Thursday, June 14, 2012

Muskegon main camp gets underway

After two days of invite camp action, Muskegon Lumberjacks main camp has begun at L.C. Walker Arena.

The Lumberjacks are headed into their third season in the Tier I United States Hockey League, the top American league for developing NCAA and NHL talent. The 2012-13 version of the club will be largely determined by what happens this week.

Several free agents have advanced from invite camp, which ended Tuesday night. They are now joined by nine returners from the 2011-12 Lumberjacks roster, plus five affiliate list players who saw action last year and one trade acquisition.

The Muskegon veterans in action this week are defensemen Carter Foguth, Zach Yoder and Florida Panthers draft pick Rasmus Bengtsson, forwards Joe Cox (Michigan State, pictured), Max Shuart (Michigan), Tyler Heinonen (Michigan Tech), Mike McNicholas (New Hampshire) and Mason Jobst, plus goaltender Hayden Stewart.

In addition, Battle Creek native Chad McDonald makes his Muskegon debut after arriving in a deal from Des Moines.

Seventeen selections from the twin USHL drafts conducted in May are also in town, led by first-round Entry Draft pick Adam Gilmour. The 6-foot-3 Boston College recruit went second overall to the Lumberjacks and is listed among the top 100 North American prospects for the upcoming NHL Draft, which is next weekend.

Camp activities will be mostly limited to controlled games, which are open to the public. Additional roster information can be found in the L.C. Walker Arena Beer Garden. Concession stands will be serving, Lumberjacks merchandise will be available and the arena box office will be open throughout the week.

The players will be divided into six teams until Thursday night, when the talent pool will be pared down to four squads. After Friday’s action, two teams will remain for a pair of “all-star games” Saturday at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Following camp, the Lumberjacks must submit a 25-man roster to the USHL no later than July 1. That group of 25 players will return to Muskegon in late summer for training camp.

No comments: