Get to Know the Newest Wildcats

GM Brandon Benedict was busy last week as the 2024 offseason officially kicked-off.


The Wildcats first move came as soon as the trade period opened on June 1, acquiring defenceman Jake Beardsmore from the Truro Bearcats as the final piece in a previously completed trade last season. The veteran defenceman is entering his third season in the MHL after playing for both the South Shore Lumberjacks, and Truro Bearcats. “I would say I’m a 2-way puck moving defenceman” says Beardsmore when asked what Wildcats fans can expect to see from him this season. “I like to get get my forwards the puck, and jump into the rush to make an impact offensively, all while playing shutdown defence at the same time. Valley can expect me to bring leadership, along with a full effort every game.”

Beardsmore is excited to get to Berwick and hit the ground running this season. “I have always been a fan of playing in Berwick. Having played here all through minor hockey, it’s always been a great atmosphere.”

When asked what he enjoys doing away from the rink, Beardsmore says “I play in the East Coast Lacrosse League for the Dartmouth Bandits. To get away from contact sports, I enjoy golfing as I am a member/employee at Eagle Crest Grandview at home in Cole Harbour.” As for what his future plans are “I’d see myself going to school to become a history teacher as I’m very fascinated with the history of the World Wars.”

“I’m grateful to have been given the opportunity to play in the Valley, and am looking forward to making the most of it!”


Shortly after acquiring Beardsmore, the Wildcats made a splash, acquiring 2023 8th overall pick Brady Burke from Campbellton. As one of the top scorers in the NSU18MHL this past season, Burke looks to build on his 2023-24 campaign as he makes the jump to junior hockey. “I am a very energetic player with skill on both sides of the ice.” says Burke. ” Wildcats fans can expect a skilled and physical player on the ice, and someone who is eager to give back and volunteer within the community”.

Burke will be attending Acadia in the fall, studying commerce. “Outside of the rink, I enjoy spending time with family and friends. I’m easy to get along with, and enjoy listening to music, and going to the gym.”

“I am very excited to join the Wildcats organization, and am looking forward to getting started and helping bring the team success.”


The very next day, the Wildcats made another trade, acquiring veteran forward Nathan Casey and a 5th round pick from Fredericton. Casey, who has experience in the QMJHL, is coming off his first full season in the MHL, suiting up in 37 regular season games for the Red Wings.

The Grand Falls, NL native, and son of former Acadia Axemen forward Brian Casey is happy to be in the area. “I am very excited about coming to the Wildcats organization.” says Casey. “I have been to the Valley on some occasions and think it’s a perfect place to live. My dad speaks highly of the area having played for the Axemen in the 90’s.”

When asked what he bring to the team, Casey responded “I am a player I feel who is able to bring a lot of speed to the lineup and push the pace. I want to play fast on offence, as well as be very responsible in our own end.

“In my down time, I like to focus on my academics. My plan is to attend Acadia University, and pursue a kinesiology degree.” Says Casey regarding what he enjoys doing away from the rink.

“I am excited about this new chapter, and am committed to helping the Wildcats have a lot of success both on and off the ice.”


There’s a new goalie in the organization! The final move of the week was the signing of goaltender George Foti. The 5’11 Laval, QC native started 15 games last season for the Ontario Hockey Academy’s U18 team, and is excited to arrive and get started.

When asked for his excitement level about making the jump to the MHL, Foti says “I am very excited about joining the Wildcats. I have only heard great things about the organization, and can’t wait to get things started. I am looking forward to meeting everyone in the Valley, and can’t wait to play in front of the Valley’s great fans that I have heard about!”

Foti is an exciting goalie to watch between the pipes. When asked to describe his game, Foti says “The way I play is a mix of modern and old school goaltending techniques. The things I do best are be able to make those big saves in big moments of games.” Foti also is confident with the puck on his stick. “I am very confident when playing the puck, helping my team with quicker, easier zone exits.”

“Wildcats fans can expect a goalie that doesn’t quit on any play, or in any game regardless of the situation.”


The Wildcats will add more pieces to their already deep prospect pool this Saturday at the 2024 MHL Entry Draft. The draft begins at 10am with the early rounds televised live on Eastlink TV (channel 10/610). You can follow the entirety of the draft pick-by-pick online at