Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Metro acquires forward Monfils from Jr. Lumberjacks

WATERFORD, MI – The Metro Jets continue to fine-tune their roster and made a trade Wednesday with the Cleveland Jr. Lumberjacks, acquiring 20-year-old forward Jeff Monfils for a fourth-round pick in the 2013 North American 3 Hockey League draft.

Monfils, a Macomb native, scored 17 goals (two on the power play) and 28 points in 46 games a year ago with Cleveland.

“We are going to have a young team this year and we were looking to add a veteran presence and leadership and think we found that in Jeff,” said Metro GM Butch Wolfe. “We saw him a lot last season and were impressed with what we saw. He plays bigger than he really is (5-foot-9, 180 pounds). We’re excited to see how he will fit in with the younger crop we have coming in.”

During the 2010-11 season, Monfils skated with the Missoula Maulers, Bozeman Icedogs and Billings Bulls of the Northern Pacific Hockey League.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Jets, Toledo complete swap of 19-year-old defensemen

WATERFORD, MI – The Metro Jets have announced that they have acquired defenseman Derek Britton from the Toledo Cherokee in exchange for defenseman Zach Schlacht and a future player tender.

 “This is a trade that we feel will benefit both teams,” said Metro GM Butch Wolfe. “Derek brings some good size (6-foot-4, 195 pounds) to our team and Zach will get a chance to see increased playing time with Toledo.”

Britton (pictured), a 19-year-old from Sterling Heights, tallied six assists and 53 penalty minutes in 27 games in 2011-12 with the Cherokee.

Schlacht, a 19-year-old Allen Park native, played last season with older brother Jake and had two goals and 10 points with 63 penalty minutes for Metro.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Metro defenseman Baker off to Robert Morris

WATERFORD, MI - John Baker came home to Waterford last season to play his final season of junior eligibility and he parlayed a terrific season with the Metro Jets into a college hockey deal with the Robert Morris University ACHA Division I gold team in Chicago.

Baker said he had several other options to play collegiately next season, but the opportunity to play in Chicago and for RMU coach Tom Adrahtas was too much to pass on.

“I was in contact with their coordinator and coach throughout the past three seasons,” said Baker. “I also talked with Davenport, Lindenwood, Kent State and Curry College, but Robert Morris just felt like it was the best place for me.”

Robert Morris was once a private college, but became a university in 2009. The school hosted the ACHA national tournament in 2010 and Adrahtas has coached at the NCAA level and in the United States Hockey League.

On the ice, Baker is hoping to be a top-four defenseman for Robert Morris, while in the classroom, he will be majoring in business.

Reflecting on the 2011-12 season where he led all Jets’ defenders with five goals and 22 points playing alongside Adam Reid much of the year, Baker said he’s not sure he’d be in the position he is right now if he hadn’t decided to play in Waterford.

“I feel like the division we were in really helped my compete level every night,” said Baker. “In our division, we had to come to play every night and it was anybody’s game. I think playing for coach (Jason) Cirone was the best choice I made during my junior hockey career. He is a great coach and gave me a chance to put up a lot of minutes every game and really develop even more even though it was my last year of junior. Even though I wish I could have played at a higher level, I had fun and loved competing every night as a Jet and for coach Cirone.”

On a team scale, Baker saw the Jets take the proverbial step up into a legitimate contender in the North American 3 Hockey League.

“I feel like we definitely turned some heads last season as an organization because of the team we had and the coaching,” Baker said. “Nobody could really look down on our team last season. We were a tough top team in the league and definitely took a big stride in the right direction, much thanks to Jason. We had a lot of talent and we were tough. I feel like you could call us a hard-nosed, blue-collar team, finished our hits and really just wore teams down by the third period in many of our games.”

Now off to the Windy City this week to get settled, Baker is focused on the future.

”I am set on taking my collegiate hockey to the next level,” said Baker. “I would really enjoy playing professional over in Europe after a few years of school. I love hockey and really want to make something out of the past 18 years of playing.

