Jackals Combine Toughness, Skill

By Joe Mink

ELMIRA, N.Y. – The 2007-08 Elmira Jackals ended a playoff drought that marred the previous three seasons.

This year’s team is looking to improve on last year’s first-round exit against the Reading Royals, and the Jackals won’t have long to wait to get another shot at them. Elmira opens its 2008-09 campaign at 7:35 p.m. today against the Royals at First Arena.

Other than defenseman Gord Burnett (ribs), the rest of the team is healthy and ready to go, Jackals coach Steve Martinson said.

Based on cuts made Wednesday, the Jackals appear to favor size. Cornell University graduate Topher Scott (5-foot-6, 155 pounds), Joseph Ori (6-0, 185), Chris Tutalo (5-9, 184) and Ryan Penney (5-9, 190) were all released, but Martinson said he is building a balanced roster.

“I like X amount of physical guys, and I like X amount of skill guys. Some guys had better camps than I thought they’d have, and others didn’t,” he said.

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