Cedar Rapids RoughRiders forward Marc McLaughlin returns from injury incurred by teammate

  • Photo

CEDAR RAPIDS — If you can’t beat ‘em, beat ‘em up. If they beat you up, trade for ‘em.

Let’s just say Marc McLaughlin of the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders probably feels a little more comfortable having Kyle Looft as a teammate than an opponent.

McLaughlin returned to the C.R. lineup two weeks ago after missing the first month of the United States Hockey League season with a separated shoulder. He received that injury in a preseason game after taking a hit from Kyle Looft.

That’s the same Kyle Looft the RoughRiders acquired from Dubuque in a trade just before the regular season began.

“Imagine that,” McLaughlin said, with a chuckle. “He just got me with a clean hit. No hard feelings there, obviously. He’s a great kid. It’s funny how it ended up working out.”

Looft, a defenseman, didn’t even know he had injured McLaughlin until McLaughlin informed him of it once they became teammates.

“He had no idea that he did it,” McLaughlin said. “We pulled up their roster and checked the number, and it was like ‘Looft was the one that hit me!’ He was like ‘Oh, I’m so sorry.’ But it’s all right.”

McLaughlin is back now and making an impact with the RoughRiders (5-6-0), who play Friday night at Omaha. He has two goals and two assists in four games.

The 18-year-old from the Boston suburb of North Billerica, Mass., was expected to be a major contributor in his second season in the USHL. He had four goals and 12 assists, playing all 60 games last season for Cedar Rapids.

If he continues to stay healthy, he’ll smash those numbers in 2017-18. McLaughlin was named co-captain of the club Thursday, with Dalton Messina.

Liam Walsh is the assistant captain.

“I’ve felt good,” McLaughlin said. “I think I’ve got a great surrounding cast this year, so it’s been easy making the transition back to playing. Being out of the game like that, honestly, kind of helped a little. I’ve been able to see the game in a different way, in a form I’ve never done before.”

Considered a solid two-way player, McLaughlin has signed his lettter of intent to play for powerhouse Boston College beginning next season. He’ll be joined there by RoughRiders teammate T.J. Walsh.

The two have been friends and hockey teammates since they were 6 years old. Ironically, Walsh is on injured reserve right now with a shoulder injury of his own.

“I just want to add experience and leadership this year,” McLaughlin said. “Translate the two-way game I play back over to try and help our team out.”

In other RoughRiders news, two players and an alumni were included on Central Scouting Service’s most recent list of eligibles for the 2018 National Hockey League Draft. On the list, which was released Wednesday, are Walsh, defenseman Tyler Jubenvill and 2016-17 Riders forward Robert Arrak.

All are listed as ‘C’ prospects, or players likely to be taken in the late rounds of the six-round draft. Jubenvill has two goals and two assists in 11 games this season for C.R.

Arrak had three goals and three assists in 37 games last season for the Riders and is playing this season in Finland.

l Comments: (319) 398-8259; jeff.johnson@thegazette.com

Like what you're reading?

We make it easy to stay connected:

to our email newsletters
Download our free apps

Give us feedback

Have you found an error or omission in our reporting? Tell us here.
Do you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.