8/31/98 Warroad Loses Another to the Stars
Chad Hontvet, a 6'1", 198 lb. right wing from Warroad (Minn.) High School, will be playing this season with the Lincoln Stars of the USHL.
Hontvet joins Warroad defenseman Lee Marvin, who signed earlier in the summer with the Stars, coached by Steve Johnson. Both players will be attending high school in Nebraska, , Marvin as a senior and Hontvet as a junior. Both players are grandsons of Warroad hockey legend Cal Marvin.
Warroad High coach Cary Eades isn't commenting on the departures of his two players.
The irony in all this is that Warroad has benefitted from players they've taken from other areas. In recent years, top players like Wyatt Smith of Thief River Falls and Adrian Harsbargen of Indus took advantage of Minnesota's liberal high-school transfer rules, moved to Warroad, and played for Eades' teams.
Before taking the Warroad job, Eades coached in the USHL, with Dubuque.
Hontvet, who's an '82, was asked to join the National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, but has opted for the USHL. He's a power forward type who, for his size and youth, possesses a surprising amount of quickness and agility.
Marvin, an '81, is a 6'0", 176 lb. left-shot offensive defenseman.
Our Pat Burns Lays Down the Badge
Jim Hunt, who's assisted the National Team Development Program for the last two years while also holding down a job as a police detective in the Fort Lee, N.J. police department will be coaching full-time in Ann Arbor this season. In recent years, Hunt has also coached the New Jersey Junior Devils and U.S. Select teams from the Atlantic/Southeastern district. He's also served as District Director of Player Development for the Atlantic/S.E.
Four Year Molnar Revisited
In July, we told you about the saga of Ontario goaltender Aaron Molnar, the top goalie selected in the OHL Draft. In the end, Peterborough increased their education package some, but not enough to entice Molnar in to giving up his college eligibility. Molnar will return to the St. Thomas Stars with an eye towards going to an NCAA school in the fall of 1999. He recently took an official visit to Ohio State.
Other OHL Notes
Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds third round pick Murray Magill has decided not to attend the team's training camp. The Soo had hoped to convince Magill to come at the last minute, much like Ryan Jardine (who had committed to Clarkson) did last summer. The 6-1/175 right wing will play for Gary Wenzel's Thunder Bay Flyers this year. Michigan has expressed an interest in Magill.
Kingston has signed their first four picks Brett Cloutier, Morgan McCormick, Daryl Thomson, and Nathan Tennant. Owen Sound has also signed their first four picks Chris Minard, Corey Roberts, Mike Barrett, and Brent Sullivan.
Brad Boyes, Erie's 1st round selection, may not sign with the Otters. He's an Ivy level student, and may be tempted to explore the college route.
Changes Possible at Next Year's 17 Festival
An idea being discussed for the 1999 U.S. Select 17 Festival involves picking the top 40 prospects at the conclusion of the festival and asking them to stay on in St. Cloud to compete in a mini-tournament that would also include forty of the country's top 18-year-olds.
The goal is this: Right now, after three straight years of being able to compete in USA Hockey Select Festivals, top 18-year-olds have no showcase of their own. A select group, of course, become immediate candidates for the U.S. World Junior Team and head off to Lake Placid. Others, those who are considered not quite ready for the national junior team as 18-year-olds but may well be candidates a year later, at 19, would come into St. Cloud after the 17 Festival is complete, practice for a couple of days and then take part in a round-robin evaluation tournament.
The most likely present scenario calls for four teams of 20 players, each consisting of ten 81's (i.e. the 18-year-olds) and ten 82's (the 17-year-olds). The 17-year-olds would be picked at the conclusion of the traditional Select 17 Festival, the format of which would remain unchanged.
A New Season, a New Home
The Syracuse Junior Crunch, which played in the Toronto Metro Junior A League last year, have moved 20 miles south, to the Casey Park Ice Arena in Auburn, N.Y., a small city of about 20,000 located on the north shore of Lake Owasco, one of the Finger Lakes.
The club, now known as the Auburn Crunch, began tryouts today in Fulton, N.Y. under head coach Don Kirnan. The returnees from last season are forwards Cody Wojdyla, Don Patrick, Sharam Fouladgar-Mercer, and Aaron Linzenberg; defensemen Jeremy Downs and Matt Maglione; and starting goaltender Tim Hall.
Brekelmans Stings College
Cory Brekelmans of Strathroy Jr. B has signed with the Sarnia Sting. The Sting selected the 6-0/180 defenseman in the fifth round of the OHL Draft. OHL Central Scouting rated Brekelmans 12th overall in their final rated list, but many teams passed on him as he had indicated a desire to play college hockey in the U.S.
In related OHL news, defenseman Aaron Mackenzie, Owen Sound's fourth round pick, has signed with Gary Wenzel's Thunder Bay Flyers (USHL). He had also been considering the BCHL.
Also, defenseman Ryan Carrigan, who played last season for the Bozeman (MT) Ice Dogs in the Frontier League, has signed with the Milton Merchants (OPJHL).
Forward Mike Lee, who played last season for the U.S. Under-18 Team, has signed with the Tri-City Americans (WHL).
Contrary to popular belief, Twin Cities Vulcans goaltender Jason Jensen is not going to the University of Minnesota. In fact, he has already told the Minnesota staff that he is not interested in attending their school. Jensen has drawn interest from Boston University, Bowling Green, Nebraska-Omaha, and Wisconsin. Jensen, along with U.S. Under-18 goaltender Rick DiPietro, is one of the top American '81 goalie prospects.
