Steelheads Assigned Four, Sign One ahead of Tonight's Game
BOISE, Idaho - Idaho Steelheads Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Everett Sheen announced five additions to the lineup ahead of tonight's game against the Utah Grizzlies.
The Texas Stars have assigned forwards Diego Cuglietta and Anthony Nellis, the Dallas Stars have assigned goaltender Colton Point from AHL Texas to the Steelheads, the San Diego Gulls have assigned defenseman Ryan Johnston, and the Steelheads signed defenseman Kenton Helgesen to a Standard Player Contract (SPC) on Wednesday.
Cuglietta, 24, returns for his third stint with the Steelheads following his most recent recall on February 7 to AHL Texas, where he played three games between trips. The Kamloops, B.C. native has played 26 games with Texas over parts of two seasons including 23 games in 2019-20, tallying five points (2-3-5) with a plus-four rating. Cuglietta has earned one assist in five games with the Steelheads over two different stints, most recently on January 31 and February 1 against Rapid City.
The 5-foot-10, 176-pound forward produced 100 points (50-50-100) over his four-year career at Lake Superior State University including 41 points (25-16-44) in his senior campaign in 2018-19. Cuglietta was the fourth skater in school history to reach 100 points and was the 2019 Hobey Baker Award nominee for the Lakers as well as WCHA All-First Team selection. He signed an AHL contract with AHL Texas during the off-season.
Nellis, 25, also joins the Steelheads for his third stint with the team this year after his call-up on February 8 and now has played three games with AHL Texas in his rookie season. The Breackeyville, Que. native has appeared in 41 games with the Steelheads in 2019-20, posting 25 points (13-12-25) with one shorthanded goal and a plus-one rating, sitting second among Steelheads rookies in goals and scoring. He earned his first-career hat-trick on December 31 in Allen and shares the team lead in game-winning goals with three. Since his ECHL debut with the Fort Wayne Komets last year, Nellis owns 33 points (18-15-33) in 51 ECHL games.
The 6-foot, 185-pound forward played four seasons at Lake Superior State University where he totaled 91 points (40-51-91) through 148 games. During his senior season, he was named WCHA Third Team All-Star selection and ranked second in scoring (15-18-33) en route to a nomination for the 2019 Hobey Baker Award. He sat in the top-four on the team in scoring during all four seasons of collegiate play and also signed an AHL contract with AHL Texas during the off-season.
Point, 21, is in his third trip with the Steelheads and owns a 5-8-2 record with a 2.92 goals-against average and a .894 save percentage through 17 games this season. The North Bay, Ont. native has appeared in eight AHL games over the last two seasons and has a 2-4-1 record with a 3.80 GAA and .860 save pct., including a 28-save loss to San Antonio on November 22. In his career with the Steelheads, he hosts a 10-10-4 record with a 3.06 GAA and .891 save pct. in 30 games.
Prior to his professional career, the 6-foot-4, 220-pound goaltender played two seasons with Colgate University, amassing a 18-17-7 record with a 1.90 GAA and .938 save pct. with six shutouts. He was named a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award, Mike Richter Award, ECAC Player of the Year and ECAC Goaltender of the Year while being named CCM Second-Team All-American and earning a gold medal at the IIHF World Junior Championships. He was selected 128th overall (5th Round) by the Dallas Stars in the 2016 NHL Draft.
Johnston, 28, will make his ECHL debut following 14 games with AHL San Diego this season, tabbing six points (1-5-6) with a plus-two rating. The Sudbury, Ont. product played the last two seasons in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL) and led Mora IK defenseman in assists and scoring in 2018-19 with 22 points (3-19-22) through 50 games while adding another 11 points (2-9-11) with Lulea HF the year prior. Johnston played 10 NHL games with the Montreal Canadiens between 2015 and 2017 while making his NHL debut on Apr. 5, 2016 against the Florida Panthers. In 198 professional games between the NHL, AHL and SHL, he owns 76 points (11-60-76) with 102 penalty minutes.
Before his professional career, the 5-foot-10, 179-pound defenseman played three collegiate years at Colgate University from 2012-15, putting together 42 points (5-37-42) through 110 games. He led all Colgate defenseman in assists and scoring during his junior season with 15 points (1-14-15) and signed a two-year contract with Montreal on Jul. 13, 2015 after that season coming out of development camp.
Helgesen, 25, played 19 games with the Evansville Thunderbolts (SPHL) during the 2019-20 season, tallying eight points (2-6-8) with a plus-eight rating. The Grand Prairie, Alb. native made the switch from forward to defense prior to this season after spending last year in Canada. He made his professional debut with the Utah Grizzlies during the 2015-16 season and spent three seasons in the ECHL between Utah, Indy Fuel, Orlando Solar Bears and Norfolk Admirals, last playing in 2017-18 in Norfolk and Orlando with 10 points (5-5-10) in 29 games. Through 110 ECHL games, Helgesen has 38 points (11-27-38) with 87 penalty minutes.
The 6-foot-3, 200-pound defenseman played four seasons with the Calgary Hitmen (WHL) prior to his pro career, boasting 130 points (34-96-130) with 297 penalty minutes and a plus-77 rating through 266 games and serving as team captain during his final year in 2014-15. During that season, he played with defenseman Keegan Kanzig on the roster. He was selected 187th overall (7th Round) by the Anaheim Ducks in the 2012 NHL Draft.
The Steelheads open rivalry week against the Utah Grizzlies this Wednesday, Feb. 26 at 7:10 p.m. from CenturyLink Arena. Tickets are available by calling 208-331-TIXS(8497) or going to idahosteelheads.com.
The Hockey Starter Pack provides the benefits of the ultimate fan on the time you want! Call the Steelheads Front Office at 208-383-0080 to inquire about getting your pack as well as planning your next outing with single-game tickets, flex plans and season tickets. Stay connected to the Steelheads on idahosteelheads.com or by following the team on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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