Originally created 10/11/00

Augusta veteran to return

The Augusta Lynx made cuts and submitted their roster to the league Tuesday.

Jonas Soling wasn't on it, but he will be.

Coach Scott MacPherson learned late Tuesday afternoon that Soling, an East Coast Hockey League all-star with the Lynx in 1998-99, will return to Augusta for a third season.

What that means for MacPherson is a little extra paperwork, but he gladly will take on that task for the chance to bring Soling back into the fold.

"I've seen Jonas play in the American League, and I'm very excited that he's coming back," MacPherson said.

The 22-year-old Soling is under contract with the NHL's Vancouver Canucks, with whom the Lynx were affiliated the past two seasons. But after the Canucks and Lynx ended their relationship, Soling was slated to go to a team in the United or Western Pro leagues after he was cut by Kansas City, Vancouver's affiliate in the International league.

MacPherson said Augusta is where Soling wanted to be, and after working out the details with Soling's agent and Vancouver's brass, the Canucks obliged.

Last season, Soling finished tied for fourth on team in scoring with 22 goals and 31 assists for 53 points. The 6-foot-4 Swede was scheduled to arrive in Augusta on Tuesday night and could be on the ice when the team practices at the IceForum this morning.

"Any time you can add an all-star to your lineup, and someone who is as popular and as well-liked as Jonas is, you've got to be excited," MacPherson said.

MacPherson wasn't nearly as excited Monday, which was cut day in Lynx camp.

The Lynx released four players -- forwards Olivier Lazure, Shawn Allard, Seth Wiener and Jason Garofalo -- trimming the roster to the league limit of 20. Rookies on the bubble who made the cut include forwards Jason Shipulski, Yan Turgeon and Jeff Blanchard.

For salary cap purposes, teams were required to submit rosters to the league by noon Tuesday. The Lynx did so but can add or delete players at anytime as long as the team remains under the cap.

Soling puts the roster at 21, meaning another player will be released or placed on injured reserve before the season-opener Friday night, when the Lynx take on the Greenville Grrrowl at home.

MacPherson also said the team is close to adding an enforcer, but would not mention the names of any possible candidates, although on Sunday he confirmed that the club was pursuing former Toledo tough guy Ken Tasker.

In the ECHL, they come no tougher than Tasker. The 6-foot-1, 210-pounder, who was released by Toledo last week, totaled 438 penalty minutes in only 42 games.

"It's key to have somebody in your lineup that, even if he doesn't play a whole lot, will add that intimidation factor," defenseman Wes Swinson said. "Whatever happens, I think we have enough guys on this team who'll go out and battle."


: With the Providence Bruins' top two goaltenders up in the National Hockey League with Boston, Judd Lambert is the P-Bruins' No. 1 netminder for now.

MacPherson expects Lambert will remain with the American Hockey League club for at least another couple of weeks. Injuries to Boston backup John Grahame and now a hamstring injury to No. 1 goalie Byron Dafoe means the Bruins have rookie Andrew Raycroft and veteran journeyman Kay Whitmore as their goalies. Raycroft and Whitmore entered the preseason expecting to share the duties in Providence.

"Judd is one injury away from being in the National Hockey League," MacPherson said. "I couldn't be happier for him."

MacPherson is much more at ease with Lambert's absence knowing he has two capable goalies in rookies J.R. Prestifilippo and Reg Bourcier. Both played well in the preseason.

"They both have looked great," Swinson said. "J.R. is a highly touted goalie and has proven it so far, and the same goes for Reggie. He played in the (major junior Ontario Hockey League) and faced a lot of shots up there, and he's going to be an excellent goaltender. They both are."


Defenseman Denis Chervyakov, who was the victim of a vicious two-handed slash Saturday night in Charlotte, N.C., will return to practice today. Chervyakov suffered a badly bruised left ankle after Charlotte's David Oliver intentionally struck him with his stick. The incident is under review with the league and Oliver could be slapped with a suspension. ... Shipulski suffered a gash to his forehead in practice Tuesday when his head was slammed into the boards. The cut required four stitches, and he will be back at practice this morning.

Reach Rob Mueller at (706) 823-3425.


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