With the 2018-19 North American Hockey League season fast approaching, the New Jersey Titans are ready to kick off the seven-month grind as they start training camp on Monday morning.
A combination of draft picks, tender signings and returning players reported to Middletown Sports Complex on Sunday as they prepare for the week-long camp that will lead into the regular season in September.
The Titans are entering its fourth season in New Jersey, while Craig Doremus will begin his third season as the head coach and general manager. The team has qualified for the Robertson Cup Playoffs in all three seasons, but have yet to advance to the final tournament in Blaine, Minnesota. Coming off a first-round exit to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights last May, Doremus is determined to bring his squad to the next level.
“The start of training camp is obviously an exciting time for our franchise. The next group of New Jersey Titans enters the building and begins to work towards their goal of a Robertson Cup,” Doremus said. “It has been a long offseason with many hours put into the preparation of the 2018-19 season, and the coaching and scouting staffs have worked extremely hard to put together what we believe is a great group of young men to represent the Titan franchise the right way.”
Spanning Monday through Thursday, the Titans will rotate between on-ice practices, off-ice workouts and team building exercises. The team will take a break on Friday and head to Asbury Park for a beach day. Training camp will then conclude with Titans’ Day on Saturday, where players will be introduced to the public and will skate with fans and family members. A final red vs. black scrimmage will start at 4:30 p.m. and is open to the public.
Doremus added that training camp will set the tone for the Titans’ season, which starts on September 14 when they visit the Maryland Black Bears. The home opener is on September 28 against the Johnstown Tomahawks.
“The players have worked long and hard in their off season training to prepare for this. To achieve greatness you must vision it first,” Doremus said. “Today we put the vision to the forefront and begin to put the work in together to achieve our goal. We have been itching to get back here and we are so excited to open our camp.
“We look forward to the hard days of camp but also being able to assimilate our players into our youth organization and the local Middletown community. We hope to see and meet many fans over the next few weeks as we build up in anticipation of our home opener on Friday, September 28.”