Loaded for Bear

Aug 8, 2011

BISMARCK, ND – The Bismarck Bobcats have wrapped up their 2011 Main Camp, trimming a list of 80 hopefuls from around the world down to a small list of preseason invitees that include 15 returning players from their 2010-11 campaign that featured the franchise’s third consecutive Central Division title.

“There was quite a bit of talent and toughness on display at the [VFW Sports Center] this weekend from the players who came to town trying to become a part of our winning tradition,” said Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie. “It made for some tough decisions to make as a coaching staff, but as a coach you can’t really call having too many talented players to choose from ‘a problem’.”

Every member of last season’s Central Cup-winning squad at Main Camp made the final list: goalie Tommy Burke; forwards Bryce Schmitt, Tyler Richter, Frank DeAugustine, Dan Zawacki, Castan Sommer, Nick Miglio, Nikolaj Rosenthal and Grant Mindt; and defensemen Danny Ray, Charlie Aus, Dan Kovar, John Furgele, Rodney LaLonde and Donald Olivieri.

Roster spots weren’t just handed to returners, however. Every returning veteran had a strong showing at Main Camp, thanks in large part to having a good mindset and work ethic entering the weekend.

“As vets, we knew that not only did we have to put ourselves in a spot to be a good example for all the new guys,” noted Burke, whose 2-1 playoff record was a huge part of the Cats’ postseason success in 2011, “but we also were well aware that with so many good players out there that nobody was guaranteed to be on this team.

“We had to work just as hard as everyone else out there and that’s why so many vets had a good camp.”

Highlight performances came from Burke—allowing just one goal in 30 minutes in Sunday’s All-Star Game—Mindt—scoring one of the real head-turning goals of the weekend with a 40-foot, top-shelf blast on Friday—and LaLonde—thrilling the crowd with a pair of fights and a no-look assist on Saturday.

“I probably say this every year,” added Bobcats team owner Thom Brigl, who has been watching Main Camps since 2001, “but this is definitely the best team we’ve ever had coming out of Main Camp. We know that the returners are already big-time contributors but some of these young guys are just electric. Organizationally, we are extremely excited for 2011-12.”

The Bobcats will release the full 2011-12 roster in conjunction with this year’s preseason games against the expansion Minotauros September 9 and 10 at the VFW Sports Center.

Season tickets are now on sale for the 2011-12 season—and going fast! Call the Bobcat Hockey office at (701) 222-3300 or email gobobcathockey@aol.com for more information on reserving your seats for the upcoming season!