September 19, 2017

Solensky Officially Back; Quetell Returns to Johnstown; Northeast Series Highlights; NAHL Showcase

In this post, we’re going to take a look back at the three games Johnstown played against Northeast and share video highlights of all three games. We’ll also then take a look ahead at the NAHL Showcase, which starts tomorrow and will see every team in the league play four games in four days.

But before we get to all of that, there’s two roster moves that we want to talk about involving the Johnstown Tomahawks. The first, Samuel Solensky is now officially back with the team and should be in the lineup at some point during the Showcase.

Solensky was back home in Michalovce, Slovakia taking care of his school work, which caused him to miss out on Tomahawks’ training camp earlier this month.

Solensky, played half the season with the Tomahawks’ last year, before being recalled to the Youngstown Phantom. In 31 games with Johnstown, he scored 23 points (8 goals, 15 assists). Even though he only appear in half of Johnstown’s games, he finished 9th on the team in scoring.

In Youngstown, Solensky  saw limited action and only played in 9 regular season games. He did not record any points.

After Johnstown lost it’s top eight goal scores from last season, it’s nice to get back a proven scorer to this Tomahawks’ young lineup.

Solensky isn’t the only player that’s returning to the Tomahawks’ lineup. Yesterday, Andrew Quetell was returned to the Tomahawks by the USHL’s Central Illinois Flying Aces.

Quetell, in 59 games, scored 1 goal, assisted on 12 others, while having a plus- of 12.

This now gives Johnstown three returning defenseman. Quetell rejoins Trouba and Iehle.

Quetell is a 1998 birth year player.

Quetell is listed to be wearing number 54 this year.

Johnstown vs Northeast Thoughts and Highlights

The Tomahawks have started off the season 1-2, after dropping the first two games at Northeast, before coming back in game three to get their first win of the season.

In game one, the Tomahawks' looked like the young team they are. They didn't look up to speed and you could blame it on not having any preseason games, or just the lack of expernice of the players playing at this Tier II level.

While the Tomahawks' never carried played, the game was within reach the whole sixty minutes, as Johnstown lost, 4-2. The fourth goal was an empty netter.

As you'll see from the highlights, if not for two bad defensive breakdowns, the Tomahawks could have pulled one out and won this game.

Game two, Johnstown lost 5-1. Johnstown didn't have much going on in this game. Below are the highlights, or in this case, the lowlights.

In game three, things didn't start the way that the team would have liked, as Johnstown fell behind, 2-0.  It look like the Tomahawks were going to drop their third straight game.

Then the turning point in the game happened. Johnstown's Cade Groton had the puck by Northeast's bench, when he was hit from behind by Ryan Rowland (might have been Mike Egan) and Chris Trouba rushed in to stick up for his fallen teammate.

Seconds after Trouba's fight, the Tomahawks got on the board with their first goal. About two minutes later, Johnstown scored again.

Before the fight, Johnstown wasn't doing much with the puck. After the fight, all the momentum and puck possion was coming from Johnstown. The team started to look like the Tomahawks we know.

Johnstown would get the game-winning goal in the third period by newcomer, Andray Andrew.

Here's the highlights.

NAHL Showcase

The Showcase begins tomorrow. Here's what the Tomahawks' schedule will look like:

9-20 Topeka 7pm
9-21 Janesville 1:15pm
9-22 Aberdeen 11:30 am
9-23 Odessa 10 am

All start times are CDT.

Last season the Tomahawks finished the Showcase with a 3-1 record.

The Tomahawks' all time record at the NAHL Showcase is, 8-6-2.

September 12, 2017

Win Free Tickets to the Home Opener

We posted this on Facebook about a week ago, but figured it would make sense to write something about it on the blog, as well.

We want to get as many people signed up for the new message board ( as possible, so why not give you the readers some more incentive to do so.

If we reach 500 registered users by October 10th 2017 we'll give away four free tickets to the Tomahawks' home opener.

The rules are very simple. Once you make an account you're automatically entered to win. Each user has the ability to win one (1) free ticket.

We will randomly select four user names on the 10th and those will be the winners. If a winner cannot make the game, we will select another name as a replacement.

So please sign-up if you haven't already. Also tell your hockey loving friends to sign up too.

We hope to reach 500 registered users and think it's an obtainable goal, but even if we don't get that many in the next few weeks, we'll still give away some tickets. Here's the breakdown.

150 users - 1 free ticket giveaway

250 users - 2 free ticket giveaway

400 users - 3 free ticket giveaway

Making a message board account is free and always will be. It takes less than two minutes to set everything up.

So far, as of this posting, we currently have 42 members. Those members are already eligible for the giveaway.

Tomorrow the regular season get's underway as the Tomahawks are on the road taking on the Northeast Generals at 2pm. You can watch the game on

Now's the perfect time to chat with other fans about the season and everything Tomahawks.

