Established 1996 -- Celebrating Our 25th Year



NAHL Tenders

Following is the latest list of NAHL singed tenders. Note that teams are allowed to trade tenders, hence the large number of Chicago tenders. 

Capital Center Pride:
Eric Ehn, F, Metro Jets Jr. B (CSHL), 1/29/84
Graham Murphy, D, St. Louis Blues Jr. B (CSHL), 2/11/83
Anthony Ciraulo, F, Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA, 6/7/85
Sean O'Connell, D, Metro Jets Jr. B (CSHL), 9/13/82
Chicago Freeze:
Andrew Wiesner, F, Chicago Chill Midget AAA, 9/27/83
Patrick Lee, F, Team Illinois Midget AAA, 4/23/84
Justin Gutwald, D, Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA, 9/6/83
Derek Patrosso, F, Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA, 10/23/84
Ryan Kidd, D, Compuware Midget AAA, 11/4/83
Matt McIlvane, F, Team Illinois Midget AAA, 11/2/85
Michael DeGeorge, G, Chicago Chill Midget AAA, 4/20/84
Cleveland Barons:
Brett John, F, Detroit Catholic Central HS, 6/11/83
PJ Nelson, F, Shattuck-St.Mary's Prep, 5/16/84  
B. Tyler Moyer, F, Columbus Crush Midget AAA, 8/30/84
Compuware Ambassadors:
Matt Shouneyia, F, Compuware Midget AAA, 11/3/85
Lars Helminen, D, Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA, 1/1/85
Stewart Carlin, D, Compuware Midget AAA, 7/12/85
Danville Wings:
Kevin Sheehan, F, Chicago Chill Midget AAA, 1/9/84
Matthew Woodard, D, St. Louis Park (Minn.) HS, 5/12/85
William Devoney, D, Chicago Chill Midget AAA, 7/17/84
Pittsburgh Forge:
Eric Trax, D, Pittsburgh Hornets Midget AAA, 9/27/83
Ben Camper, F, Cleveland Barons Midget AAA, 9/30/84
Randy Bauer, D, Pittsburgh Hornets Midget AAA, 8/1/83
John Dingle, F, Team Ohio Midget AAA, 5/24/84
St. Louis Sting >>Springfield Spirit:
Soo Indians:
Joseph Beaudry, F, Marquette Electricians Midget AAA, 2/22/84
Springfield Jr. Blues:
Steven Kinnie, F, Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA, 10/6/84
Dennis Assenmacher, F, Little Caesar's Midget AAA, 11/19/83
Aaron Anderson, Soo Indians Midget AAA, 2/1/84
Derek Pallardy, F, St. Louis Jr. Sting Midget AAA, 7/16/83
Matthew Montes, D, Chicago Flames Midget AAA, 7/1/83
Texas Tornado:
Mike Salens, F, Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA, 11/29/84


BU Lands Top Boston-area Recruit for '03

5'11", 170 lb. LW Kenny Roche, a junior at the St. Sebastian's School, has committed to Boston University and will arrive at Babcock St. in the fall of '03.

Roche, a South Boston native, was a USHR First-team New England Prep All-Star this season -- the only 11th grader selected. He and senior linemate Mike Morris, who's heading to Northeastern, were an unstoppable combination as St. Sebastian's won its second straight prep school title. 

Roche, a 1/2/84 birthdate, notched 28 goals and 31 assists in 31 games. He's quick, has excellent hands, and is a good get for the Terriers. Other schools in the hunt for Roche were Northeastern, UMass-Lowell, Providence, and Boston College. 

-- Out in the USHL, 5'11", 180 lb. RW Ted O'Leary, the third-leading scorer on the Cedar Rapids Roughriders, has committed to the University of Denver. That will be for this fall.

O'Leary, who played for the Vail Midgets before going to Cedar Rapids a couple of years ago, has a 19-19-38 line in 54 games. Nine of those goals came on the powerplay.


USHL Tenders

Here is the latest list of USHL Signed Tenders. The number each team has remaining is shown in parentheses. 

