Fort Wayne, IN -- The Komets held their annual training camp press luncheon Monday to kick off the 61st anniversary season of Komet hockey in Fort Wayne and launch the premier season of play in the ECHL.
The Komet camp officially opened Saturday on Coliseum ice. Head coach Al Sims has divided the camp roster into two groups, groups A and B, and will continue to have two morning practices each day, at 10am and 11:15am, through Thursday. Camp scrimmages are also being held through Thursday at 3pm each day. The complete training camp schedule is posted at the end of this release.
Komets embark on premier ECHL campaign-- Fort Wayne's 61st anniversary season will be the first season of play in the ECHL for the Komets and the ECHL's 25th anniversary season. The Komets skated the past two seasons in the Central Hockey League after three years of play in the renewed International Hockey League. Fort Wayne was a member of the United Hockey League for eight seasons from 1999-2007 after a 47-year stint in the old IHL.
The Komets will be a member of the North Division in the ECHL's Eastern Conference with rivals Evansville, Cincinnati, Kalamazoo and Toledo. The ECHL Eastern Conference also is made up of the Atlantic Division and South Division. The Western Conference is divided by two divisions including the Mountain Division and the Pacific Division.
Home opener Friday, Oct. 12 vs the Wings-- The Komets will rekindle their old rivalry against the Kalamazoo Wings when the season opens on Coliseum Ice Friday, Oct. 12 at 8pm. Many events, including the parading of the Presidents' Championship Cup one final time around the ice, are planned for opening night. Fans are encouraged to arrive early for the festivities.
Camp roster-- The Komets’ training camp roster includes 30 players in attendance:
Forwards Eric Giosa, Stephon Thorne, Brett Smith, J.P. Chabot, Kaleigh Schrock, Colin Chaulk, Matt Firman, Brayden Metz, Mike Hoban, Cory Park, John Dunbar, Matt Atsoff, Seth Ronsberg, Linus Werneman, Patrick Knowlton, Robbie Smith, Cory Schneider and Chris Auger.
Defensemen Tyler Butler, Scott Kishel, Kyle Atkins, Tim Buttery, Daniel Nycholat, Nicolas Thommen and Ricky Helmbrecht.
Goaltenders Gerry Festa, Francois Lacerte and Larking Sallfrank.
Players currently at AHL training camps include:
Forwards Brandon Marino, J.M. Rizk.
Defensemen Daniel Maggio and Brent Henley.
Goaltender Charlie Effinger.
Sims marks 10th anniversary season—Head coach Al Sims is returning for his 10th season as Komet head coach. Sims has collected five championships during his reign as Fort Wayne's head coach, including last year's CHL Presidents' Cup Trophy and owns the Komet record for most wins by a head coach at 404 in 689 regular season games plus 72 playoff wins in 105 post-season games.
Media press luncheon Monday-- The Komets will host their annual Training Camp Kickoff Press Luncheon Monday, Oct. 1, in the Red Room at the Memorial Coliseum at 12:15pm. All area media are invited. Komet players, coaching staff and management will be in attendance for interviews and photo ops.
IceMen to visit for preseason tune-ups-- The Komets have scheduled a pair of exhibition home games against the Evansville IceMen at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. The Komets will face the IceMen Saturday, Oct. 6 at 7:30pm and again Sunday, Oct. 7 at 5pm. Exhibition games will not be broadcast on WOWO radio.
Tickets on sale-- Single game tickets (including Komet home exhibition games) and season tickets are now on sale. Single game tickets can be purchased at the Coliseum Ticket Office and online at TicketMaster. Season tickets are on sale at the Komet office, 1010 Memorial Way, Fort Wayne. For information visit www.komets.com, or call 260-483-0011.
Game times-- The Komets continue with game times of 7:30pm for all home games Monday thru Thursdays and Saturdays. Friday home games faceoff at 8pm and Sunday home games will get underway at 5pm.
Komets.com-- Fans are enjoying the new official team website for the Komets at www.komets.com featuring an interactive calendar of the Komets' schedule, information about all Komet events as well as home and road games. In addition to news and information, the new site features an on-line team store and navigation of the ticketing process. Fans are able to download and access photo galleries, player information , video, audio and other multi-media features as well as follow Komet gamecasts live and much more.
Friday night Marathon nights return-- Continuing this year, Friday nights will be Marathon Nights at Komet home games. Fans can take advantage of buy-one-get-one-free ticket offers for any of the nine Friday night home games beginning with the home opener Oct. 12. Fill-Up Cards are available at all participating Marathon stations.
Komet Hockey on WOWO AM & FM and at Xfinity KometCast-- The Komets and WOWO Radio AM 1190 and FM 92.3 will partner once again for 2012-13. Fort Wayne legendary broadcaster Bob Chase will call the action radio-rinkside for his 60th anniversary season behind the Komet microphone. All broadcasts, home and away, will also be heard worldwide at www.komets.com at Xfinity KometCast.
INC Soundoff with the Komets returns to Monday nights -- The Komets, Indiana's News Center and title sponsor PHP present a live weekly televised sports program on Monday nights at 7:30 on WPTA TV 21 Alive. The half-hour show will be televised from the WPTA TV studios each week with INC's Tommy Schoegler as host and will feature highlights, interviews and call-ins as Komet players and personnel serve as co-hosts beginning Monday, Oct. 1 and continuing throughout the season.