Thursday, May 25, 2006

IceDiggers take Steingraber second overall

The Alpena IceDiggers held the second overall pick in Tuesday's NAHL Entry Draft and used it to select defenseman Christian Steingraber.

Steingraber (pictured) is a 1989 birth year who spent last season skating in the USHL with the Clark Cup champion Des Moines Buccaneers. He skated in 21 regular-season games and three playoff games.

The 6-foot, 180-pound Steingraber is a native of Oregon, Ohio, and played his minor hockey in Detroit, winning a national title with HoneyBaked.

"I knew that a player of Christian's caliber would not have lasted long in the draft, so when we had the chance to take him, we jumped on it," Alpena coach-GM Kenny Miller said. "I have watched him grow as a player through the years and I know he will make an impact right away for our team.

"Christian is definitely a guy that can, and will, step in and make a difference every time he touches the ice. I know we are not only getting a great player, but we are also getting a great kid who comes from a great family."

The IceDiggers also selected forwards Jimmy McCusker and Marco Ruggeri during the draft. McCusker played last season with the Compuware midget AAA team where he was the team captain.

"Jimmy is a guy who will give us energy," Miller said. "And I feel he will score some big goals for us."

Ruggeri spent this past season with the Michigan state champion Belle Tire midget AAA squad where he was teammate of current tendered players Evan West and Logan Toohey.

"Marco is going to be a big time player for us," said Miller. "He is a game breaker."

The IceDiggers are hosting their first open camp of the summer in Toledo this weekend and any player that is still interested in attending should contact the Ice House main office at (419) 476-4690 for more details.

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