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Sting Trade Vilmanis and Leblanc Brothers

Sarnia Sting General Manager Dylan Seca announced this morning that the Hockey Club has acquired  left wing Carter Kostuch and defencemen Alex Cajkovic along with the following picks in future Ontario Hockey League (OHL) Priority Selections; a 2nd round pick (NB) in 2027, 3rd round pick (PBO) in 2024, 4th round pick (SAG) in 2024, 4th round pick (NB) in 2025, 5th round pick (WSR) in 2025 and 5th round pick (BAR) in the 2026 in exchange for forward Sandis Vilmanis, forward Andrew LeBlanc and defencemen Jacob LeBlanc.  

 

On the trade Seca shares: 

 

“Today we’ve made a significant step towards building to our already strong young core. The players and draft picks acquired will help the hockey club climb back to a contending team in the very near future. We still also believe in our groups ability to be a playoff bound team.” 

 

Drafted in the first round (21st overall) by the North Bay Battalion in the 2023 OHL Priority Selection Carter Kostuch, the 5’11 right wing joins the club with 2 goals and 4 assists so far this season. 

 

“Carter Kostuch is a player we really liked in his draft year, he’s a first round pick for a reason. He’s skilled, quick and very competitive. His work ethic and character match our core values. We’re thrilled to welcome Carter and the Kostuch family to Sarnia.” 

 

Cajkovic was drafted by the Battalion in the 2nd round (115th overall) of the 2023 CHL Import Draft. The Slovakian native has currently tallied 12 assists and sits at a +9. 

 

“Alex is a very reliable puck moving defender who has been an important player in North Bay” says Seca, “We like his age, his good decision making and his international experience.” 

 

Sandis, Andrew and Jacob arrive to North Bay with a combined season total of 26 goals and 62 assists. Sandis Vilmanis joined the Sting in the 1st round (14th overall) of the 2022 CHL Import Draft. Andrew and Jacob LeBlanc were acquired in a trade with the Niagara IceDogs last June heading into the 2023-2024 season.  

 

“We thank the contributions of Sandis Vilmanis, who has been a valuable player for our club, we’ve seen his game evolve here at the Sting. We also have seen Andrew and Jacob resurrect their OHL careers under the guidance of our coaches. Both met the challenge of having a great off season and trusting our process. Their strong start created significant interest around our league, so much so it became apparent the return would be too valuable to turn down. We thank all for their trust and wish them well as they chase an OHL Championship.”  


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