Cedar Rapids (1):
Tyler Howells, F, Eden Prairie, Minn.(Holy Angels) 10/20/83
Wesley Russell, G, Springfield, Ill. (Chicago Flames) 1/7/85
Derek Peltier, D, Plymouth, Minn. (Armstrong HS) 3/14/85
Zachary Pearson, White Lake, Mich. (Tri Wings) 2/27/84
Chicago (3):
Jeff Dunne, D, Grover, Mo. (HoneyBaked Midget) 6/23/85
Des Moines (3):
Bob Kenworthy, D, Brookhaven, PA (Philly Jr. Flyers) 4/4/84
Tom Kolar, F, Duluth, MN (East HS) 7/22/83
Green Bay (3):
Ryan Carter, F, White Bear Lake, MN (White Bear Lake HS) 8/3/83
Kyle Klubertanz, D, Sun Prairie, WI (Chicago Chill) 9/23/85
Lincoln (2):
Dave Carlisle, D, Wyoming, MN (Shattuck) 6/25/84
David Backes, F, Blaine, Minn. (Spring Lake Park HS) 5/11/84
Christopher Porter, F, Sioux City, Iowa (Shattuck) 5/29/84
Gino Guyer, F, Coleraine, Minn. (Greenway HS) 10/14/83
Omaha (4):
Mike Howe, F, St. Cloud, Minn. (Apollo HS) 9/5/84
Rochester (4):
Ricky Hopkins, F, Blooomington, Minn. (Benilde-St.Margaret's) 12/24/83
Sioux City (0):
Brian Bales, F, Anchorage, AK (Alaska All-Star Midget AAA) 1/3/85
Peter Cartwright, F, Anchorage, AK (Alaska All-Stars) 7/16/84
Adam Fincik, F, Donora, PA (Pittsburgh Hornets) 1/18/84
Mike Curry, F, Eagle River, AK (Alaska Blue Devils) 9/20/84
Matt Hartmann, F, St. Cloud, Minn. (Apollo HS) 8/4/84
Sioux Falls (3):
Anthony Cosmano, F, Wheaton, Ill. (Chicago Chill Midget AAA) 1/13/85
Marc Marcotte, D, L'Anse, MI (Marquette Electricians Midget AAA), 12/4/84
Andy Sertich, F, Coleraine, Minn. (Greenway HS) 5/6/83
Topeka (2):
Tony Gliniany, D, Brooklyn Park, Minn. (Osseo HS) 8/18/83
Teddy Bencarz, D, Chino Hills, CA (LA Junior Kings) 5/11/84
Brent Cummings, D, Austin, Minn. (Austin HS) 4/15/83
Tri-City (2):
Brian Kilburg, D, Mendota Heights, Minn. (Cretin-Derhan Hall HS) 5/10/84
Scott Parse, F, Portage, Mich. (Soo Midget AAA) 9/5/84
Dan Kronick, F, Inver Grove Heights, Minn. (Holy Angels) 11/16/84
Tulsa (2):
Rob Dubel, D, Otsego, Minn. (Maple Grove HS) 8/5/83
Sean Muncy, F, Chesterfield, MO (St. Louis Blues Midget AAA) 1/11/85
Waterloo (3):
Joseph Pavelski, F, Plover, Wisc. (Team Wisconsin)  7/11/84

Notes: Each USHL team is allowed to sign five tenders, unless they trade one to another team in the league. Four are normal tenders, meaning said player is included on his team's protected list for next season. The fifth tender on each team is a Dual Tender, with the further designation of either Supplemental or National -- not that there's much difference between the two. For the record, Kolar (Des Moines), Guyer (Lincoln), Howe (Omaha), Hopkins (Rochester), Hartmann (Sioux City), Sertich (Sioux Falls), and Kronick (Tri-City) are all Minnesota high school players allowed to play before and/or after the current high school season. Muncy (Tulsa) is a National tender. We're not sure if Muncy, as a national tender, is able to play after his season ends. We're assuming that National tenders are used in lieu of signing a supplemental tender, and are, in essence, the same as normal tenders. Let us know if we're wrong on that. You have to be a lawyer to figure some of this stuff out.  