Mass. Defenseman Slonina Comes Up Big in OT
North Andover, Mass. -- A slapshot from the slot by defenseman Steven Slonina (BC High) at 8:25 of overtime gave the Mass. All-Stars a hard-fought 6-5 win over the Russian Select 17 team Friday night at Hockey Night in Boston.
Earlier, the game had been tied up three diffferent times -- at 3-3, 4-4, and, after the late third-period goal by Mikhail Kuleshov that would force overtime, 5-5.
In the first period, Mass broke out to an early 3-0 lead on the strength of goals from Mike Ryan (BC High), Mike Warner (Arlington Catholic), and Mike Murray (Nobles). Then the Russian 17's came back with consecutive goals from Alexander Evstegneev, Stepan Mokhov, and Alexander Buturlin to tie it up by the break.
In the second period, Josh Prudden put Mass up by a goal but the Russians got it back on a tip-in by Anton Sokolov.
In the third, BU-bound center Brian Collins snapped a wrister past Russian goaltender Eugeni Konstantinov to give Mass the 5-4 lead. It didn't hold up, but no matter -- Slonina came through for Mass., bailing out his teammates in OT.
For Mass., Collins had a three-point night (1g,2a), while defenseman Trevor Byrne had two assists.
In the early game, New England, behind a pair of goals from David Hogan (National Sports Academy), beat Mid-Ameria, 7-3.
New England's other goals were scored by Greg O'Leary (Avon Old Farms), John Lobisser (Tilton), Brad D'Arco (Taft), Dominic Lacasse (Notre Dame Hounds), and Brock Barton (Georgetown Raiders).
Kevin Audit (Gunnery) and Denis Nam (Taft) scored for Mid-America.
The losers -- Mid-America and the Russian 17's -- will meet today (Sat.) at 4 pm, while the winners -- Massachusetts and New England -- will meet at 6:15 pm.
8/21/98 South Shore Takes the Hardware
North Andover, Mass. -- In last night's Hockey Night in Boston championship game, the South Shore capped off its undefeated (13-0-0) summer with a 4-3 win over the Mid-West.
Despite falling behind 2-0 early, South Shore, on goals by Brian Teixeira (Cushing), Mark Concannon (Hull HS), and Peter Trovato (CM) took the lead for good mid-way through the second period. Cushing's Brian Doherty added a goal with a couple of minutes left in the game to seal the win.
Dennis Nam (Taft) scored all three of Mid-West's goals, two of them coming 28 seconds apart in the first period.
South Shore defensemen Trevor Byrne (Deerfield) and John Cronin (Nolbes) were named co-MVP's.
Russians Too Much for Sophs...
In the preliminary game, the Russian National Select 17 Team pasted the Sophomore All-Stars, 8-0.
Although St. Paul's goaltender Matt Hanson kept the Russians off the board in the first period, it was just a matter of time before the Russians broke through -- and took the Sophs to school.
Russians who looked particularly good included forwards Andrei Shefer, Mikhail Kuleshov, Anton Sokolov, and Alexander Buturlin. Kirill Safronov was the Russian's best defenseman last night. All are eligible for next June's NHL draft.
...Face Seniors Tonight
Tonight, the All-Star games begin (see rosters below) with New England playing Mid-America at 6 p.m., and the Russians playing Massachusetts at 8:15.
The latter game should be a pretty good test. The Mass kids are a good bit older -- 16 of their players are either '80's or '79's, while the Russians, of course, are all '81's.
Mass. forwards, i.e. tournament-leading scorer Brian Collins (20-20-40 in 12 games), Paul Kelly, and Brad Nizwantowski will have to solve the Russian defense, while defensemen John Cronin, Trevor Byrne and a host of goalies will have to be very sharp to keep the Russians from solving them.
If you're in the neighborhood, stop by, but stop at an ATM first. It's $10 to get in.
Tonight's losers will meet Saturday at 4 p.m, with the winners meeting at 6:15 in the finals. An exhibition game on Sunday will pit the Russian Select 17's against the All-Star Juniors at 4 p.m..
Here are the rosters:
FORWARDS: Kevin Audit (Gunnery); Justin Postiglione (Trinity-Pawling); Matt Bedwell (Choate); Evan Kearns (Culver); Ryan Miller (Culver); Jon Grabie (Williston); Aaron Kim (Deerfield); Jeremy Weiss (Utah Valley Golden Eagles); Dennis Nam (Taft); Steve Novodor (Tabor); Craig Wadman (Choate). DEFENSEMEN: Brian Luburich (Edgewood HS -- Wisc.); Jesse Van Nostrand (Shattuck-St.Mary's); Connor Hills (Northwood); Jesse Minneman (Hotchkiss); Scott Jackson (Loomis); Evan Nielsen (Taft); Bill Gilchrist (Deerfield); Brett Naugle (Lawrence Academy). GOALTENDERS: Max Feldman (Shattuck- St.Mary's); Dan Weinreib (Choate); Yan Claremont (N. Allegheny HS -- Penn.). SELECTED BUT UNABLE TO ATTEND: F: Chad Marqui (Lake Forest Academy -- Ill.); Trent Flory (Culver) D: Mike Noel (N. Iowa Huskies -- USHL) G: Mike Walsh (Waterloo -- USHL). COACHES: Ted Kelly (Pomfret); Larry Rocha (Berkshire).
