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Steele cuts coaching ties in Midland, joins Stayner Siskins

MIDLAND – Midland Flyers president Gerry Asselin thought he was clearing up a few simple details with head coach Dave Steele when the two exchanged words last week.

It turned out to be much more.

During the March 16 conversation, Steele told Asselin he would be leaving the team to join the coaching staff of the Stayner Siskins.

That touched off 72 hours of activity, leading to the Sunday naming of Keith Cyr as Midland’s head coach for the 2016-17 season. Cyr had served as the chief scout for the Flyers this past season.

“Dave informed us that he was going to go to Stayner and, in his words, he thought it was a better fit for him,” said Asselin. “Dave was a hardworking coach and very generous with his time, helping with different aspects of the team, so we wish him the best.”

Steele joined the Flyers two years ago. This past season, he guided the team to a third-place finish in the Georgian Bay Mid-Ontario Junior C Hockey League standings, compiling a 19-16-5 record.

Midland was eliminated in the first round of the playoffs in five games by a rejuvenated Penetang Kings squad.

Steele praised Asselin for the support he received in Midland.

“Gerry has been so fantastic and is so committed to the team,” he said. “There was no hard feelings…. (Stayner) was just a far better option for me.”

The dramatic improvement by the Flyers, who finished last the previous season, did not go unnoticed around the league.

“As soon as our season was over, I was approached by three teams that were interested in getting me involved in one capacity or another, be it general manager or head coach,” said Steele.

But even then, Steele said his intention was to stay in Midland.

“I had been in Midland and we had grown a far better club than what I had seen previously, but it was a ton of work,” said Steele.

The lack of a large volunteer base, plus limited funding, led to Steele doing far more than just coaching. Before long, he found he was adding scouting, mentoring, game-day operations and sponsorship.

“It became so much like work that it wasn’t worth the benefits of the fun part, that being coaching,” he said. “I’m a businessman and I run two companies, so my time is very valuable to me.”

Steele said previous dealings with Stayner general manager Richard Gauthier provided the comfort level he needed to accept the coaching position.

The Siskins, who compiled an 18-17-5 regular-season record this past season, were eliminated in six games in the opening round of the playoffs by the Caledon Golden Hawks.

Cancellations in Simcoe County and Meaford


K-Bay Wrestling has cancelled practice tonight

Town of Innisfil rec programs at Alcona Glen School have been cancelled

Midland Library is closing at 5 p.m.

YMCA Midland’s camp information night has been cancelled

Elmvale Skating club has cancelled tonight’s lessons and sessions

The Township of Oro-Medonte Administration Centre is closing at 3:30 p.m.

The Hurons Gymnastic Club is Midland has cancelled classes

Tonight’s service at Wasaga Beach United Church has been cancelled.

Town of Innisfil offices and all branches of the Innisfil Public Library are closed. Town essential roads, water and wastewater services will be provided.

The SCDSB has cancelled all gym permits

RMA Karate Centres has closed its south location. Students are welcome at the north location

Classes at Maizis Martial Arts Academy in Stayner are cancelled.

The Dance Academy in Barrie is closed.

Simcoe Community Services in Barrie and Orillia as well as Early Years Centres in Barrie and Bradford closed at noon

Blue Mountain Resort has closed all lifts.

All programs from 3:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Pauline Barratt Aquatics in Orillia have been cancelled.

The Orillia Music Studio has cancelled all classes

Moving Art Centre in Barrie will be closed tonight.

The Barrie Literacy Council and the Huronia Nurse Practitioner Led Clinic are closed.

The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit’s sexual health drop-in clinic at 80 Bradford St. Barrie is cancelled.

Town of New Tecumseth has cancelled it’s Bounce with Kangoo at 9:30 a.m. class, Fit for Life classes at 10:35 a.m. and 11:35 a.m., the Step It Up class at 9:30 a.m. and Chair Fitness class at 1 p.m.

Gilda’s Club Simcoe Muskoka will be closing at noon today. All program activities scheduled for today have been cancelled.


All buses in Simcoe County and Meaford/Thornbury have been cancelled. Schools are open.


Georgian College – The Orangeville, Muskoka and South Georgian Bay campuses are closed today. The Orillia and Barrie campuses and Collier St. Employment Centre will close at 1 p.m. Owen Sound and Midland will close at 2 p.m.

All classes and activities the Lakehead Orillia campus are cancelled as of 1 p.m.

The Co-Ed hockey game between the Marchmont PS Mustangs and Guthrie Public is postponed

Willow Landing Character Assembly has been postponed

The Simcoe County Elementary ice hockey program has been cancelled

The Harlem Globetrotters visit to Terry Fox ES has been cancelled

The Huron Park PS Grade 6 after-school numeracy program and the Huron Park PS talent show are cancelled.

The after-school numeracy program at Mundy’s Bay Public School is cancelled today.

Sevenoaks Academy, Meadow Creek Montessori School in Barrie and Hummingbird Montessori School are closed.