The draft this year will be in mid-May.


The Commitments 

-- Deerfield Academy 5'9", 175 lb. junior center Dan Shribman, his team's second-leading scorer this winter with a 12-26-39 line in 27 games, will be going to Dartmouth in the fall of 2003. Shribman, a 2/21/84 birthdate from Swampscott, Mass. is a hard worker who sees the ice well and can make plays at a high tempo. Shribman chose Dartmouth over Harvard and Yale. 

-- 5'11", 195 lb RW Matt Anderson, the third leading scorer on the New England Coyotes -- after Torry Gajda and Mark McCutcheon -- will be playing for Toot Cahoon at UMass in the fall. Anderson, a 10/31/82 birthday, a Halloween baby, is from East Islip, NY and in 39 games this season, posted a 20-29-49 line for the Coyotes. 

-- Also going to UMass is big Peter Alden, a 6'2", 220 lb. LW, played with the Connecticut Clippers and Springfield (NAHL) before coming to the Capital District Selects (EJHL) this season. A 1/14/82 birthdate, Alden was the third leading scorer for Jim Salfi's team. He has decent speed for a big guy, and a good wrist shot with a quick release. 

Notes: Speaking of Cap District, 6'0", 200 lb. RD J.R. Bria, a PG out of Choate and a strong student, will almost certainly be snapped up by a Div. I school shortly. Bria is an extremely offensive defenseman who averaged nearly a point a game in league play. He's from Monroe, Conn. and is a 10/30/82 birthdate, so he also has a year of junior eligibility remaining. Maine, BU, Union, Colgate (and probably others) are among the interested schools... The EJHL handed out the hardware on Tuesday night. The coach of the year -- no surprise here -- was Sean Tremblay, who led the New Hampshire Jr. Monarch's to a 35-2-1 record (57-6-3 overall) and the league championship. The league MVP - also no surprise -- was Monarchs goaltender Joe Pearce (1.82, .938). Offensive MVP -- again, no surprise -- was John LaLiberte who averaged 2.37 ppg (39-44-83 in 35 games). Defensive MVP -- also a slam dunk -- was 6'1" Apple Core LD Jekabs Redlihs. A Latvian who played on his country's National Jr. team in December, Redlihs just needs to pass his SATs and TOEFL to get into college. If he does pass them, look for him at Boston University in the fall. Rookie of the Year was Apple Core's Brad Roberts, who is going to West Point in the fall. Roberts is a PG out of Canterbury. He played the full year as a 19-year-old. We don't want to rain on his parade, but he's only a rookie in the technical sense of the word. The EJHL had more quality young players this than any year we can remember. Better choices for Rookie of the Year would have been guys like 6'1" Walpole Jr. Stars LW Jordan LaVallee, an '86 who has been invited to the U.S. NTDP; 6'2" Valley Jr. Warriors RD Joey Ryan, a late '87; and 6'1" Monarchs RD Andrew Thomas, a late '85. 


Mantha New NTDP Chief

The new guy in charge in Ann Arbor will be... Moe Mantha. 

Mantha, now in his second season coaching the NTDP's Under-17 team, will be taking over for current U.S. National Development Coach Mike Eaves at the end of this season. Eaves, as you likely know, was chosen as the University of Wisconsin's new head coach last week.

Mantha was hired by Eaves in the spring of 2000, shortly after the latter was hired to take over the program in the wake of the firing of Jeff Jackson and Bob Mancini. 

Mantha, 41, and the son of a minor pro player, was born in Lakewood, Ohio in 1961. When he was 17, he joined the Toronto Marlboros (OHA), and in 1980 was a second round pick of the NHL's Winnipeg Jets. Mantha, then 19, stuck with the big club immediately. A 6'2", 210 lb. RD, Mantha also played for Pittsburgh, Edmonton, Minnesota, and Philadelphia. He retired as a player in 1992, shortly after playing for the U.S. in the Olympic games in Albertville, France. 