FORWARDS: Mike Warner (Arlington Catholic); Brad Nizwantowski (Cushing); Paul Kelly (Northfield-Mt.Hermon); Mike Ryan (BC High); Jeremy Wilson (Cushing); Mark Concannon (Winchendon); Josh Prudden (Exeter); Jaymie Harrington (St. John's-Shrewsbury); Tim Calabro (Billerica HS); Brian Collins (St. John's-Shrewsbury); Scott Trahan (Chelmsford HS); Mike Murray (Nobles). DEFENSEMEN: Nick Cammarata (St. Sebastian's); Eric Pedersen (Saugus HS); John Cronin (Nobles); P.J. Martin (St. John's Prep); Steve Slonina (BC High); Tony Johnson (Canterbury); Dominic Torretti (Avon Old Farms); Trevor Byrne (Deerfield); Kevin Truelson (Archbishop Williams HS). GOALTENDERS: Jaffrie Perrotti (Phillips Andover); Marc Barron (Hanover HS); Brad Stalter (New Bedford HS); Justin Jagher (Roxbury Latin). COACHES: Brian Murphy (St. John's-Shrewsbury); Mike Addesa (Boston Junior Bulldogs).
FORWARDS: Tye Korbl (Deerfield); Pat Hutchins (Northfield-Mt.Hermon); Chris Vail (Lawrence); D.J. Pelletier (Tilton); David Hogan (National Sports Academy); Greg O'Leary (Avon Old Farms); Gerry Hickey (Xaverian); John Lobisser (Tilton); Brad D'Arco (Taft); Dominic Lacasse (Notre Dame Hounds); Shawn Sheehan (Medford HS); Rob Harvey (Choate). DEFENSEMEN: Steve Aubuchon (Pomfret); Mark Murphy (Bishop Hendricken); Steve Calderera (Hill); Jay Goebel (Hotchkiss); Greg Boucher (Phillips Exeter); Brock Barton (Georgetown Raiders -- Ont.); J.F. Auffrey (St. Paul's); Mike Velez (Junior Coyotes). GOALTENDERS: Trapper Clark (Berkshire); Todd Marr (Avon Old Farms); Bob Doran (Jr. Bruins). COACHES: Jim Creamer (LaSalle HS -- R.I.); Bill Maniscalco (Choate).
All-Star Juniors (i.e. 11th Graders)
FORWARDS: Paul Muniz (Tabor); Tom Cavanaugh (Tollgate HS -- R.I.); Tim Pettit (Taft); Chris Owen (Nobles); Kurt Wright (Cushing); Steve Saviano (Reading HS); Sean Kotary (Loomis); Brian Doherty (Cushing); Sean Terry (Northwood); Scott Horvath (Avon Old Farms); Adam Foote (Hotchkiss); Jason Hong (Junior Hurricanes). DEFENSEMEN: Jeff Dwyer (Choate); Mick Mounsey (Avon Old Farms); Mike Turner (Phillips Andover); Kevin Darcy (Nobles); Michael Komisarek (Jr. Coyotes); Steve Wood (Lawrence Acad.); Bob DeLong (Tabor); Peter Tormey (Cath. Memorial). GOALTENDERS: John Czaplinski (Buffalo Saints); Dave Cacciola (Burlington HS -- Mass.) SELECTED BUT UNABLE TO ATTEND: D: Ken Smith (U.S. Under-18 Team). COACHES: Mike Addesa (Boston Junior Bulldogs); Ted Kelley (Pomfret).
A couple of weeks ago, we mentioned that Lincoln Stars 5'4", 143 lb. forward Chris Fournier might be going to a WHL training camp (Cranbrook). Won't happen -- he'll be back in Lincoln.
More recently, we reported that Barrett Heisten was considering dropping the idea of college and instead signing with the Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL). Well, his considering is done (for now, anyway) and he's decided to give college a chance. Look for him in Orono, Maine in a couple of weeks. Heisten, by the way, was one of the top U.S. Forwards at last week's U.S. Junior Camp in Lake Placid. (By the way, look for more on the junior camp as well as a recap of the Select 15 festival in this space shortly.)
We also reported that 6'2" Taft defenseman Evan Nielsen was mulling an offer from the U.S. National Program to spend his senior year with the Under-18 Team. Well, the mulling is over. Earlier this week, Nielsen decided to return to Taft.
8/20/98 The Russians are Coming; Send Reinforcements!
The Russian National Select 17 Team begins play at 5 p.m this afternoon (Thurs. 8/20) vs. the Sophomore All-Stars at Hockey Night in Boston. Among the Russian players -- all '81's -- will be 6'1", 181 lb. St. Petersburg defenseman Kiril Safronov and 5'11, 172 lb. CSKA forward Alexander Buturlin, both top prospects for the 1999 NHL draft, to be held in Boston next June.
Here's the rest of the Russian roster:
FORWARDS: Renat Khairetdinov, Alexander Evstegneev, Alexander Drozdetsky, Roman Goryanikov, Alexander Buturlin, Anton Sokolov, Mikhail Kuleshov, Maxim Orlov, Evgeni Pavlov, Andrei Shefer, Andrei Kuzmin. DEFENSEMEN: Vladislav Bykov, Roman Rozakov, Stepan Mokhov, Kiril Safronov. GOALTENDERS: Leonid Kudryashov, Eugeni Konstantinov. COACH: Alexander Golikov. Team Manager: Vladimir Lokotko.
The Sophomore All-Stars top player is 5'7", 155 lb. forward Sean Collins of Reading High School.
Here's the rest of the Sophs roster, all 35 of them, so at least they have the Russians outnumbered. However, only three will turn 17 by the end of the calendar year, so pray for jet lag.
