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Heartlanders add four

Thursday, June 29th
Heartlanders add four

Coralville, Iowa –The Iowa Heartlanders, ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League's Minnesota Wild and American Hockey League's Iowa Wild, added four more players to their 2023-24 roster with the signings of defenseman Chris Lipe and forwards Jesse Jacques, Mike Knaub and Davis Koch. Lipe and Jacques joined Iowa last March from the NCAA ranks and played the final few weeks of the season with the Heartlanders. Each will be a rookie in 2023-24. Lipe manned the blue line at Michigan Tech the last four seasons and Jacques played five years for Minnesota-Duluth.

Lipe had a career-high 10 points in 30 games for Michigan Tech as a senior in 2022-23 and began his professional career with the Heartlanders in late March. Lipe played in at least 29 games all four years at Michigan Tech. Prior to his NCAA career, Lipe skated for Des Moines (2017-18) and Dubuque (2018-19) in the USHL and helped Dubuque qualify for the 2019 Clark Cup Playoffs. He is a native of Rockford, Michigan.

Jacques scored seven points (4g-3a) in 11 games with Iowa after signing his first professional contract on March 19. That total nearly matched the nine points he produced all of last season with Minnesota-Duluth. Jacques won the NCAA title with the Bulldogs in 2018-19 and skated in every game of the 2019 NCAA Tournament. He was a two-time Class A champion at the Minnesota High School Hockey Tournament with Hermantown High School (2015-16 and 2016-17 champ), helping the team to a combined record of 56-3-2 in those two championship seasons. Knaub (6th year pro) and Koch (5th year pro) each played junior hockey in North America but spent the opening seasons of their pro careers in Germany. Koch played 168 career games in Germany’s top-two professional leagues, the DEL and DEL2, from 2019-23 and totaled 104 points (37g-67a). Knaub brings a physical, sandpaper presence forged over 157 games in the DEL2 and the German 3rd pro league, scoring 58 points and earning 437 penalty minutes.

Koch skated in the DEL2 for the most of his career in Germany. His best offensive season came in 2019-20, when he tallied 12 goals and 42 points in 50 games for Heilbronner Falken in the DEL2. He collected 22 points (7g-15a) in the DEL2 for Krefield last season, then added ten points in 12 games in the league playoffs. The Surrey, British Columbia native also appeared in 28 DEL games for ERC Ingolstadt in 2021-22 Koch, 25, wore letters in the Western Hockey League for both the Edmonton Oil Kings (team captain) and Vancouver Giants (alternate captain) and recorded 255 points in 319 WHL games from 2014-19.Knaub has split the first five years of his career in the DEL2 and the German 3rd pro league. Over the last two seasons in the German 3rd league, Knaub has scored 42 points (16g-26a) and produced 121 penalty minutes in 81 games.

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