Before coming to the National Program, Mantha was head coach of the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks (AHL) for four seasons. 

With Mantha moving up to take over the Under-18 team, there's a push on by USA Hockey to get Mark Johnson to take over the Under-17 Team. As a matter of fact, Johnson is in Ann Arbor today meeting with Eaves. 

Johnson, 44, is a former Wisconsin All-American -- and teammate of Eaves -- who went on to capture the gold at Lake Placid in 1980 before embarking on an 11-year NHL career. A native of Madison, Johnson has spent the last six years as an assistant to Jeff Sauer at Wisconsin. Sauer, of course, took over at the school for Johnson's father 20 years ago. 


Four for the National Program

So far, four players have committed to the U.S. National Team Development Program for next year. They are:

-- 6'2", 180 lb. LD A.J. Thelen of Savage, Minn. and the Shattuck-St. Mary's Midget AA squad. Thelen is a 3/11/86 birthdate.

-- 5'11", 175 lb. RD Nate Hagemo of  Edina, Minn. and Holy Angels, which won the Minnesota High School Tournament two weeks ago. Hagemo is a 10/6/86 birthdate.

-- 6'1", 170 lb. RW Kevin Swallow of Stanwood, Michigan and the Compuware Midget AAA program. Swallow is a 5/7/86 birthdate.

-- 5'8", 165 lb. LC Bryan Lerg of Livonia, Mich. and the HoneyBaked Midgets. Lerg is a 1/20/86 birthdate.

Thelen is a big, bruising defenseman with some offensive upside. Hagemo, who's also played forward, is an offensive defenseman. Good hands, stick, skating ability and head for the game. Swallow is a power forward type who can score. Needs work on his skating. Lerg, a natural center, is pure skill and shiftiness. 

Some of the 39 players in the camp -- all of whom are '86s -- have been contacted by the coaching staff; there are players other than the above four who have been invited to join the program. Other players, however, including some who will get invitations, have yet to be contacted. It's an ongoing process. Look for some more commitments by the end of the week.  

As an added note, of the 39 players in camp, four came from junior programs, 22 came from full-season bantam and midget programs, six came from New England prep schools, and six came from Minnesota high schools.

The feeling at the camp was that the forwards were more of a mixed bag than last year's class (the current Under-17 squad, which lacks size but has skill in abundance). This year's group has some big kids who, if they develop, could make this class look stronger down the line than it does now.  

On defense, there is no Ryan Suter among the bunch. There are some sure bets, though, and some depth. 

There was no clear-cut #1 goalie, so that decision may be put off for awhile. 


Poor Timing! 

Sure, the rumors had morped into fact by the time the NCAA Western Regionals got under way Friday night in Ann Arbor. Even so, we can't quite fathom why Michigan State Athletics Director Dr. Clarence Underwood felt it necessary earlier this evening to announce a press conference for tomorrow (Mon. 3/25, noon) to announce the hiring of Rick Comley as the Spartans' first new hockey coach since Ron Mason took over for Amo Bessone 23 years ago. 

Efforts to reach Dr. Underwood were unsuccessful, so we can't really tell you why the Spartans' AD decided against waiting until, say, mid-week, thus giving the kids at UNH, Maine, Michigan, and Minnesota a few days to enjoy college hockey's spotlight without having to cede it to a 55-year-old grownup. 

Anyway, Comley, who played for Mason at Lake Superior State ('68-'72) when that school was an NAIA powerhouse, and served as captain and MVP his senior year, began coaching there under Mason right after being graduated. When Mason left for Bowling Green in 1973, he handed the reins to Comley. Now, 29 years later, Mason is handing the reins to Comley again. 

