Tommy Sestito's ascent through the ranks of hockey has him back where his journey started: Central New York. The National Hockey League's Columbus Blue Jackets assigned the Utica-born left winger to their top minor league affiliate, the Syracuse Crunch.
Sestito's hockey travails took him to Southeastern Lower Michigan before the 2004-2005 season, where he played three seasons for the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League. Last season, his final in the major junior ranks, Sestito scored 42 goals while amassing 135 penalty minutes and demonstrating the combination of scoring ability and toughness that made Columbus choose him in the third round of the 2006 entry draft.
Tommy Sestito's assignment to Syracuse makes him the second Sestito assigned to an American Hockey League roster. His older brother Tim, a property of the Edmonton Oilers organization, will be toiling with the Springfield Falcons to start the new campaign.
No need for family and friends to choose sides just yet, however. The Crunch and Falcons will not meet during the regular season.
Tommy Sestito and the rest of the Crunch will return to Syracuse for the home opener on October 13, when the Hartford Wolfpack will make a day-trip to the Onondaga County War Memorial at OnCenter.