Snipers Resignings: The Defense
By Jason Felts
As the saying goes, offense wins games, defense wins championships. Coming off the best season in franchise history, the Dallas Snipers look to retain similar success in 2019-20, starting with the defense. A unit that allowed only 227 goals against last season, a massive differential from the 353 allowed in 2017-18, the Snipers aim to continue to lower that number, while improving upon the 139 combined points the defenders put up last year.
Arvidas Domeika (C) - One of the top defenders in all of the WSHL returns for his 3rd season in Snipers blue. The absolute anchor of this Snipers defense, Domeika will once again be the defensive captain for this upcoming season. At just 19 years old, the 6'3, 215 lb Belarusian is a force on the defensive end who embodies the transition into one of the grittiest teams in the division that Dallas has seen over the past few years. Domeika is undoubtedly a mark on any coach's pregame notes, and looks to man a strong defensive unit again in 2019-20.
Alexander Heiskanen - A second-year defender from Sweden, Heiskanen came to life after the Las Vegas Shootout last season, finishing the year with 20 points. At 6'2, 185 lbs, Heiskanen is a long, rangey defender who maneuvers well on the ice, often staying out of the penalty box. With the departure of fellow Swede Simon Birkehorn, look for Heiskanen to take a bigger role on this Snipers defense, stepping in as a fringe starter/second line defenseman with a ton of upside.
Gasper Konc - A Swiss Army Knife of sorts for the Snipers in 2018-19, Konc did a bit of everything to help lead the Snipers to their best statistical season of all time. Konc started the season as a mobile defender with a strong shot from the blue line, but as the season progressed, saw more and more time on the offensive side of the puck, finishing the year with 29 points (14 G, 15A). A phenomenal skater with a flare for the dramatic, look for the Slovenian National Team member to notch a handful of points again in 2019-20, and lock down his spot as a top utility player in the Mid-Western Division.
Nicklas Pehl - Entering his 3rd season in Snipers blue, Pehl has seen the biggest improvement of any returning player for the Snipers this season. Coming in at just 5'9, 165 lbs, the German defender uses his smaller frame to work the puck out of dangerous areas, but isn't afraid to get into the mud with some of the other teams' biggest players. One of the scrappiest players to grace the Starcenter in Plano over the past few seasons, Pehl takes up after fellow undersized players like Eric Eaton, and will continue to raise his ceiling with his work ethic and effort level in 2019-20.
Brady Weiss - The only returning goalie for the Snipers in 2019-20, Weiss laces up for his 4th season in Dallas. After an injury-shortened 2017-18 that bled into the 2018-19 season, Weiss looks to return to form as one of the top goalies in the Snipers organization. Without the presence of former goalkeepers Alexander Aleshkin or Kyle Plantz, the goalie position is open for the taking, and the 6'2 Canadian looks to seize his opportunity this preseason.
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