After three years as head coach at Lake State, Comley moved on to Northern Michigan in 1976 and established the school's Div. I program. Today, he has 597 wins, and is seventh on the all-time NCAA list. He also has an NCAA ring, won when the Wildcats came from behind to beat Boston University 8-7 in triple OT on March 30, 1991 in St. Paul, Minn. That team featured stars like senior defenseman Brad Werenka, junior centerman Scott Beattie, and senior goaltender Bill Pye. The hero in OT? Senior forward Darryl Plandowski, who, after 81:57 of hockey (overtimes were 10 minutes then) beat BU's Scott Cashman off a pass from Marc Beaufait. 

Dave Shyiak, a native of Brandon, Manitoba, was a senior forward and assistant captain on that team. Since 1995, the 35-year-old Shyiak has been an assistant under Comley, serving as recruiting coordinator for the past six years. 

Right now, Shyiak appears to be the leading candidate to take over the program, but, as we know, things can change quickly in this business.


USHR Prep Player of the Year: Mike Morris

For a kid who's heading to a Hockey East school -- Northeastern -- and likely to be drafted this June, Mike Morris is, at 6'0", 180 lbs, not particularly big. On top of that, he lacks breakaway speed. 

Those are the negatives.

The positives? 

Absolutely everything else. 

Morris, a right wing and co-captain of the Arrows, played in 31 games, posted a 29-29-58 line and was a +49 as he helped lead St. Sebastian's to its second straight New England Prep title. 

If you like watching a player who combines excellent tools with superb hockey sense and a great work ethic, Morris is your guy. First off, he's superb defensively. Take that -- and combine it with the fact that he has the skills to make the plays he sees in his head result in the puck winding up in the other team's net -- and you have, as Northeastern assistant coach Jamie Rice put it, "a Cadillac." Simply put, there aren't many players of Morris' age who understand and execute the way he does. That's what puts him among the elite. 

Steve Dagdigian, Morris' coach, describes him as "probably the most complete player that we have coached at St. Seb's." 

Dagdigian goes on to say, "He could be the best player on the ice without scoring a point. He takes care of all the details. His game can be incredibly subtle, but if you watch him carefully, the little things that he does shift to shift are incredible."

Morris, a native of Braintree, is a 7/14/83 birthdate and eligible for this June's NHL draft without opting in. 


USHR Coach of the Year: Dan Donato

In college, Dan Donato pulled off a rare double, playing hockey at Boston University (and reaching the NCAAs every year), and then jumping into a baseball uniform. After graduation in 1994, the third baseman played pro ball, mostly in the New York Yankees organization, but never reached the show. A couple of years back, Donato, the brother of LA Kings forward Ted Donato, retired from baseball and arrived at Salisbury.

This year, in his first season as head coach, he led Salisbury hockey to an 18-5-2 record and a berth in the prep quarterfinals, where they lost to Taft. The hallmark of Donato's squad was its work ethic. If you played them, you knew you were in for a game.

Donato, who is young and energetic, has all the right Boston connections from his days at BU, so you're going to see Salisbury attracting more and more top players. In other words, the future looks very good at Salisbury.  

*** While we're on the subject of head coaches, we want to acknowledge the job of two others. 

St. Seb's head coach Steve Dagdigian led his charges to a second straight prep title. Repeating is hard in any sport and no Div. I prep hockey team has pulled it off since Jeremy Roenick was lighting it up for Thayer in the late '80s. The secret to the success of St. Sebastian's season was simply the fact that the Arrows consistently moved the puck better than any of their opponents. While some prep squads struggle to string together two passes, with St. Seb's there would be numerous times in a game in which you'd see every single skater on the ice touch the puck in the process of maneuvering into position for the high-quality shot. That's skill combined with discipline. The result is a pleasure to see. 

When we watched Taft early in December, we didn't think Mike Maher's squad had much of a chance of reaching the prep quarterfinals, much less the prep title game. We saw a huge chasm where Chris Collins, Ryan Shannon, and Christian Jensen used to be and didn't see one strong line -- either then or later -- to replace them. But Taft played to their strength, utilizing strong team defense, an excellent young goalie, and a group of forwards who were just good enough. With that, they piled up wins. The boost that sent them deep into the playoffs probably came on Feb. 13 when Taft, utilizing 30-second shifts, outhustled and  outplayed Deerfield, emerging with a 2-0 win.  


