GENEVA, ILLINOIS – The Chicago Steel announced Wednesday the team’s roster for the 2016-2017 USHL regular season. Following a 4-1-1-0 record in the preseason, the roster has been trimmed down and now includes 15 forwards, eight defensemen and two goaltenders. The team is preparing for Opening Night this Saturday, Sept. 24 at Fox Valley Ice Arena against the Green Bay Gamblers.
12 players on the Opening Night roster played in at least one game for Chicago last season. 2015-2016 leading scorer Jake Jaremko (60 GP: 20G + 28A) is one of three 20-year-olds on this season’s team, along with Johnny Walker and Marc Johnstone. Jaremko and defenseman Matt Kiersted each also skated for part of the 2014-2015 season with Chicago.
Headlining the list of newcomers to the roster is Finnish forward Mikael Hakkarainen, the Steel’s 1st Round (6th overall) pick in the 2016 USHL Phase II Draft, as well as defenseman and Geneva native Graham Lillibridge. Additionally, the Steel welcome forward Walker Duehr to the roster after winning a USHL Clark Cup Championship in May with the Tri-City Storm.
The Steel will be backstopped this season by Tommy Nappier, an Ohio State University commit from St. Louis, and Czech netminder Ales Stezka, a fourth-round pick of the Minnesota Wild in the 2015 NHL Draft.
In total, the roster consists of 21 players already committed to NCAA Division I schools. Jack Badini, Reilly Walsh and Baker Shore are all committed to Harvard University, while Reggie Lutz, Duehr and Jaremko have committed to Minnesota State University.
20 players are from the United States, including five from Minnesota. Four additional countries are represented: Czech Republic, Finland (2), Latvia and Sweden.
Defenseman Alec Regula, a 16-year-old University of Michigan commit, is the only 2000 birth year player on the roster.
Left wing Tyler Gratton is currently injured, as is forward Eduards Tralmaks, who was placed on Injured Reserve.
To reach its current roster size, Chicago placed forward Zach Risteau on the team’s affiliate list. Defenseman Adam Parsells was traded to the Des Moines Buccaneers, while defenseman Colin Swoyer and affiliate list forward Steven Agriogianis have been dealt to the Sioux Falls Stampede.
Forwards: Jack Badini, Walker Duehr, Tyler Gratton, Mikael Hakkarainen, Bobby Hampton, Jake Jaremko, Marc Johnstone, Mitch Lewandowski, Austen Long, Reggie Lutz, Tony Pappila, Greg Printz, Baker Shore, Eduards Tralmaks, Johnny Walker
Defensemen: Wyatt Aamodt, Corson Green, Adam Karashik, Matt Kiersted, Jesper Kokkila, Graham Lillibridge, Alec Regula, Reilly Walsh
Goaltenders: Tommy Nappier, Ales Stezka
Chicago finished the preseason 4-1-1-0, including at least one point (2-0-1-0) in each game at the Fall Classic. The Steel now return home to open the regular season on Saturday against the Green Bay Gamblers. The first 500 kids (14 and under) in attendance will receive a complimentary Steel replica youth jersey. For more information or to purchase tickets visit the Steel box office inside Fox Valley Ice Arena, call 855-51-STEEL or visit ChicagoSteelHockeyTeam.com.