats from 2002 to 2006 and was also interim head coach for a partial season during that time.

The team would reach the 2006 Memorial Cup final, losing to the Quebec Remparts.

Lacroix left the CHL and became an assistant coach for NHL teams and European teams and returned to Moncton in 2019. After being named head coach, Lacroix has guided the team to playoff success and wants to win the Memorial Cup, but knows player development is needed for the rest of the season.

“We’re also a young team where we need to keep in mind that we need to develop this young talent, but if you ask the team if the coach wants to win the championship the answer is yes,” said Lacroix.

Moncton will be on the road for the first three games of 2024, playing Halifax, Saint John, and Acadie-Bathurst.

They’ll play the first home game of the New Year on Saturday, Jan. 13, versus the Rimouski Oceanic.