USHR Prep All-Star Teams

First All-Star Team:
G -- Jeff Pietrasiak, Sr., Berkshire
D -- Marvin Degon, Sr, Cushing
D -- Jaime Sifers, Sr, Taft
F -- Mike Morris, Sr., St.Sebastian's
F -- Kenny Roche, Jr., St. Sebastian's
F -- Joe Zappala, Sr., Deerfield
Second All-Star Team:
G -- Gabe Winer, Sr., Gov. Dummer
D -- Ben Lovejoy, Jr., Deerfield
D -- Chris Murray, Jr., Lawrence
F -- Nate Jackson, Sr, Exeter
F -- Brian Swiniarski, Sr., Tabor
F -- Joe Rooney, Soph., St. Sebastian's
Top Rookies*:
1. Chad Kolarik, Fr. F, Deerfield
2T. Chris Bourque, Fr. F, Cushing
2T. Matt Lashoff, Soph. D, Avon 

* Limited to players born in '86 or after 


Great 8 Gets Underway

The Great 8 Tournament, featuring 128 of the top seniors in Minnesota high school hockey, gets underway this evening at Wakota Arena in South St. Paul, Minn.

University of Minnesota recruit Gino Guyer (Greenway) and Mankato State recruit David Backes (Spring Lake Park) won't be there, as they're finishing up the season with the Lincoln Stars (USHL). However, many others will. 

There will be four games tonight, starting at 6 pm; and four tomorrow. Playoffs are on Sunday, beginning at 9 am. 

2002 Great 8 Rosters


Eaves Named New Head Coach at Wisconsin

At a 3 pm CST news conference today, Wisconsin AD Pat Richter named former Badger star Mike Eaves as the successor to Jeff Sauer

For the past two seasons, Eaves has served as the U.S. National Development Coach and head coach of the U.S. Under-18 Team. He will remain with the National Program through the IIHF World Under-18 Championship, which will be held in Slovakia from April 12-22.

Eaves, 45, and the son of a hockey coach, was born in Denver, and by his teenage years was living in Ontario, where his father was head coach at the University of Windsor. When Eaves was 17, he averaged nearly two points a game for the Nepean Raiders (OJHL). The next fall, 1974, he arrived in Madison, where he'd play four years for Bob Johnson, win an NCAA title (1977) and graduate in 1978 as the school's all-time leading scorer with 267 points. While at Wisconsin, Eaves met his future wife, Beth, a native of Madison. The couple has raised a pair of hockey-playing boys. One's name Ben; the other, Patrick. You may have heard of them.

After his college career, Eaves, a 5'10", 180 lb. RC, played a few games with the Minnesota North Stars in 1978-79, then stuck with them the following season. In 1983, Eaves was traded to the Calgary Flames, where he was reunited with Badger Bob. However, injury forced him to retire after the '85-86 season, a season in which he chipped in as an assistant to Johnson while on the disabled list.

The next season, he began his coaching career in earnest, first as a head coach at Wisconsin-Eau Claire, then as an assistant at St. Cloud State. Starting in 1988, the spent five years in the Philadelphia Flyers organization, with stints as an assistant with the big club as well as head coach of the Hershey Bears (AHL). From there, he coached at Shattuck-St. Mary's for two years. In 1996-97, he coached IFK Helsinki of the Finnish Elite League. At the start of the 1997 season, he joined the Pittsburgh Penguins as an assistant on Kevin Constantine's staff, and was there nearly three years.

In the spring of 2000, Eaves was tabbed to take over the National Program after Jeff Jackson was fired. 

