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The Journal Gazette

September 20, 2016 2:25 PM

Schaafsma named K's player/assistant coach

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

Jamie Schaafsma, who was the Komets’ captain last season, is now the team’s player/assistant coach.

Schaafsma, who has 25 goals and 39 points in 70 regular-season games with Fort Wayne, fills the void left by Konstantin Shafranov, who was the Komets’ assistant coach before leaving the team Sept 12.

Shafranov is returning to Russia to attend the University of Omsk and enroll in coaches’ training curriculum.

Schaafsma, a 33-year-old forward, helped the Komets to the Western Conference finals last season – he had three goals and nine points in 16 games – before the season ended at the hands of the eventual-champion Allen Americans.

Schaafsma had won championships with Allen in 2013, 2014 and 2015 and went to playoff finals in seven straight years in North American and European hockey.

He will be the assistant to Gary Graham, whose fourth regular season as Fort Wayne’s head coach will begin Oct. 14 at Moline, Illinois, with the home opener coming Oct. 15 against the Quad City Mallards.

The Komets’ roster for training camp is up to 28 players – 15 forwards, nine defensemen and four goalies – including forward Brent Tate and goalie John McLean, who were added Tuesday.

Tate, 24, played three games with Toledo and two with Quad City after finishing his college career at Bowling Green last season. As a senior, he had four goals and 11 points in 36 games.

McLean, 26, was in training camp with the Komets last season and then helped Pensacola to the championship of the lower-level Southern Professional Hockey League. He was 19-10-3 with a 2.39 goals-against average and a .920 save percentage, after a career at Gustavus Adolphus College.

The Komets’ first preseason game will be Oct. 7 at Memorial Coliseum against the Indy Fuel.

jcohn@jg.net