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The Journal Gazette

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette: Jake Kamrass, seen here against Kalamazoo in December, was one of the Komets' top players last season. Kamrass has unexpectedly retired from hockey, the club has confirmed.

Friday, September 20, 2019 2:06 pm

Kamrass unexpectedly retires from hockey

Justin A. Cohn | The Journal Gazette

The Komets' preparations for this season may have taken a hit.

Jake Kamrass, who was one of their top players last season and was expected to be the same this season, has retired.

Komets general manager David Franke confirmed the news today that Kamrass, recently married, had a job opportunity he couldn't pass up.

However, forward is the position in which the Komets are deepest and, Franke believes, they can endure this.

“If you look at our roster, we've got some very good players up front, very good candidates at the forward position,” Franke said. “It's disappointing that Jake won't be back, but we've still got the firepower up front. And that doesn't include anybody we would get from (the club's affiliation with the NHL's Vegas Golden Knights)."

Kamrass, 24, had 17 goals and 51 points in 57 games with Fort Wayne, which had acquired him from South Carolina early last season for Garret Ross -- a deal that enabled the Komets to bring back the ECHL's 2018 leading scorer and MVP, Shawn Szydlowski, from Europe.

Kamrass had already accrued five goals and eight points in 10 games with South Carolina last season, his first full campaign out of UMass-Lowell, and his eventual 59 combined points tied him for fifth among all ECHL rookies in scoring. He wound up seven points back of the leading rookie scorer, Cincinnati's Myles Powell.

Kamrass won the Komets' Rookie of the Year award, was the only Fort Wayne player with a hat trick, had a 12-game point-scoring streak on Memorial Coliseum ice and went on to score one goal in the six-game playoff loss to the Toledo Walleye.

jcohn@jg.net