WATERFORD, MI – Kyle Shreve has played for three different teams this season at three different levels, but somewhere along the way, he made an impact and earned an opportunity to move up (again) to the North American Hockey League next year.
Shreve, an 18-year-old forward from Wixom, signed a tender agreement on Wednesday with the Springfield (Ill.) Jr. Blues of the NAHL.
A tender is a contract of sorts that a player signs announcing his intentions to play for that particular NAHL team and that NAHL team only. Once a player signs a tender with an NAHL team, his playing rights belong to that team within the NAHL and he may not be recruited by any other NAHL team.
Starting the 2012-13 season with the NAHL’s Michigan Warriors, Shreve then came to the Metro Jets of the North American 3 Hockey League before playing for the Belle Tire Midget Major AAA team and eventually finding his way back to the Jets.
“From what I hear, the Springfield organization is a great organization that runs things the right way and is loyal to its players,” Shreve said. “This is a great opportunity and I hope I fit in well and can contribute immediately.”
This year with the Jets, Shreve has posted five goals and eight points in 11 games. He said three of his coaches this year have contributed immensely to his development.
“(Belle Tire coach) Chris Coury, (Jets’ head coach) Jason Cirone and (Jets’ assistant coach) Randy Wilson have all been very important in giving me this opportunity, especially Randy,” said Shreve. “It’s always great as a player when you have three coaches that have a lot of connections in the hockey world pulling for you and I’m very thankful for that.
“I think that there is a lot to work on before next season. I think the biggest part is adjusting to the size of the players and the speed of the game so I think that working on my speed and strength are key.”
Cirone feels Shreve will have no problem making an impact with the Jr. Blues.
“Kyle is a power forward who works extremely hard,” said Cirone. “He loves to hit and doesn’t mind getting hit. I think he’s a perfect fit for what Springfield is trying to build.”
With about five weeks left in the NA3HL season, the Jets are aiming to make a run and qualify for the league playoffs. Shreve knows what needs to be done to extend the Jets’ season.
“I think we know what we need to do,” said Shreve. “We’re working hard every day at practice and Coach Cirone makes sure we are prepared every day for our next game. “I don’t think anybody is happy with our record, but at the same time, I think this is a great group of guys and we come to work hard every practice and game.
"The easy part is talking about it – now we need to put it together and show why we belong in the playoffs.”
LOOKING BACK, LOOKING AHEAD
The Jets and Michigan Mountain Cats split their two-game series last weekend at the Great Lakes Sports City in Fraser.
Metro used four different goal-scorers to defeat the Mountain Cats 4-2 Friday night.
Jets' captain Matt Stirling and Brad Hepler each tallied a goal and two assists to back Riley Corbin's 29 saves in goal. Andrew Palushaj added a goal and a helper to go along with an insurance goal from Doug Andrews.
Saturday night, Spencer Craig stopped all 36 shots he faced as the Mountain Cats earned a split with a 4-0 win.
Guy Soulliere scored twice for the Mountain Cats.
Trevor Kalinowski made 29 saves in the Metro net.
The Jets (13-20-2-0) next travel to Flint to play the Jr. Generals tonight at Iceland Arena. Game time is set for 7:30 p.m.
Josh Cliff, a 19-year-old goalie from Northville, was added to the roster this week.
The Jets also dealt 19-year-old defenseman Josh Hosking to the Three Rivers Vengeance for a first-round pick in the 2013 NA3HL draft and future considerations. The Oxford native recorded 11 points in 23 games with the Jets.
The Jets-Jr. Generals game that was postponed back on Jan. 31 has been rescheduled for Tuesday, March 5 at 9 p.m. at Iceland Arena in Flint.
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
Forward Mike Moroso, who finished third in team scoring in 2010-11 with 20 goals and 36 points, is wrapping up his freshman season with the Adrian College ACHA Division I team this year.
A 21-year-old Macomb native, Moroso skated last season with the NAHL’s Port Huron Fighting Falcons, tallying 14 goals and 38 points in 56 games and also playing in the league’s Top Prospects Tournament.
This year with the Bulldogs, Moroso is averaging close to a point per game with 10 goals and 22 points in 23 games.