Jayson Megna has the same goal this season as he had last year, only it’s a little more clearer.
Even though he was a rookie last season, Megna’s goal, like any player in the AHL, was to make the NHL. With Pittsburgh’s depth at forward, Megna never got to suit up for the parent club, but it’s clear he has caught their attention.
The 23-year-old had an impressive rookie tournament in the offseason and replicated that performance during his time in Pittsburgh’s training camp. He survived the first round of cuts before being reassigned on Sunday, and after having spent a few weeks around the NHL club, Megna has a better idea of what he’s after.
“They play the game at the highest level in the world, so when you get a little taste of that it ups your own game,” Megna said. “It was a great experience up there and I’m definitely coming in with a little more confidence.”
And ready to work.
Last season, Megna showed flashes of his offensive prowess and also struggled at times as he transitioned from from college into the pro game. He finished the season registering five goals and 12 points in 56 games.
Now, with a year of pro experience plus the time in Pittsburgh’s training camp, Megna is ready to improve on last year’s numbers.
“I know I still have to prove myself before I get a chance, work on the little things,” he said. “Continue to use my speed, work on my shot and focus on the things I learned up there. It all translates and hopefully it will give me a better shot to go back there.”
The Penguins lost 3-2 in overtime to the Rochester Americans in Wednesday’s preseason opener. Denver Manderson scored for the Penguins in the first period and Paul Thompson added a power play goal later in the game. In net, Eric Hartzell stopped 14-of-16 shots, while Andy Chiodo stopped 15-of-16 in relief. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton went 1-for-2 on the power play and 4-of-6 on the penalty kill.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will host the Rochester Americans in exhibition action on Friday, Sept. 27 at 7:05 p.m. and the Hershey Bears on Sunday, Sept. 29 at 5:05 p.m.