Thursday, November 4, 2010

Moroso loving his offensive role with Jets

WATERFORD, MI – Mike Moroso wants to be a difference-maker on the ice and so far this season, he’s been just that for the Metro Jets.

His 11 goals lead the team and of those 11, four have been scored shorthanded – good for tops in the Central States Hockey League.

Needless to say, Moroso is a scoring threat in any situation.

“I've generally always been able to put up points,” said Moroso, a 19-year-old from Macomb, Mich. “Sometimes I have slumps, but I feel it happens to the best of players. It feels great to be a go-to guy for the team. There isn't anything much better than having teammates rely on you in certain situations.

“Before coming to the Jets, I didn't know much about the league, but I knew the team hadn't had a lot of success the past few years and I wanted to come in and try and change that.”

Playing on a line mostly with Tommy Kilgore (Pinckney, Mich.) and Matt Stirling (Dexter, Mich.) and sometimes Joe Matyaszek (Taylor, Mich.), Moroso gave credit to his linemates for his burst of offensive output.

”There was instant chemistry with our line,” explained Moroso. “Me and Stirling always seem to find each other on the ice and having Kilgore or Joe on our line adds some firepower.”

Moroso’s 18 points (11 goals, seven assists) are second on Metro only to Brett Grech’s (Hartland, Mich.) nine goals and 20 points.

Jets’ assistant coach Pete Flynn coached Moroso a few years ago at the bantam level and knew then that Moroso would be a solid junior-level player.

“I coached Mike with the Michigan Jaguars and he was a good offensive player even back then 3-4 years ago,” said Flynn. “He had a lot of speed and good hands and one of those guys that tend to find the back of the net and put the points away. You can see by his stats this year that he has an eye for those types of opportunities.”

After this season, Moroso will have one more year of junior eligibility. Looking towards the future never escapes the back of his mind as Moroso wants to keep playing hockey as long as possible.

”I really want to try to make it to the pro level or at least play at a high college level,” Moroso said. “Playing pro hockey has been a dream for me since I first laced up the skates.”

As long as Moroso keeps the momentum going with the Jets, it’s hard to imagine a future opportunity not presenting itself for the goal-scoring forward.


The Jets, after winning five straight games, have now lost five in a row after getting swept in a two-game series by the Chicago Hitmen over the weekend at Lakeland Arena.

However, the first game of the series wound up being forfeited by the Hitmen when it was ruled they played the game with an ineligible player.

Saturday night, Cameron Bazin (Troy, Mich.) scored the Jets' lone goal in a 7-1 loss.

Eric Trunick (Commerce Township, Mich.) made 26 saves in goal.

Then Sunday afternoon, the Jets came from behind to tie the game twice, but gave up two late goals in the third period to suffer a 6-4 defeat.

Moroso, Stirling, Tommy Burns (Pinckney, Mich.) and Grech scored Metro's goals, while Mike Denston (White Lake, Mich.) tacked on a pair of assists.

In net, Matt Braun (Ramsey, N.J.) finished with 36 saves.

"We started out slow, got it going in the second, and then both teams got into some penalty trouble in the third period," Flynn said. "(Chicago's) special teams proved to be the difference (Sunday)."

This weekend, the Jets (7-9-0-0) play just one game, Sunday afternoon at home against the defending Tier III Junior A national champion St. Louis Jr. Blues. Game time is set for 1:20 p.m.

St. Louis, 9-4-0-0 on the season, is led by forwards Ryan Hogland (six goals, 15 points), Jamie Demarco (four goals, 12 points) and Bo Eastman (seven goals) and defenseman Joe Bowler (goal, six points). Mitch Fernsler and Justin Davis have shared time in goal with Fernsler earning five wins and Davis the other four.

Every St. Louis player has at least one point this season, save for the two goalies.

After last season, longtime head coach Jack Behan stepped down and handed the reins to former Jr. Blues player J.P. Beilsten.


Goaltender Alfonse Kolis (Howell, Mich.) was released late last week. He had not seen any game action this season … Forward Ryan Kelly (Wilton Manor, Fla.) signed with the Jets on Monday. The 19-year-old had played three games in the NAHL this season – two to start the season with Wichita Falls and then one with Port Huron before being released on Oct. 18. Last season, Kelly played for the Victory Honda midget major team … Defenseman Jordan Reames (Essexville, Mich.) is day-to-day with a separated shoulder suffered last Sunday … Braun is the first New Jersey native to play for the Jets since defenseman Lou Licari (Red Bank) and forward Mick Kolbasowski (Manalapan) played at the beginning of the 2008-2009 season.


Former Jets’ defenseman Steve Oleksy (2004-2005) is now in his second full pro season and has one assist in seven games thus far with the ECHL’s Idaho Steelheads.

After playing for the Jets, Oleksy, a 24-year-old from Chesterfield, Mich., played for the NAHL’s Traverse City North Stars and then three years at Lake Superior State University. He split last season between the IHL’s Port Huron Icehawks and the Steelheads.

Photo by Andy Grossman/Detailed Images

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