Omaha is coming off a disappointing first round series loss to sixth seeded Des Moines. The Lancers were the West division champs, but were unable to solve Des Moines. Omaha will send a lot of kids off to college, so they won't have a whole lot of holdovers for next season.
Mark Olver-Led team in points with 64.
Nick Petrecki-One of the better defenseman.
Chris Hepp-Team leader.
Jarmo Jokila-Excellent player, sniper.
Barry Almeida-Near point per game player.
Corey Toy-Great defenseman.
Drew Palmisano (1988) - Excellent goalie, should be atop the league next season.
Palmisano is an outstanding goalie and should see his stats improve with a full season in Omaha. The Lancers will need to bring in a reliable backup, since they won't be able to keep Michal Valent.
Keir Ross (1989) - Solid and reliable. Should lead defense.
Adam Comrie (1990) - Rumors say he may jump to the OHL.
Will O'Neill (1988) - Good size, might be a bit too streaky.
Their returning defense is really depleted. They lose guys like Petrecki, Hepp, and Toy that were all leaders on defense and were good at their jobs. The Lancers will hope Comrie stays, as he is an excellent talent and could be a top defenseman next season. Ross and O'Neill got some experience and should be ready to go next season.
Matt Thurber (1989) - Small and feisty. Leader material.
Brett Bruneteau (1989) - Could end up going to North Dakota next fall.
Justin Johnson (1988) - Not too productive in his short stint, but was a top player in Wisconsin.
Ben Arnt (1989) - I have a feeling this kid is going to be a stud next season.
Nick Larson (1989) - Could head to Minnesota next fall.
Justin Kirchevel (1989) - Most talented kid in South Dakota.
Joe Beaudette (1988) - Has excellent skill and could be a top forward.
Andrew Conboy (1988) - Breakout year last year, should be leader.
They return a good core in Thurber, Bruneteau, and Conboy. The biggest question marks right now are whether or not Larson and Bruneteau will be around come next fall, or if their college will come calling. Omaha has a lot of young talent up front, led by Larson and Beaudette. Johnson and Arnt could be in for big years.
They have some excellent Minnesota talent, including Danny Kristo, Ben Hanowski, Joey Gleason, and Drew Olson. Kristo is currently playing with the NTDP and will most likely be there next season as well. Omaha's first pick, David Warsofsky, appears to be headed to the NTDP as well. Matt White should be able to come in right away and produce.
Overall Evaluation: C+