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WRITER: Blake Sebring

Blake Siebenaler rallying after season-ending injury in Cleveland

Last season was supposed to be Blake Siebenaler's big year. The Fort Wayne product entered the second year of his three-year contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets excited about his chances to improve and showcase what he had learned as a rookie with the American Hockey League's Cleveland Monsters. This was his chance to prove he was a real NHL prospect. But as prepared as Siebenaler was, the season never had ...

David Franke: Komets waiting for August to heat up for key signings

The more patient Fort Wayne Komets fans are in July, the better things could be in August and September, General Manager David Franke said Wednesday. The Komets have signed nine players for the 2018-19 season which is as many as any other ECHL team. The problem is, the Komets lost so much with their top four scorers and one of their top three defensemen signing earlier this summer to play in Europe. They also ...

Bishop Dwenger's Maggie Peters might dominate Junior Nationals at Turnstone

Maggie Peters is a completely normal, typical, ordinary 14-year-old girl. Except... The Bishop Dwenger freshman-to-be loves to laugh, read, wants to write and excels at trying out every sport and then exceeding. She attacks athletics with passion to spend the necessary time getting the correct footwork, pacing and fundamentals memorized, and then she quickly improves. So far, she's narrowed her activities ...

Harding graduate, former Northrop coach John Reid dominating Georgia high school football

Whenever he starts an extensive rebuilding job at a new school, coach John Reid will tell his players, "I've been you, but you haven't been me." During his three years playing on the varsity at Harding High School, the Hawks were a combined 1-26. After graduating from Ball State, his first coaching job was at New Haven Middle School where he was the only coach for 56 players. When he took over the Rome, Ga., ...

Former Komet Kyle Thomas signs AHL contract

From a Utica Comets press release: Utica Comets General Manager Ryan Johnson announced today that the team has signed forward Kyle Thomas and goaltender Ivan Kulbakov to one-year AHL contracts. Kulbakov, 21, played in 22 games with the ECHL’s Quad City Mallards, finishing with an 11-11-0 record, a 3.63 goals-against average, and a .902 save percentage. The Gomel, Belarus native also appeared in eight games ...

Surprise winner named Fort Wayne's Favorite local pro hockey player

In a shocking upset, Fort Wayne's Favorite locally produced pro hockey player isn't Komets greats Colin Chin or Kaleigh Schrock or even former NHL players Dale Purinton and Fred Knipscheer. It's Ryan Potts who participated in a couple of training camps and played five games with the Komets during the middle of the 2008-09 season. A versatile forward, Potts played five games, scoring two assists. He played ...

Who is Fort Wayne's Favorite... female basketball player

Jody Beerman, G After helping lead Heritage to the 1982 state title, Beerman was named Miss Basketball after her senior season in 1983. At the time, she was the state's all-time leading scorer with 1,616 points and was the recipient of the Mental Attitude Award after helping the Patriots reach the final four for the second year in a row and stretch their winning streak to 35 games. She went on to set several ...

Kalamazoo's Joel Martin has announced his retirement

Wings goaltending ace Joel Martin will become an assistant coach for Nick Bootland. Martin has always been a class act and it seemed he always played his best against the Komets. I always enjoyed talking to him, and I'm glad those opportunities will continue. Plus, the Wings will always have a handy emergency back-up goalie available. Here's a story I wrote about him in 2015. Wings goalie keeps improving with ...

Fort Wayne Komets sign former Kelly Cup-winning goaltender

The Fort Wayne Komets decided some of their goaltending situation with the signing of Kelly Cup champion Lukas Hafner on Monday. He was part of the last two Colorado Eagles championship teams and was in net for the 2017 title. "He's played in some big games," Komets General Manager David Franke said. "He only got 20 games this year but he's a good goalie who really competes hard. He's a good goalie we feel is ...

New Komets goaltender Lukas Hafner anxious to get started in Fort Wayne

Lukas Hafner has had a remarkable first two years in professional hockey, and now he'd like something a little more normal which is one reason why the goaltender signed Monday with the Fort Wayne Komets. "Fort Wayne was at the top of my list as soon as the season ended," Hafner said. "When I got the call a couple of weeks ago from coach (Gary) Graham, I was just so excited. To have a chance to get a call from a ...

