Joey Ballmer will once again be in goal for the Jamestown Ironmen.
The former Ironmen spent the majority of this season with the Sioux City Musketeers of the United States Hockey League, where he started 26 games and recorded six wins.
Last season, the Michigan native found a home between the pipes in Jamestown and will return to the net for the Ironmen starting as early as today as the team hits the road for a two-game set with the Soo Eagles.
"We are excited to have him back; he was a big part of our team last year," said Ironmen head coach Dan Daikawa. "I am confident he will give us a good chance to pick up some wins and he is likely to start this Friday on the road."
Ballmer went 13-19-5 for the Ironmen during the 2011-12 season, ranked 10th in the NAHL in total saves (1,185) and was part of the 2012 NAHL Top Prospects Tournament.
The 6-foot, 3-inch, 210-pound goaltender was one of the more popular players from last year's Ironmen roster, and despite the team's poor record, was also one of its bright spots.
Ballmer's enthusiasm could be felt right away and was apparent during Wednesday morning's practice.
"I am glad to be back," said Ballmer, who will turn 21 in April. "This is an awesome group to be a part of and I am excited to be part of this team."
Aside from the 16-hour car ride to Jamestown, Ballmer is happy to be back and relieved to know that he will have a home for the remainder of the season.
The Ironmen's situation is much improved from when Ballmer last played for them. With a record of 27-13-4, Jamestown sits six points behind the Soo Eagles in the NAHL North Division and is poised for the playoffs.
The Ironmen are currently on a four-game losing streak and look to Ballmer for a boost this weekend against the Soo. The North Division rivals will battle on Friday and Saturday with a puck drop of 7:30 p.m. both nights.