September 11, 2017

Johnstown A Perfect Fit For Newcomer Joey Baez

Joey Baez has been playing the game of hockey since he was three-years-old.  After all the years, and different levels of play, this past February he signed a tender with the Johnstown Tomahawks.

“I wanted to get prepared for college hockey. I wanted to experience junior hockey,” said Baez.  To do that he believed that Johnstown would be the perfect fit for him.

Baez is a fast skating forward, who during training camp this preseason has found ways to get around even the most mobile skating defenseman. Along with his speed, he has the scoring touch that makes his game even more deadly when he’s out on the ice.

“I see myself as a playmaker and goalscorer,” said Baez.

That he is. Last season, Baez played for the Skipjacks Hockey Club U16 team. In 27 games, he scored 22 goals, 29 assists, which gave him 51 points on the season. The year prior to last, he also played for the Skipjacks U16 club and was a point-a-game player, scoring 24 points in 24 games.

His ability to score goals will be a welcome for the Tomahawks, as they’ve seen players like, Nick Bruce and Filips Buncis, move on to the college level. Also players like Dalton Hunter and Donovan Ott who’ve moved up to the USHL for this upcoming season.

Joey Baez is one of the few players entering training camp this week that already has a college commitment. Baez committed to the University of Alabama-Huntsville back in November of last year. Alabama-Huntsville is a D1 school.

One of the most famous players to come out of Alabama-Huntsville is current NHLer, Cam Talbot.

Baez’s personal goals for the season are all about doing anything in his power to get the Tomahawks a Robertson Cup Championship.

“Just playing really well with the team. I really want to get along with the guys. I just want to be a good teammate,” said Baez.

September 8, 2017

Kraemer Ready to Build On Last Year's Success

Last season, the Johnstown Tomahawks found themselves with several players out of the lineup due to injury and suspension. The Tomahawks needed to add a few players to their roster so they could compete without being extremely shorthanded.

One of those players that got a call from the Tomahawks was Pittsburgh native, Roman Kraemer.

Kraemer played for the Pittsburgh Penguins Elite U18 team. In total, he would see action in 32 games for his U18 team, scoring 42 points. When he joined the Tomahawks his point production continued, even at the higher NAHL level.

“He was really dynamic,” Mike Letizia said about Kraemer’s play.

Kraemer, in total, played 6 games for the Tomahawks, scoring 4 points. He was also on Johnstown’s playoff roster and appeared in all three games. In those three games he registered two assists.

“It was a great experience, going from U18 to junior hockey. (It) was a big step,” Kraemer said after finishing another high-paced training camp practice, run by head coach Mike Letizia, on Thursday.

Kraemer is one of a few players returning from last year’s Tomahawks team.

Looking back at last year’s call up, Kraemer was impressed with the differences that came from playing in U18 hockey and coming up to the Tier II NAHL level.

“There’s a lot more speed in junior hockey and a lot more hitting. There’s a lot more skilled guys. Every player is a good player. You don’t see a weak spot on any team,” Kraemer said.

The goal for the entire team is to make the playoffs and then make a solid run to win the Robertson Cup. Personally, Kraemer wants to improve his game even more and be a go-to player on the ice.

“(I’ll) try and move the puck as much as I can. Just be a playmaker for the team,” said Kraemer.

With the team losing seven of it’s top scores during the off-season, Mike Letizia believes that Kraemer can be a player that can help make up that loss.

“He looks like he’s primed to take a pretty elevated role on the team this year and we expect him to do that for sure,” said Letizia.

September 1, 2017

Tomahawks - In the News #1

The new hockey season is getting closer by the day. The Tomahawks have been back in town for the last week, attending training camp to get ready for the season.

There's been a lot of articles and news about the team in the past week, and if you missed any of it, no need to worry. We've got you covered. Below are all the stories you need to make sure you check out. 

These are from the Tomahawks' official website, The Tribune Democrat, and our blog.


P.S. If you haven't yet, make sure you join our new message board. We hope it'll be the go to place on game days (and every other day too). Singing up and using the service is free and always will be. You can find the message board via the link at the top of this page or go to it directly at

The Johnstown Tomahawks Official Website 

Features info about returning players, some new players, and a ton of quotes.

Purpura has his eyes set on the starting goalie role. Features quotes from Purpura himself.

Trouba talks about stepping up into a leadership role this upcoming season. Features quotes from Trouba.

Info about Mike Letizia's two principles and how the players are looking in the first week of camp. Once again, filled with quotes.

Tribune Democrat Articles

The Tomablog

We take a look at why for the first time in team history the Tomahawks have no preseason games to play.

The Tomahawks parted was with a few players that were set to return this upcoming season. Find out who they are in this article.