Cody Sol hoping to leave Fort Wayne Komets' playoff loss behind

After the Fort Wayne Komets lost Game 7 of the ECHL's Western Conference Finals in Colorado, it took Cody Sol a bit to wind down. "That whole ride home, 22 hours on the bus was kind of stodgy," the veteran defenseman said. "You hang out with friends and talk about the season and stuff, all the fun times you had and you enjoy each other's company, but when you are laying on the bunk for a couple of hours or ...

Time to submit Ask the Beat Writer questions for Fort Wayne Komets

There's currently are about six questions that have been submitted, but we'd like some more. Please reply to this post or send them to bsebring@news-sentinel.com, on Twitter @bsebring or through Messenger on Facebook to make sure I see them. What would you like to learn about your favorite hockey team? We'll plan on running the next segment late next week just before I go on vacation. Don't ask how I schedule ...

National Guard member Brandon Brown is ready for Baer Field Motorsports Park racing return

It's been quite a while since Brandon Brown has been able to take a victory lap. Brown won fast qualifier, the heat race and then the feature in the stock front-wheel drive class at Baer Field Motorsports Park on June 9. It was his first career victory at the start of his third season. Two days later, he was on his way to Australia with his Indiana Army National Guard unit for 26 days of specialized ...

A few Fort Wayne Komets notes

As they always do, the Fort Wayne Komets will march in the Three Rivers Festival Parade on Saturday morning. There will be some Legends and Jamie Schaafsma will walk along with Icy. Shawn Szydlowski told me he was going to come down to walk as well. There might be a few surprise players. Komets General Manager David Franke said today the team is continuing to talk with Dennis Kravchenko and Marc-Olivier Roy ...

Fort Wayne Komets' Daniel Maggio signs with Tuscon Roadrunners

After he played 13 games for them last year this probably shouldn't be a surprise, but the Komets have lost defenseman/forward Daniel Maggio has signed a contract with the American Hockey League's Tucson Roadrunners. Maggio, 27, played 13 games with the Roadrunners last season with one assist. For the Komets, he was an invaluable presence in the locker room and also had eight goals and 24 points in 46 games ...

To Super Shot nurse, immunizations are personal crusade

Seconds after delivering the second injection and trying to preempt the toddler's cry of rage, Michelle Heck reaches over and rubs the baby's leg and says, "We're all done. I know it hurts, but it's all over." The toddler still screams and stares daggers at her, squirming on his mother's lap, but Heck still feels some accomplishment at what she's done. "I never lie to them," Heck said. "The mom will say, ...

Talks going on between Memorial Coliseum and another indoor football league

Upon further review, there might be another down for indoor football in Fort Wayne. Memorial Coliseum General Manager Randy Brown said this week he's having discussions with representatives of the National Gridiron League which hopes to start play in March with 12 teams. The league will be owned by a single person with potential local investors, whom Brown said it was premature to identify. "The structure ...

Memorial Coliseum getting upgrade with new scoreboard

The Memorial Coliseum arena is about to go high-definition. Work is ongoing this summer on replacing the arena's scoreboard with a $1.6 million project. The new scoreboard is big enough that the old one could fit inside, and the screen sharpness will be three times better. "This will be the same pixel size that is in Assembly Hall (IU) and Mackey Arena (Purdue) and that you see in most NHL and NBA arenas," ...

Former Komet Zac Larraza announces retirement

Though he struggled with injuries for parts of the season, Zac Larraza turned out to be a pretty valuable player for the Fort Wayne Komets this season. He finished with seven goals and 25 points in 34 games before he was recalled to Tucson of the AHL. He never got the chance to return in time for the playoffs. On Tuesday, Larraza, 25, announced his retirement from professional hockey on Instagram. "I got to ...

Kevin Kiermaier snares Fort Wayne's Favorite Baseball Player honor

As he's done many times to home run hitters by making great catches at the wall, Kevin Kiermaier crushed the hopes of everyone else in the field. The Bishop Luers graduate received 50 percent of the votes cast to win News-Sentinel.com's poll of Fort Wayne's Favorite Baseball Players. The Tampa Bay Rays center fielder easily out-distanced former New Haven High School star Dave Doster who played in the majors ...