Wichita, KS (August 17th) – The Wichita Thunder of the Central Hockey League brought back two key pieces from last year's team today, announcing the signings of forward Matt Summers and defenseman Jarred Mohr as well as adding rookie forward Todd Hosmer to the roster for the 2012-13 season.
Summers, 26, enters his sixth season as a pro and second in Wichita. The Savage, Minnesota native led the Thunder in scoring last year with 61 points and was tied for ninth in assists with 42. He was named the Sher-Wood CHL Player of the Month last October and was third in the league in shooting percentage (.202). He beat out three local professional athletes to claim the Greater Wichita Area Sports Commission’s Professional Athlete of the Year Award. Summers became just the fifth Thunder player to win the award that has been presented annually since 1998. Travis Clayton won the award in 2000 and 2008, Jason Duda in 2005 and Joe Blaznek was honored in 2006.
"I’m real excited to come back to Wichita,” said Summers. "I have nothing but good things to say and good memories of my first year here. I am sure a lot of the other players have a bad taste in their mouth the way it ended with us coming up a little short. We won’t be able to get payback against Fort Wayne, but we will try to take out on other teams.”
The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Summers has played in the CHL since turning pro in 2007-08 with the Laredo Bucks. In his rookie season, he registered 12 goals and 23 assists in 57 games. In 2008-09, Summers began the year in Laredo before being traded to the Mississippi RiverKings. He then went on to record 13 goals and 35 assists in 51 games. Summers spent three seasons with the RiverKings before making his way to the Air Capital last year. He had a career-best 61 points and 42 assists a year ago. Overall, Summers has accumulated 88 goals, 151 assists and 239 points in 290 games as a pro.
Mohr, 27, returns to the Thunder for a second season and his seventh as a professional. The 5-foot-11, 185-pounder was acquired in a trade from the Rapid City Rush before last year’s season opener. Mohr also had a career season, registering 38 points in 66 games. He was one of just two players on last year's squad that appeared in every game, running his regular season consecutive-game streak to 132.
"We were so close to bringing a championship to Wichita and I am excited to come back to see if we can get there again,” said Mohr. "As a team, we have some unfinished business here. With the new players that we are signing, I think we are going to be really competitive this year. I am excited to play hockey with these new guys and get the season going.”
A native of Regina, Saskatchewan, Mohr began his pro career in 2006-07 with the ECHL's Pensacola Ice Pilots before being dealt to the Cincinnati Cyclones. He has spent the last four seasons in the CHL, one with the Rocky Mountain Rage and two seasons with the Laredo Bucks. Mohr has registered 25 goals, 91 assists and 116 points in 254 CHL games. In 2009-10, Mohr was selected to the CHL All-Star Team.
Hosmer, 24, comes to Wichita after playing four years of college hockey at the NCAA D-III level. A native of Scarborough, ONT, Hosmer was a stand-out for SUNY Potsdam before transferring to Morrisville State College. He registered 27 goals and 62 points and was tied for eighth in overall points in the SUNYAC in his last full season at Potsdam. The 6-foot-1, 215-pound forward collected 17 goals and 12 assists as a senior with the Mustangs to go along with his 97 penalty minutes.
“Matt and Jarred were a huge part of our hockey club last year and are very excited to be coming back,” commented Head Coach Kevin McClelland. “I am also excited to have Todd on board with us as well. He comes to us after a strong collegiate career and has an edge to his game as well.”
Also, the Thunder announced Friday that they have traded goalie Adam Russo to the Arizona Sundogs in exchange for future considerations.
Wichita Thunder season tickets for 2012-13 are now on sale. A $50 dollar non-refundable deposit is required for all season tickets. Contact the Wichita Thunder Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at (316) 264-4625 if you are interested in season tickets. Stay up-to-date on all the news this off-season by visiting www.wichitathunder.com.
Todd Hosmer photo below, Steve Samoyedny, Four Seasons Photography.