We've added a second site to The Tomablog brand. 

August 30, 2017

No Preseason Games This Year for the Tomahawks

The Johnstown Tomahawks are entering their sixth NAHL season, and for the first time in their history, they will not play any preseason games.

The main reason for this is the way their regular season schedule falls.

The Tomahawks usually play two or three preseason games to fine tune things before the regular season gets underway. One of those opponents they usually battle against is the USHL's Youngstown Phantoms.

No players are allowed to officially report to their USHL teams, and start team activities until September 11, 2017. The Tomahawks first regular season game is September 13, 2017 in the Boston area vs the Northeast Generals.

The twelve-hour long bus trip to Massachusetts means that the team will be departing Johnstown the day before on September 12, 2017. Youngstown would only be in camp by that point for one day.
Philadelphia (formerly Aston) doesn't start their camp until the end of this week. The following week they have an exhibition game vs New Jersey.

This would leave Johnstown only with Northeast, and having to deal with travel time and playing them to start the season three times in a row, doesn’t have any positive upsides to have a preseason game against them as well.

On top of that, the Tomahawks play the first six weeks of the season straight without any bye weekends. This includes two trips to Boston and one trip to the NAHL showcase.

Having no preseason games might help keep the team a little more rested then if they were playing games this weekend and the next.

"A little bit different but the guys know that. They know our process. They know how important it is to take advantage of training camp. We’re just gonna go with it," said head coach Mike Letizia.

The team will have an inter-squad game this weekend, (September 2, 2017) at Galactic Ice in Altoona at 4pm. The event is for season ticket holders and will be proceeded by the annual Altoona Curve baseball game outing.

What do you think of the team not having any preseason games this year? Think it'll help or hurt the team? Give your thoughts over at the message board, or comment below.

August 29, 2017

Off-season Veteran Moves

During the off-season, the Tomahawks made two player trades and parted ways with two other players. This has come to light now that training camp for the upcoming season has started.

The players that were traded:

Evan Somoza to Odessa.

Last year the Tomahawks acquired Somoza from the Northeast Generals. In 21 games for the Tomahawks, Somoza had 13 points.

Joshua Biasillo to Springfield.

Last year Biasillo played in 56 games and had 15 points. He was the only full time player for the Tomahawks that had single digit penalty minutes; 6.

The Tomahawks also parted ways with Forwards Josh Norman and Riley Doyon. Both players have joined Springfield of the NAHL as well.

Norman appeared in 42 games and scored 12 points.

Doyan, the younger brother of former Tomahawks, Drew Doyon, played in 28 games and posted 12 points.

Continue the conversation on the message board -

August 28, 2017

Interaction the Goal of New Feature

The Johnstown Tomahawks are about to get their sixth season in the NAHL underway in a few weeks. There's nothing better than hockey season, in our opinion. With The Tomablog coming back in full swing for the 2017-2018 season, we not only wanted to bring back our perspective on things, but wanted to add something fresh.

Well, today we hope to do just that. The Tomablog has been mainly a one-man operation offering the views of just one fan. Facebook is a great way to interact with other fans, but it's not the best place to hold open conversations with large groups of fans, where anyone and everyone can join in at any moment.

In this thinking, we've decided to add a second website to The Tomablog. This second site will be a place where fans can interact with other fans, to talk about Tomahawks hockey, the NAHL, and just hockey in general. The best way to do this is with a message board/forum. And that's exactly what we're launching today.

The new message board is linked at the top of the blog, or you can access it directly at

To interact and become part of the new community, you have to register, though if you just want to read what everyone is talking about, no registration is needed. With that said, we encourage you to become a member. Joining is FREE (and you'll never have to pay anything to use the board) and it takes less than a minor penalty to make an account.

Back in the day, the Johnstown Chiefs had a message board and it was a great place for fans to come together and share breaking news, rant, prepare for upcoming games, etc.

The Johnstown Tomahawks haven't had anything like that, till now.

So what do you say? Training camp starts this week. The first regular season game is September 13th, when the Tomahawks visit the Northeast Generals for a three-game series.

Hope to see you guys over at the message board!

Also, give us your feedback on the new forum. Think we should add something to make it even better? We'd love to know your thoughts.

Let's Go Hawks'!

August 24, 2017

New Content Coming for 2017-2018 and New Feature

Hello, Hawks' nation. It's been a while since the last post here on The Tomablog. Wanted to let everyone know that the site is coming back for the 2017-2018 season and we'll be adding a new feature that we think everyone is going to love and have a blast with.

What is it? Well, can't tell you just yet, but feel free to leave your guess as a comment. Let's see what die-hard Tomahawks' fan can get the right answer.

The Tomahawks season is just a few weeks away!

- Jon