FORWARDS: Andrew Madeiros (Matignon); Scott Darci (Phillips Andover); Luke Parillo (Albany Academy); Jon Foster (Suffern); Tim Graham (St. Paul's); Tyler Wells (Avon Old Farms); Billy Colella (Melrose); Nick Carroll (KUA); Ryan Stevens (Lawrence Academy); Jared Beach (Taft); Christien Joubert (St. Joseph's -- Indiana); Ned Havern (Arlington HS); Nathan Cook (KUA); Erik Kent (Lawrence Academy); Mark Noble (CM); Kevin Richardson (NMH); Josh Angevine (Cushing). DEFENSEMEN: Ryan Foster (NMH); Eric Murtaugh (Gunnery); K.C. Thomson (St. John's-Shrewsbury); Matt Desmarais (Xaverian); Mike Cavanaugh (Hingham); Dan Boudreau (Arlington Catholic); Rob Bergen (Exeter); Scott Ward (Phillips Andover); Joe Ciocco (KUA); Joe Callahan (BC High); Matt Windhol (Bishop Guertin); Keith McWilliams (Hurricane Midgets -- Calif.). GOALTENDERS: Thomas Rogerson (Fredericton Bantam AAA -- New Brunswick);Joshua Berman (Lyndon Institute -- Vt.); Tim Warner (Arlington Catholic); Matt Hanson (St. Paul's); Rory Walsh (Milton Acad.) COACHES: Peter Doherty (Reading); Dan Shine (Arlington Catholic).
8/15/98 Todd Jackson Joins National Program
Right wing Todd Jackson, coming off a strong performance two weeks ago at the Select 17 Festival, will be leaving Hotchkiss School effective immediately to join the National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Jackson, a native of Cortland, N.Y., is 5-9½, 147 pounds, and would have been a junior this fall at Hotchkiss, where he's played for the last two years. Before that, he played at Cardigan Mountain.
At the Select 17's, Jackson, who played for the New England team, had a 5-3-8 scoring line in six games, and opened a lot of eyes.
One of Jackson's teammates in Ann Arbor will be J.D. Forrest, a Hotchkiss teammate from two years ago. Jackson's linemate at Hotchkiss, Brett Nowak, was asked last year and again this year to join the National Program, but has opted to stay at Hotchkiss.
USA West Takes Bronze at Lake Placid
The USA West beat Switzerland, 4-1, to take the bronze medal at the 1998 USA Hockey Summer Challenge today.
For the US, Notre Dame's Dan Carlson and the Under-18 Team's Adam Hall led the way with a goal and an assist. Brett Henning and Mike Pandolfo also scored. Scott Gomez, Andy Hilbert, Willie Levesque, Erik Westrum, Justin Morrison, and Andrew Hutchinson each chipped in with an assist.
Shawn Timm went all the way in the US net; Marco Buhrer did likewise for Switzerland.
Switzerland's goal was scored by Luca Cereda.
The team the U.S. put on ice today -- with the consent of the Swiss coach -- was a bit of a hybrid team, with the West borrowing seven players from the East team to enable the coaches to get one more look at them for evaluation purposes. Pat Aufiero, Jay Leach, Kevin Mitchell, Brett Henning, Willie Levesque, Ryan Murphy, and Mike Pandolfo all skated in West uniforms today.
NMH's Kelly in Quebec at Remparts Tryout
Northfield-Mt.Hermon winger Paul Kelly has taken the weekend off from Hockey Night in Boston action to try out with the QMJHL's Quebec Remparts. It's a 48-hour tryout so his NCAA eligibility is protected. BC and Michigan are both interested in Kelly.
8/14/98 US West Edges US East, 2-1
Lake Placid, N.Y. -- A powerplay goal by Adam Hall late in the second period spelled the difference as the U.S. West beat the East, 2-1, in the early game at USA Hockey's Summer Challenge.
In the first period, East broke out to a 1-0 lead when, with Aaron Dwyer in the box for holding, defenseman Pat Aufiero walked down the slot and fired a wrister past West goaltender Adam Hauser at 18:06. Brooks Orpik picked up an assist on the play.
Midway through the second period, the West's Tyler Arnason dug a puck out of the corner and got it in front, where Alex Kim fired it past East goaltender Chris Madden.
Hall's winning goal came out of a scrum in front of the East net. Madden kicked out three straight shots in quick succession, until Hall just whacked at a rebound, and it went in at the 17:09 mark.
In the nightcap, Suomi topped Suisse, 4-1.
The Select 17 Festival: Our Picks
Here are the players who stood out for us at the Select 17 Festival, held July 25-August 1 in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
Jeff Taffe, C, 6-1½/161, Minnkota -- A notch above the rest. Taffe is a smooth skater with soft hands and a lanky frame that will fill out in time. Is returning to Hastings HS for his senior year, then going to the U.
Brett Nowak, C, 6-2/181, New England -- A power forward with size and hands. Competes. Will be returning to Hotchkiss for his senior year, then going pretty much wherever he wants -- BC, Michigan, Harvard, Yale.
Brad Winchester, C, 6-4½/200, Central -- A year in the National Program lifted this former Wisconsin's high school player into a bone fide power forward. Winchester is looking at Wisconsin, Colorado College, Michigan State, and Notre Dame.
Andy Hilbert, C, 5-10½/190, Michigan -- One of only two '81's -- Erie's Tim Connolly is the other -- who could be going to Winnipeg with the World Junior Team. As a mattter of fact, Hilbert's in Lake Placid now, and having a strong tournament, notching a hat trick against Switzerland on Tuesday.
