After a record-breaking 2015-16 season, the Johnstown Tomahawks find themselves with roster spots to fill. Seventeen players from last season's squad advanced to collegiate hockey, a team milestone.
However, the Tomahawks have a solid group of returning veterans that will help transition the team to new heights in the 2016-17 NAHL season.
Returning forward Tommy Horn has trained hard during the off-season to be prepared for an intense Main Camp at Planet Ice.
“I've made sure to work hard during the summer to prepare my body for camp,” Horn said. “Nothing is guaranteed so I have to make sure I am performing at my very best every shift. Main Camp is looking great so far and there are a lot of guys competing hard out there.”
Horn, a Pittsburgh native, enjoyed a career season in the NAHL netting 27 points (11 goals, 16 assists) in 48 game splayed during his first campaign with the Tomahawks. He was a veteran presence on a veteran-laden Hawks team during 2015-16.
The competition is fierce as there are spots to fill and Horn commented that he is getting into his groove.
“I'm getting back into it,” Horn said. “I've kept my feet moving and I take it one shift at a time.”
Another returning veteran is defenseman Adam Pilewicz, who earned a solid rookie season with Johnstown.
Another Pittsburgh native, Pilewicz stabilized the Tomahawks blue line and chipped in five goals and 11 assists. The defender said that he was glad to be back in Johnstown.
“It's great to be back in town and see all of the fans and my teammates,” Pilewicz said. “It's a different feel this year being a returner on the team. I want to help lead the rest of the guys through camp because for some this is their first camp.”
Additionally, Pilewicz hopes to pick up where he left off last season.
“I feel very comfortable out there, especially after a hard practice on Thursday,” Pilewicz said. “I've been working out a ton during the summer and training hard to get ready for the season.”
Tomahawks veterans have had a noticeable affect during camp so far. Their vocal and on-ice leadership have made Main Camp a fun and exciting one so far.
Stay tuned for more coverage of day two of camp later this evening.