Johnstown Tomahawks Opening Weekend and Roster Preview
Written by: David Nicoletti and Jon Kohan
The time has finally come ladies and gentlemen, hockey is back! The Johnstown Tomahawks will kick off their 2020-21 season on the road this weekend with two games against the Maryland Black Bears. Puck drop for both games was schedule for 7:45 PM ET and to take place at Piney Orchard Ice Arena in Odenton, Maryland, however the dates and times have been adjusted for Covid related reasons.
Now, the season opener will take place this Sunday (10-11-20) at 7pm and Monday morning at 11:30am.
These two meetings between the Tomahawks and Black Bears this weekend will be the first of 14 games between the two teams this season. Last season, the Tomahawks and Black Bears met 10 times throughout the year. Johnstown would go 9-0-1 against the Black Bears, while Maryland would go 1-6-3 against the Hawks in 2019-20.
Throughout the Tomahawks and Black Bears history playing one another, both teams have scrapped off against each other 22 times. The Tomahawks lead the all time series between the two teams with a 20-1-1 record while the Black Bears have an all time record of 2-16-3-1.
This will be the Tomahawks ninth season in team history. This is the first time the Tomahawks begin their season vs the Black Bears. The Tomahawks hold an opening night record of 3-4-1. Their last opening night game was a loss to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights 6-4 on September 13th, 2019 at Revolution Ice Centre in Pittston, PA.
The previous season saw the Tomahawks finish 2nd place in the East Division with a 34-13-2-2 record with 72 points, five points behind the 1st place New Jersey Titans. The Hawks would clinch a playoff spot for the 2020 NAHL Robertson Cup Playoffs but due to COVID 19, there would be no playoffs as the rest of the NAHL 2020-21 season was cancelled.
Head coach Mike Letizia will be entering his seventh season as the Tomahawks bench boss. In all of his years of coaching the Hawks, Letizia holds a 200-122-29 record . He’ll be joined on the coaching staff by Nick Mish. (Assistant Coach/Goalie)
For the Maryland Black Bears, this will be their third opening night in team history. So far, they are 0-2 on opening night. Their last opening night game was a loss to the New Jersey Titans, 7-5 on September 13th, 2019 at Piney Orchard Ice Arena.
Last season saw the Maryland Black Bears finishing 4th place in the East Division standings with a 20-25-7 record and 47 points finishing 10 points shy of third ,which would be held by the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights, and 30 points out of 1st place.
Head Coach and General Manager Clint Mylymok will be going into his third season as head coach of the Black Bears. He holds a 36-62-14 record as head coach of the Black Bears. He will be joined on the bench by Black Bear assistant coach, Brandon Gotkin.
You can watch the Johnstown Tomahawks take on the Maryland Black Bears via HockeyTV.
Read each team’s NA Now season preview:
As of the writing of this article, the Johnstown Tomahawks have not released a roster on NAHL.com, but to be fair, no team has their rosters posted yet. That should take place most likely at some point today, or early morning Friday. Through various resources we have a list of names that we beleive will shape this year's Tomahawks roster.
We'd like to share a few of those names:
Ryan Ullan - Goalie
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