Eaves turned out to be an excellent hire for the National Program. Those who've closely followed the teams he's coached have come away deeply impressed. Eaves demands a lot of his players, and of himself. He's energetic, open-minded, easily approachable, and very much a questing type -- he's always thinking, looking for better ways to do things. A real plus for the Badgers is the fact that, during his two years in Ann Arbor, he's come to have a deep -- and first hand -- understanding of the U.S. talent base.

Another benefit to hiring Eaves is that it pretty much makes top prospect Ryan Suter, a 6'1" blue-chip LD currently playing in the National Program, a slam-dunk for the Badgers. Suter, who's currently in the 11th grade, is being projected as a first-round pick in the 2003 NHL draft. Suter, from Madison, is the son of former Badger -- and Eaves' teammate -- Bob Suter

In February, the elder Suter was reported as saying that his son was planning on attending Wisconsin as long as the administration "didn't take a step backwards" in the hiring of a new hockey coach. 

Well, they didn't. As a matter of fact, they took a big step forward.


Hockey Night Getting Underway 

Hockey Night in Boston gets underway with a pair of practice games tonight, and another late tomorrow afternoon. The actual games get underway at 4:00 pm Thursday and run through Sunday. 

A good number of star players won't be in attendance due to either vacations, injuries, or baseball and lacrosse trips. The full list is on the schedule/rosters page. Please follow the link below.  

Between key players not being here and the fact that on Sat.and Sun. HNIB will be going head-to-head with the NCAA East Regionals in Worcester is expected to take some of the shine off the tournament. 

HNIB: Schedule, Rosters, etc. 


BC High Super 8 Champs

Boston, Mass. -- Junior goaltender Travis Luongo kicked out 24 shots as BC High blanked defending state champion Catholic Memorial, 2-0, in the Mass. Super 8 title game last night at the FleetCenter. 

A powerplay goal in the first period by sophomore Steve Smolinsky gave BC High a 1-0 lead. 

The score was still 1-0 when the teams came out for the third period. After sleepwalking through the first two periods, CM, in the final frame, came to life -- but not enough to get the equalizer and make a game of it. 

At 9:13, BC High senior Jordan Virtue got the insurance goal, banging the rebound of his own shot past CM goaltender Ed Nehiley after a pass from sophomore Matt Greene. 

Greene and Luongo were standouts for BC High. 

The win was BC High's first Super 8 win since 1996. They have met CM four times in the final, including last season, a game the Eagles lost 1-0 in OT.

This season, BC High struggled early, but then got hot, finishing the season with 13 straight wins

BC High met CM twice during the regular season. The Eagles lost the first matchup, on Jan. 14. That was BC High's last loss of the season. Since then they have beaten CM three straight times. On Feb. 9, they tagged CM with a 5-2 loss. In the playoffs, they easily handled the Knights on Sunday March 10, knocking the Knights into the loser's bracket. And last night made three. 

Div. I 

-- An overtime goal by Waltham HS junior forward Mike Aiello at 1:25 of OT gave his team a 3-2 win over Springfield Cathedral and the Mass. Div. I state final.

It was Aiello's second goal of the game. 

Waltham held an early 2-0 lead midway through this game, but Springfield Cathedral battled  back, tying it up 20 seconds into the third on a nice goal by sophomore P.J. Fenton (son of Paul Fenton, former BU star and NHLer), who snapped off a beauty from the top of the faceoff circle, sending the game into overtime. 


Mount Makes it 25 in a Row

Providence, RI -- Led by Corey Goglia (2G,3A) and Matt Roy (1G,3A), Mount St. Charles won its 25th straight Rhode Island high school hockey championship with a 6-2 victory over La Salle last night at Providence College’s Schneider Arena.

Mount, which beat La Salle 6-1 on Friday night, swept the best-of-three title series. Goglia (3G,1A) and Roy (3A) were also the scoring stars in Game 1.

Last night, La Salle jumped out to a 1-0 lead on a goal by Craig Houle at 7:14 of the first period.

Mount tied it on a powerplay goal by Goglia at 44 seconds of the second.

