(Amherst, NY) – While most everyone else is taking in their final month of summer fun and festivities, it’s already hockey season for members of the Buffalo Junior Sabres.
The team opened its 2012 Training Camp on Monday, August 13 with two practice sessions and will continue with two-a-days for the first week of camp.
Prior to the first practice, General Manager & Head Coach Michael Peca met with some members of the Western New York media and shared an all-around feeling of excitement within the organization.
“It’s an important time for these kids,” opened Peca. “I think as a coach you get excited about training camp. As players, they get excited because now they’re coming together. The season’s less than a month away. I know the coaching staff has been eager to get these kids together and get them going in practice a little bit, get some familiarity built up… yeah, we’re excited to go.” .
Last season, the Jr. Sabres showed considerable improvement from the year prior. In the 2011-12 season, the Jr. Sabres qualified for the postseason for the first time in three seasons and advanced to the second round.
Last year’s squad also produced no less than five future college hockey players. This fall, Chris Luker and Dennis Playfair will enroll at SUNY Brockport and SUNY Geneseo, respectively. David Seward and Josh Kielich are returning for their final year of junior hockey before enrolling at Princeton and Canisius, respectively, beginning with academic year 2013-14. Andrew Poturalski will also enroll in college and play hockey at New Hampshire in 2013, but will first recover from a leg injury suffered during a pickup skate this summer.
Peca and his coaching staff believe there are more serious college prospects in this year’s lineup.
“The thing we like about our group this year is that we’ve got a lot of returning players,” said Peca. “And some of the new players that we’ve added bring a tremendous amount of experience, so we’re excited about that. I think our team’s well-positioned to get out of the gates with some confidence and have a pretty good season.”