Muskegon Lumberjacks bring down curtain on training camp; coaching staff huddles to make final decisions

By Ron Rop
LocalSportsJournal.com

The Muskegon Lumberjacks completed their six days of training camp Saturday night with an all-star game at L.C. Walker Arena.

Muskegon Lumberjacks' Tyler Heinonen scores the first of his two goals of the night. - Photo / Keith Sipe

The final score – 4-2 in favor of the Gold team – wasn’t the big issue as the team’s Main Camp came to an end. It was the coaching staff making some difficult decisions on which players will make up the USHL’s roster for the 2012-13 season.

“We’ve got some stuff to finish off yet (Saturday) night so we can post the list in the morning,” Lumberjacks’ coach Jim McKenzie said. “We’re getting down to the nitty gritty.”

A total of 40 players – a mixture of returning players, free agents and affiliate players – went through the grind of a regulation 60-minute game in front of several hundred spectators at L.C. Walker Arena.

Tyler Heinonen, a returning Lumberjack, led the Gold team with two goals, both in the third period, and one assist. Mason Jobst and Chad McDonald also scored for the winning team.

Brett D’Andrea and Joe Cox scored for the Black team.

The week began with the team’s two-day Invite Camp. On Wednesday, it was the four-day Main Camp.

Lumberjack coaches and scouts got an eyeful all week.

“I think it’s been good,” said McKenzie, lauding the efforts of his assistant coaches and scouts for this hard work in scouring the country for talented players. “I was impressed with the talent and the quality of the kids.”

Following Sunday morning’s announcement on which players made the Jacks’ roster, the players were fitted for equipment for heading home for the remainder of the summer.

The coaching staff will be in constant contact with the players regarding their summer workout programs.
The team will then gather in late August to begin preparations for the USHL regular season, which begins the final week of September.

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