August 30, 2013

Tomahawks Get Closer to 25-man Roster

For the die-hard fans it seems like the offseason has taken forever to come to an end. While it's not quite over yet, you feel the excitement building, with one step left. That last step? Getting the roster down to the 25-man roster limit.

Alex Okicki, Photo by Tami Knopsnyder (Copyright)
Currently there are 28 active players on the Tomahawks' roster, which means the Tomahawks have to cut three players from their roster for the September 1st deadline.

Johnstown has 4 goalies, 14 forwards, and 10 defenseman still in camp.

The Tomahawks' have taken into account, how the players have performed in camp this year, during the preseason games, what they've done it the past, and what they predict they'll be able to do in the future for the team.

With all of those things in mind, the Tomahawks' have assigned goaltender, Brett Young to the Frederick Freeze. The Freeze play at the Tier III level.

Johnstown has high hopes for Young, and he will start be the starter for the Freeze at least for the time being. After each weekend, Young will return to Johnstown to practice with the team, and the coaching staff will continue to work and evaluate the "Young" goaltender.

The location of Frederick is ideal for the Tomahawks as he can come up to Johnstown if there is an injury to one of the goalies, or if one of the current goalies' game goes down hill.

This move means that Colin DeAugustine has made the Tomahawks' 25-man roster. DeAugustine was the only goaltender that the team tendered during the season last year, and was very impressive in training camp so far.

Sending Young to the Freeze puts the Tomahawks roster down to 27.

This past Tuesday, the team made another decision about the goaltending, as they released Colin Brennan. As we've said many times before, Brennan had a split season last year. In the first half of the season he was one of the toughest goalies to beat. In the second half of the season it was a completely different story.

In one of our articles for Juniorhockey.com we looked at Brennan's stats overall and vs. the North Division. This is something that the coaching staff also had in mind (you would think) when they came to their decision. Brennan, now cut, can go play for any team in any league.

There was a chance to possibly play for a D-3 school in 2013-2014, but Brennan decided to try and play for another junior team in his last year of eligibility.

For the foreseeable future, Alex Okicki becomes the Johnstown Tomahawks' starting goalie. His great leadership on and off the ice, and his all time record, 33-20-6, lead to this decision.

With Brennan's release, the roster then stands at 26 players.

The Tomahawks have one more move to make by Sunday.

Looking at the players that are still in Johnstown, it would appear that a defenseman might be removed from the current roster.

Johnstown had a tough time scoring last season, so you would think that the Tomahawks' would keep, at least for now, all their forwards, and then re-evaluate things after the NAHL Showcase.

All 24 teams in the NAHL participate in the Showcase, and with every team in the league in one location, it's a perfect time for coaches and GM's to talk to each other about possible trades.

This is something that the Tomahawks' might do, and have enough defenseman on their current roster to possibly make a move for another high end forward if early games suggests the team may need more scoring.

The last cut to get down to 25 players should be released by the team on Sunday or early next week.

Note: The Tomahawks have five returning players on defense and with five new players coming into the fold, that last cut will be difficult to make, and no player is safe.

So who do you think is going to be the last cut for the Tomahawks? Comment below.

We'll keep you updated as the news breaks.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I don't feel it will be a vet. I think a vet would be traded before being released. Don't know enough about the new players to pick one.

Anonymous said...

What happened to Casey Linkenheld, wasn't he their highly touted first draft pick?