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Published: Tuesday, 8/6/2013 - Updated: 11 months ago

Defenseman Oreskovic rejoins Walleye roster

BY MARK MONROE
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

The Walleye have re-signed imposing defenseman Phil Oreskovic, who has racked up 617 penalty minutes in 363 games as a professional.

Oreskovic appeared in 68 games with Toledo last season. He agreed to terms Tuesday. Oreskovic set career highs in assists with 13 and in points with 14 last season.

The stay-at-home defenseman has just seven goals in his seven-year career. Oreskovic finished second on the team with 121 penalty minutes behind fellow defenseman Cody Lampl, who re-signed last month.

“Phil is a strong, tough, physical defenseman,” Walleye coach Nick Vitucci said. “We saw last year what an outstanding hockey player he is.”

Oreskovic, 26, was drafted in the third round of the 2005 NHL draft by the Toronto Maple Leafs — the team he grew up cheering for — and played 10 games for them during the 2008-09 season. He collected a goal and assist with 21 penalty minutes with the Maple Leafs. Most of the penalties were for fighting majors.

The native of North York, Ontario, has spent parts of six seasons playing in the American Hockey League. The 6-foot-3 and 245-pound defenseman played in 56 ECHL games for the South Carolina Stingrays in 2011-12.

Oreskovic returns to the Walleye along with another veteran, captain Kyle Rogers, who re-signed last month. Oreskovic and Rogers teamed with fellow vets Randy Rowe and Wes O'Neill to lead the Walleye to a playoff berth last season.

“The bonus is what a great person he is off the ice and the amazing leadership qualities we saw from him a year ago,” Vitucci said.

On March 24, 2009, Oreskovic scored on a shot from the point that eluded Washington Capitals goalie Jose Theodore in a 3-2 victory.

TICKET INFO: Single-game tickets for regular-season Walleye games go on sale Saturday.

The home opener is at 7:15 p.m. Oct. 26 against Wheeling.

Regular-season tickets will remain at $15 for adults and $13 for children 12-and-under and seniors. Tickets for opening night are $17.

Game-plan ticket packages also are available. The organization is allowing fans to make an appointment to visit Huntington Center, now through Aug. 9, to check out the view from the seats. The organization is holding a youth summer camp at the downtown arena this week.

Game-plan holders also can reserve seats for the Walleye Winterfest, the first-ever ECHL outdoor hockey games, to be held in December of 2014 at Fifth Third Field. There are multiple game plan options to choose from.

AT THE HENS: Current and former Walleye players and coaches will appear at the Mud Hens game Saturday night. They will be recognized during a pregame ceremony and will then sign autographs on the concourse. Walleye tickets can also be purchased at the box office during the baseball game.

Contact Mark Monroe at: mmonroe@theblade.com, 419-724-6354 or on Twitter @MonroeBlade.



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