Dan Welch, LW, 5-10½/196, Minnkota -- He and linemate Taffe look like they've been playing together for 10 years -- and they have. After their senior season at Hastings (the coach there is Welch's dad, Russ, the former Michigan State star), the pair are off to the U together.
Connor Dunlop, C, 5-9½/184, Central -- Few can hit the open man as smartly as Dunlop. Jerry York would love to have him at the Heights.
Joe Cullen, C, 6-0½/176, Minnkota -- Almost immediately, it was clear that his spring workout regimen had made him stronger, and lifted his game another notch. Cullen had a tremendous week -- and before it was over he'd been asked to join the National Program in Ann Arbor. He accepted.
Todd Jackson, RW, 5-9½/147, New England -- One of the festival's revelations. He's no longer merely Brett Nowak's Hotchkiss linemate -- he's a big-time player in his own right. Earlier this week, he received an offer to join the National Program, and, as this is written, it's being seriously weighed.
Jon DiSalvatore, RW, 6-0½/175, New England -- A physical presence -- and a goal scorer, too. Plays for Gary Dineen's New England Coyotes.
Shawn Roed, RW, 5-7½/173, Minnkota -- Speed and puck skills. Played on the Taffe-Welch line. Had academic problems living on his own last year in Ann Arbor, so he's returning home to the Twin Cities. Will play for the Vulcans.
John Sabo, RW, 5-8/175, Atlantic/S.E. -- Extremely hard-nosed and skillful, too. Will be a junior in the National Program.
Jason Guerriero, LW, 5-6/184, New York -- Flat-out competes. Scored the OT goal to beat Minnkota in the gold-medal game. Beat one D at the blue line, turned another near the face-off dot, and capped off the rush by beating goaltender Jason Jensen with a perfect shot -- highlight film stuff. Will be playing in the USHL with the Dubuque Fighting Saints this coming season.
Billy Kelly, RW, 5-10½/169, Mass.-- Best forward on his team. Plays both ways. Will be a senior at Catholic Memorial. BU and Harvard are among the schools interested in him.
Josh Anderson, RW, 5-7/180, Minnkota -- Rugged, competes, and skates like the wind.Will be a junior at Fergus Falls HS.
Tristan Lush, C, 6-0/173, Rocky Mt. -- An at-large player from Massachusetts (Belmont Hill) who opened some eyes. Lush has size, is hard to knock off the puck, and can score.
Rob Fried, RW, 6-1½/180, Atl./S.E. -- One of the festival's sleepers. Fried is a big, strong winger who looks like he's just coming into his own. Will be a junior at Deerfield.
Evan Wax, LW, 6-0/187, Pacific -- He's not a pretty skater, but he has good size, a good stick, and a real head for the game. Moves the puck quickly, and makes things happen. Plays for Apple Core.
Adam Foote, C, 5-11½/182, New York -- Foote's a big two-way center who helped his team to the gold medal by shadowing Nowak in the semis and Taffe in the championship game. Played last year for New Hartford (NY) HS.Will be going to Hotchkiss as a repeat junior.
Others deserving mention include: Patrick Foley (Mass.), Justin Flaishans (Rocky Mt.); Steve Jackson (Mich.); Justin Kinnunen (Mich.); Tyler Kolarik (Atl/S.E.); Jon Francisco (Minn.); Jesse Modahl (Minn.); Troy Riddle (Minn.); Dave Iannazzo (Minn.); Drew Bucktooth (N.Y.); Ryan Bennett (N.Y.); Rich Hansen (N.Y.); and John Wroblewski (Central).
Scoring leaders, all with 6 games played: Welch (7-5-12); Cullen (4-7-11); Taffe (5-5-10); Nowak (2-8-10); Roed (4-6-9); Jackson (5-3-8); DiSalvatore (3-5-8); Hansen (0-8-8); Pettit (4-3-7); Guerriero (4-3-7); Francisco (1-6-7).
Paul Martin, LD, 6-1/153, Minnkota -- A pure athlete. Great skater. Long stride. Top rated D for the second year in a row. Was invited to the National Program, but will be staying at Elk River High -- he's the quarterback on the football team.
Rico Fatticci, LD, 5-10½/176, Minnkota -- Quick. Very dangerous offensively. Effective in his own end. Opened eyes at the Model Camp, and did it again at the 17's. Will be a senior at Hibbing High, the alma mater of Bob Dylan and Kevin McHale.
Evan Nielsen, RD, 6-2/195, Central -- Excellent size and athleticism. Probably the least-polished D on this list, but his best hockey's in front of him. Great upside. Played for Taft last season after playing high school hockey in Illinois in '96-97. Has been invited to the National Program.
J.D. Forrest, LD, 5-8/165, New York -- Played well all week, but played really well in the biggest game of the tournament -- the gold-medal winner over Minnkota.
Freddy Meyer, LD, 5-9/180, New England -- A rugged hard-nosed defenseman who brings offense without sacrificing defense.
Steven Wood, RD, 6-1½/187, Mass. -- The leading scorer among all D's at the festival. . Had a big week, coming up with key plays at both ends. Will be a junior at Lawrence Academy, where he plays for stentorian coach Charles Nelson Corey.
Matt DeMarchi, LD, 6-2½/172 Rocky Mt. -- DeMarchi, who plays for the North Iowa Huskies (USHL), started out a little slowly but picked it up at the end.
Jason Platt, LD, 6-0½/205, Pacific -- A rugged, steady defenseman who can handle the puck. A Californian, Platt played at Cushing last year. Will be moving on to the Omaha Lancers (USHL).