“I believe if I want it bad enough, it might be the road less traveled, but I think I have the heart to take my game to the next level.”

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Jets' alum Moroso to skate at Adrian College for '12-13 season

WATERFORD, MI - Count Mike Moroso as the latest Metro Jets’ alum to advance to college hockey.

Moroso, who played for the Jets during the 2010-11 season, will play ACHA Division I hockey this coming season at Adrian College, a team that boasts several former North American 3 Hockey League players.

“I really just weighed my options and decided that Adrian was a good fit for me and not too far from home,” said Moroso, a 20-year-old forward from Macomb. “I contacted (Adrian coach Dan) Phelps and he pursued me from there. I know that Adrian is a school with high standards in academics and sports.”

Moroso said he will major in physical science at Adrian and that he’s “expecting to have to work for what I get hockey- and academics-wise.”

During the 2011-12 season, Moroso finished second in scoring for the North American Hockey League’s Port Huron Fighting Falcons and also represented Port Huron at the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament in February.

“Last season with Port Huron was very successful, but also slightly disappointing,” explained Moroso. “We made it to the Robertson Cup, but didn't achieve our goal of winning it all.”

Moroso recorded 14 goals and 38 points last season coming off a 20-goal season with Metro two years back. He wound up third in team scoring with 36 points in 43 games for the Jets and also led the team and was second in the NA3HL with four shorthanded goals.

”The thing that stands out from the season I had with the Jets was what I learned from coach (Jason) Cirone and just the experience of junior hockey,” Moroso said.

Other former NA3HL/CSHL players who played for Adrian last year include Ryan Bachman (Dubuque), Matt Zaremba (Cleveland), Shamus Finnerty (Quad City/Pittsburgh), Jeffrey Blackwell (Queen City), Jack Goodell (Toledo), Tristan Musser (Dubuque), Alex Dobrzeniecki (Queen City), Justen Mitchell (Michigan), Spencer Jordan (Toledo), Louie Ronayne (Chicago), Kevin Sunde (Dubuque) and Brandon Boelter (Toledo).

Photo by Andy Grossman/Detailed Images

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Reid hangs up skates, but staying involved with WMU gig

WATERFORD, MI – Just when Adam Reid thought he couldn’t catch a break, he did.

After the steady defenseman played last season for the Metro Jets of the North American 3 Hockey League, he had planned on moving up to the North American Hockey League with the New Mexico Mustangs, the team that signed him to a tender contract midway through last season.

Then this offseason, the Mustangs folded.

No worries. Reid attended a handful of other NAHL camps and was weighing several offers.

Then his doctor wouldn’t clear him to play hockey after a series of concussions in a short window of time left him as a player who was one hit away from not living a pain-free life.

With his skates hung up, Reid decided to enroll at Western Michigan University on a full-time basis and on a whim, landed himself a job working with the Broncos’ Division I hockey team.

“You can’t beat working with (WMU coach and longtime NHL coach) Andy Murray,” said Reid, who recorded two goals and nine points in 45 games last season with the Jets. “It’s hard to be done playing competitive hockey, but at least I’m staying involved. I’m looking forward to it.”

Reid will also stay on with the Jets in a special projects capacity.

Reid, originally from Kalamazoo, lived in Texas the better part of the last 14 years after his father’s job uprooted the family. He sat out all but four games of the 2010-11 season with concussion issues, but came to the Jets last year and was one of the team’s more consistent stay-at-home defenders.

“Last season was probably the most fun I’ve had playing hockey,” said the 20-year-old Reid. “The guys on the team were close, almost like brothers. I learned so much from (Jets head coach) Jason (Cirone) and I wouldn’t trade last year for anything. Things happen for a reason and even if I can’t keep playing hockey, I’m glad the opportunity came up at Western where I can still be around the game and get a great education.

“Above all, thank you to my wonderful parents, who ensured I had every opportunity to try and succeed. I am reminded of how special this game is, the colossal impact it has had on me in my life and how fortunate I was to step onto that ice for the last 16 years.”