Tailing the Komets: More roster moves

Garrett Bartus

The Komets have lost goaltender Michael Houser to a call-up to Tucson of the AHL. An Arizona Coyotes goaltender was involved in a car accident last night, and the effects rippled throughout the chain of affiliates. The goaltender is thought to be fine, and Houser could be back early next week.

That means Garrett Bartus starts the two Komets’ games this weekend, and Indiana Tech goaltending coach Andy DiCristofaro has been signed as an emergency backup goaltender. The Komets are also bringing in another goaltender for Saturday’s game in Wheeling from the Southern Professional Hockey League. That player is on his way, but the Komets cannot announce him yet because he has not signed an ECHL contract, according to General Manager David Franke.

These move help to activate center Justin Hodgman off injured reserve and fit him under the salary cap.

“We’re able to work everything around,” Franke said. “With the whole team, we want to try to keep everything together as much as we can rather than running short and getting guys in and out. If we can keep this group together and add and subtract with guys coming and going or injuries we’d like to do that. Part of that is that a lot of SPHL guys don’t want to leave their team right now, too.”

Franke said he has heard nothing about the potential returns of Dan Maggio or Ryan Culkin who are playing with Tucson. The Roadrunners are on a six-game road trip.

DiCristofaro has experience playing in the SPHL and the Federal Hockey League, playing 23 games last year.

“It’s all we can do right now,” Franke said. “We have a deep team and Garrett Bartus has been a hell of a goalie for us. We’re very comfortable with him playing the games.”

Bartus is 9-2-0 this season with a 2.45 goals against average and .909 save percentage.

The Komets are also using captain Jamie Schaafsma on defense this weekend. He’s been practicing on the blueline most of the week.