Beau Geisler, LD, 5-11/180, Minnkota -- Crafty, puckhandling defenseman who can skate and has decent size. Improved a lot over the past year. Will be a senior at Greenway.
Lee Marvin, 6-0/176, Minnkota -- Has size and skating ability. Played for Warroad High and is moving on to the USHL's Lincoln Stars.
Jeremy Downs, LD, 6-0/187, Pacific -- Played some D at the festival, and played up front, too. We actually like him a bit more as a forward. Played for the Alaska All-Stars last year. This year, it'll be the Rochester Mustangs (USHL).
Others deserving mention include: Jason Reimers (Minn.); Brian Fahey (Central); Kevin Truelson (Mass.); Bryan Skrypek (Minn.); Mike Roemensky (Mich.); P.J. Martin (Mass.); Tommy Watkins (Rocky Mt.); Paul Harris (New England); Brett Peterson (Mass.); Phil Goebel (Mid-Am); Lee Green (Pacific); Richard Hwodecky (Mid-Am); Andy Burnes (Mich.); and Ken Smith (Mass.).
Scoring leaders -- defensemen only. All played 6 games unless noted: Wood (5 games played, 5-2-7); Meyer (4-2-6); Fatticci (2-3-5); Geisler (0-4-4); Marvin (0-4-4).
Chris Gartman, 5-8½/148, New York -- The hero of New York's big overtime upset of Minnkota. Absolutely stood on his head. Played last year for Apple Core. This year he'll be going to the National Program in Ann Arbor.
Rob Bonk, 6-4/178, Michigan -- Bonk, who plays for the U.S. Under-19 Team, just fills up the net, and doesn't leave much room for anything to get by him.
Jason Jensen, 6-3/194, Minnkota -- Ditto. Plays for the St. Paul Vulcans (USHL).
Rick DiPietro, 5-11/175, Mass. -- Didn't have a particularly good week, but he's a good one. BC, BU, and Harvard all want him on board.
Paul Morrissey, 5-10/205, Rocky Mt. -- One of the festival's sleepers. Morrissey is an athletic goalie who moves post-to-post as quickly as anyone his age. Will be a senior at Governor Dummer, a Mass. prep school.
Ryan MacNeil, 5-10½/165, Mass. -- Never seems to get rattled. Very cool -- and underrated. Plays for Cushing Academy.
Rob Miller, 6-2½/194, Atl/S.E. -- Nothing flashy. Just uses his size and gets in front of the puck. Keeps getting better. Plays at the Westminster School in Connecticut.
Others deserving mention include: Adam Berkhoel (Minn.); Michael Betz (Mid-Am); Shawn Conschafter (N.Y.); Mike Healey (New England); Nick Martin (Rocky Mt.); and Michael Wolfe (New England).
8/13/98 U.S. East Easily Defeated, but U.S. West Loses a Tough One
Lake Placid, NY -- It was a tough night for the hosts of the USA Hockey Summer Challenge.
In the early game, Niklas Hagman and Jussi Pesonen each had a pair of goals and Mika Lehto picked up the shutout as Finland, wearing the Snickers logo, drubbed the U.S. East squad, 7-0. Marco Tuokko, Mikka Mannikko, and Tommi Hannus (shorthanded) also scored for Finland.
According to the official scorer, who may as well have been watching from Pluto, Phillipe Sauve made 48 stops in the U.S. net, while Lehto made 44 stops for Finland. (More reliable sources have it 38 saves for Sauve, and 22 for Lehto.) On two of the goals against Sauve, Finnish players were in the crease. It made no difference -- both goals stood.
In the late game, Sweden took a 3-0 lead over the USA West squad after two periods. If the first forty minutes were a reliable indicator, the last twenty minutes looked to be the discouraging end to a long night.
But then the Americans woke up -- and almost stole the game back from the Swedes.
An early 5-on-3 power play gave the U.S. a break, and at 3:22 defenseman Kevin Holdridge blasted home a shot from the point for the first U.S. goal in five-plus stanzas. Assists went to Chris St. Croix and Erik Westrum.
At the 9:08 mark, Scott Gomez scooped a rebound over Swedish goaltender Mikael Tellqvist, cutting the Swedes lead to one, and making things even more interesting. Assists on the play went to defensemen Andrew Hutchinson and Jordan Leopold.
After that, the U.S. team worked hard for that elusive tying goal, coming close with several excellent opportunities. However, Sweden's big defensemen made it difficult for the U.S. forwards to get in tight and jump on any loose pucks.
At the end, numerous little flare-ups had the slightly-over-their-heads officials running around, desperately attempting to keep a lid on things. All in all, they succeeded, but they got lucky, too.
On the game, Sweden outshot the U.S. 18-17. Tellqvist was in net for Sweden, and Joe Blackburn for the U.S. Both had strong games.
Goal scorers for Sweden were Viktor Wallin, Marcus Kristoffersson, and Niklas Nordgren.
Sweden thus completes the round-robin portion of the tournament with a 4-0-0 record. Their next game will be Saturday night at 8 p.m. in the gold medal game vs. Finland. USA East plays USA West tomorrow at 5 p.m., and are likely to also meet in Saturday's 3rd place game.
By the way, David Legwand's shoulder injury is a minor ACL strain. He'll be OK shortly, but won't play again for the durration of the tourneament.
8/12/98 Finland Beats USA West, 8-5; Legwand Hurt
Lake Placid, N.Y. -- Midway through the third period of USA West's 8-5 loss to Finland tonight (Wed. 8/12), center David Legwand slid hard into the boards behind the Finland net after a missed scoring opportunity.
