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.