Legwand skated to the bench hunched over in pain, went to the dressing room, and didn't return. The injury, to his right shoulder, is not considered serious, but he'll be reevaluated tomorrow morning, and is likely to miss the rest of the tournament. We'll be posting an update tomorrow.
Before his injury, Legwand had notched a goal and an assist.
In the game, Finland broke out to an early 2-0 lead before the U.S. West squad woke up and scored four of the next five goals to take the lead, 4-3. Things were looking good -- then the roof caved in. At 19:06 of the second period, Finland scored a powerplay goal. That tied the game at 4-4. Then, in a third-period scoring rampage, Finland scored four of the next five goals to take an 8-5 win.
For the USA West, Barrett Heisten had two goals and an assist; Legwand, as mentioned, had a two-point night, as did Matt Doman (2a). Dan Carlson and Chris St. Croix had single goals, while Scott Gomez, Adam Hall, Tyler Arnason, and Nikos Tselios each helped the U.S. attack with a single assist.
Shaen Timm went all the way in the U.S. net, and struggled, allowing a soft goal to start the game, and another that broke through his pads early in the third to give Finland a two-goal lead.
Tampa Bay draft choice Eero Somervuori had two goals for Finland. Teemu Virkunen had a goal and two assists and Mikko Kainulainen had a goal and an assist. Jani Rita, Marko Kauppinen, and Marcus Kankaanpera also scored goals for Finland.
In the first game tonight, Sweden topped Switzerland, 5-2.
Tomorrow (Thurs. 8/13), USA East plays Finland, and USA West plays Sweden.
Go West, Young Man
After twice turning down offers to join the U.S. Under-18 team, St. Sebastian's School senior Pat Foley will join the Ann Arbor program after all. The move comes as a surprise, especially considering Foley's comments in this space in March.
In what the Milton, Mass. native called "the hardest decision I have ever made," he spoke of his allegiances to St. Sebastian's, saying, "I am attached to that school for life."
The abrupt change reportedly stems from the lack of big-time interest he's getting from college recruiters. A year ago at this time, Foley figured to be one of the most highly sought after players in his class. Unfortunately, many had unrealistic expectations for him. Foley is a solid two-way forward who, because his size and style of play is particularly well-suited to the junior grind, will help the club in Ann Arbor and, in the process, be challenged to lift his game up another notch. Traditionally, he's played his best games against the toughest competition. One thing's for sure: college recruiters will be watching closely.
Hilbert Paces U.S. West
U.S. Under-18 center Andy Hilbert notched a hat trick, and Wisconsin-bound defenseman David Tanabe added a pair of goals as the U.S.A. West defeated Switzerland (sans star Michel Riesen), 6-2, in action at the 1998 USA Hockey Summer Challenge in Lake Placid on Tuesday.
Notre Dame's Dan Carlson also scored for the U.S. Joe Blackburn had strong game, stopping 35 of 37 shots in the U.S. net.
On Monday, U.S.A. East tied Switzerland 2-2. Brooks Orpik and Joe Goodenow scored for the American side. Phillipe Sauve made 16 saves.
USHR hopes to have full coverage of the games for here on -- now that the press box at the Olympic Arena has a live phone line.
8/9/98 Injuries Strike U.S. Junior Hopefuls
Here's the injury report for the U.S. Junior Camp -- and the games don't even start until Monday.
Forward Tim Connolly has a pulled quadricep. He may be able to play by the middle of the week.
Forward Kevin Colley broke his hand just before camp began.
Carl Corazzini has the flu and didn't skate today.
As mentioned last week, Geoff Koch will be absent from the camp with a severely pulled. Paul Mara will be absent, too -- the Tampa Bay Lightning don't wish to share him.
Cullen Joins National Program
Joe Cullen, an 11th grader last year at Moorhead (Minn.) High School, will be spending his senior year in Ann Arbor, Michigan as a member of the U.S. National Team Development Program.
Cullen, who led all scorers at last week's Select 17 Festival in St. Cloud, had, in 20 games, an 18-18-36 scoring line for Moorhead HS last year.
Cullen is 6'1", 175 lbs., and an excellent student. He's the youngest brother of Matt Cullen (Anaheim Mighty Ducks) and Mark Cullen (Colorado College).
8/7/98 U.S. Junior Camp Opens Today
55 candidates for the U.S. National Junior Team arrive in Lake Placid today to begin preparing for the Summer Challenge, which starts Monday at the 1980 Olympic Arena. Two U.S. teams -- east and west -- will be competing, as will squads of world junior hopefuls from Sweden, Finland, and Switzerland.
Defenseman Paul Mara, who played last year for the Plymouth Whalers (OHL), won't be on hand, as the Tampa Bay Lightning signed him to a contract last month and expect he'll be playing with the big club. His spot on the roster will be filled by Jesse Cook, a 6'4", 205 lb. defenseman from the Calgary Royals (AJHL). Cook will be a freshman and Denver University this fall.
Also being replaced on the roster is University of Michigan forward Geoff Koch, who recently injured his groin in a men's senior league game. Koch's likely replacement is Liam McCarthy of Harvard University. McCarthy, nominally a defenseman, will be skating up front at Lake Placid.
News and Notes
5'4" forward Chris Fournier of the Lincoln Stars (USHL) reportedly will be attending Cranbrook's training camp. Cranbrook -- it's in British Columbia, in case you were wondering -- is the former Edmonton Ice franchise in the WHL...Look for Archbishop Williams defenseman Kevin Truelson to sign with UNH any day now...Florida forward Noah Babin, one of the top '84's in the country, and a player we recently wrote about in these pages, is moving to Michigan to play in the Compuware organization.. James LaLiberty, who played for the National Team Development Program last year, will be attending Colby College starting in January...His teammate of last year, J.R. Zavisza, will be suiting up for the New England Coyotes. Also joining the Coyotes this fall are a pair of young defensemen: 6'2" Michael Komisarek, who played last year for the Suffolk P.A.L. Midgets, and made a strong showing at last month's Select 16 Festival; and Eric Lundberg, a big D who played last year with the Connecticut Clippers. Lundberg is injured right now, otherwise he'd likely be New England's top D at the Select 15 Festival, currently going on in Ann Arbor, Michigan... Michael Woodford has decided to transfer from Lawrence Academy to Cushing... Vladimir Rejman of the Chicago Young Americans will suit up for the Thunder Bay Flyers in the fall.
New Coaches for Under-19 Team
Ken Martel, who spent last season as an assistant under Frank Serratore at Air Force, has accepted a coaching position with the National Program in Ann Arbor. Before going out to Air Force, Martel, a former Lake Superior State defenseman who grew up in Los Angeles, was an assistant at Michigan Tech under head coach Bob Mancini. Martel will be coaching the Blue Team (that's the younger of the two teams -- the one that plays the North American Hockey League schedule).
Alex Roberts, who was a graduate assistant last year, is being promoted to coach of the Red Team (that's the older of the two teams -- the one that plays in the USHL).
Roberts, a defenseman, was captain of the 1989-90 Michigan Wolverines.
There are two new grad assistants coming on board this year.
One is John Hynes, who played at Tollgate HS in Rhode Island, and won an NCAA championship with Boston University in 1995 before a neck injury curtailed his college career. Hynes was a volunteer assistant on Jack Parker's staff last season.
The other is Brian Hunter, who played high school hockey in Minneapolis and college hockey at Michigan Tech. Hunter, like Hynes, missed his last year of college eligibility, '96-97, with an injury (shoulder). Hunter made the best of the year, working as an undergraduate assistant coach. He's been in Minneapolis for the past year, working in sales.
UMass-Amherst assistant coach Scott MacPherson is leaving Amherst to take a job as an assistant coach with the Cincinnati Cyclones of the IHL. MacPherson, who'll work under head coach Ron Smith, reports that he'll also do some scouting for the Washington Capitals and serve as director of player personnel for the Dayton Bombers (ECHL).
With Bob Deraney gone and MacPherson leaving, who'll be helping Joe Mallen at UMass this season? The one name we've heard most mentioned is that of Bill Gilligan. The brother of Vermont head coach Mike Gilligan has been a long-time head coach in Switzerland. He was behind the bench when Switzerland surprised the hockey world by winning the bronze medal at last winter's World Junior Championships.
U.S. Under-19 Team Picks Goalies
After a superb performance in New York's overtime upset of heavily favored Minnkota in the Select-17 championship game, Apple Core goaltender Chris Gartman has accepted an invitation to join the U.S. Under-19 team. Gartman, an '81, and Montana native Nick Pannoni, an '82, will be the two new goalies in Ann Arbor next season, joining Rick DiPietro and Rob Bonk..
Moorhead (Minn.) HS forward Joe Cullen and Taft defenseman Evan Nielsen -- he's from Evanston, Ill. -- have also been offered spots with the program, but have yet to make a decision either way. Both are '81's who'll be entering the 12th grade.
Final Ontario Under-17 List
The following 37 players advance from the Ontario-17 camp, and will be followed up on.
Serino Making Waves
Thayer Academy center Luke Smith has committed to Merrimack College. Smith is the first recruit for new Merrimack coach Chris Serino.
The Brothers McRae
Mark and Matt McRae, twins who played for the Brampton Capitals last season, are in the process of deciding between college or the OHL.
The twins boast ninety-two percent averages and 1300 SATs and attend St. Michael's College in Toronto, one of Canada's finest college prepatory schools. Their father John is an educator, having recently retired from his position as a psychology professor at the University of Toronto. With education playing such a major role in the family, the twins are naturally inclined to play hockey for an American college.
With this in mind, the Kitchener Rangers gambled when they selected Mark and Matt 145th and 146th respectively in June's OHL Draft. Kitchener, considered one of the richest clubs in the league, would have to offer a substantial education package to get Mark, a right shot defenseman rated 1-7th by OHL central scouting, and Matt, a right shot center rated 2-22nd. Currently, the family is seeking a full education package including money for graduate school for both boys.
In the meantime, numerous college coaches have visited the McRae's Toronto flat. Cornell, Harvard, New Hampshire, Ohio State, Princeton, and Yale among others have made in-home visits. We heard a rumor last week that the twins had committed Harvard, but this is not true.
"People have been saying that since January. The boys are interested in medicine and [Harvard] is close to Peter (referring to his son who will be a freshman at Sacred Heart in September), so it makes sense, but we have not made a decision," explained John McRae.
One school the family hasn't heard from yet is Boston University. "We are going to be [in Boston] soon, but we aren't going to visit [BU] if they are not interested."
Wherever the twins play next year, they will go together. "People have been trying to split them up forever. They will go together," the father explained.
Sleeping in Seattle
It's looking like Barrett Heisten will join the WHL's Seattle Thunderbird's rather than attend the University of Maine, just as predicted in this spot in the spring. His mother wants him to go to college, but Barrett appears set on playing major junior. We'll have more on this story soon.
Copyright © 1998 U.S. Hockey Report
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