Two minutes later, La Salle jumped ahead on a highlight film goal by James Guay, the Rams best player in both games. The junior center carried down the left-wing boards, squeezed past a Mount defenseman, cut into the slot, danced around another defender and slipped a shot past Mount’s Ryan Hatch (23 saves).

That was as good as it got for La Salle, which couldn’t match Mount’s skill, depth and poise.

At 5:02, Goglia, a junior, tapped a rebound past Ed Mega (34 saves) to tie it. Then goals by Mike Kasberg and Mike Mallette 1:33 apart gave Mount a 4-2 lead after two.

Early in the third, Bowdoin-bound Roy, who edged Goglia by a point in the Championship Division scoring race, buried a breakaway after a Goglia feed.

Mallette added his second of the night with 31 seconds left.

The win leaves Bill Belisle with a record of 707-92 in 27 years at the Mount.


Taft Shocker

Taft junior goaltender Travis Russell, who backstopped his team to the prep finals just two weeks ago, is leaving Taft to get his degree from Essex Junction (Vt.) HS this spring.

Why? It's simple: the University of Vermont wants him to come on board this fall. 

Taft wouldn't allow Russell, who came to the school as a repeat junior in the fall, to accelerate. Going back to high school will allow him to graduate with his normal class. 

Our feeling here -- and this is only a slight digression -- is that, in most cases, athletes should not repeat grades when they move from public to private school. It may be in the best interest of the prep school, as they get the player longer, but it can hurt the player by limiting options. The Russell case is unusual. In a more typical case, staying back hurts a player because it takes away a whole year that he could be playing Jr. A after prep. Remember, it's a relatively small group of players -- and a tiny group of goalies -- who can make the jump from prep to Div. I college hockey. There's another group of players with Div. I potential -- but they need grooming in juniors first. Holding off that opportunity for a year after their natural graduation date slows the development of those players, and is especially damaging to goalies because college recruiters simply prefer their netminders to be kids with Jr. A experience under his belt. Of course, sometimes there are academic issues involved that may require a kid to stay back, but these are rarer than you might imagine. Staying back has gotten out of control.  

That's our two cents worth.

Now, back to Russell and the University of Vermont. The Cats, who finished the season an abysmal 2-26-2, need serious help in net (and on D, and up front). Junior Shawn Conschafter (3.89, .892) played in 27 games, while freshman Scott Sortal got in two games. 

In addition to Russell, whose family holds season tickets at the Gut, Vermont has Deerfield's Matt Hanson coming in next season. You can be sure that Hanson, who'll be twenty when he graduates from Deerfield this spring, is not thrilled by this latest development. Hardly a vote of confidence for the Big Green netminder.   

By the way, 18-year Vermont head coach Mike Gilligan was blasted in a front-page article in the Burlington Free-Press last Sunday, but those in the know around the program say that his job is safe -- at least for another year. A new university president comes on board July 1, which could effect things after that.  


Big D-Man for the Tigers

6'3", 210 lb. RD Brett Westgarth of the Chatham Maroons (WOJHL) will be going to Princeton in the fall. 

Westgarth, a 2/4/82 birthdate, is a native of Amherstburg, Ontario. He's a big, rugged stay-at-home D with smarts and steadiness.  

West Point has also received a commitment from a big, stay-at-home D in 6'2", 195 lb. Mike Watson of  Cushing Academy, who will play junior hockey next year and arrive at Army in the fall of 2003. Army is loading up on size on the blue line, having already received commitments for next season from 6'4" Nick Hamm of Lansing (NAHL), and Eric Lawler of Kanata (COJHL), who's also 6'4". 

Former Northfield-Mt.Hermon defenseman Ryan Foster, who has spent the season with the Chicago Freeze (NAHL), has a accepted an invitation to walk-on at Boston College. 

Foster, a native of Lynn, Mass., has been converted to forward this season, so he'll offer the Eagles some versatility. In 33 games, he has a 5-7-12 line. 

Foster, who's 6'0", 185 lbs., is a 7/20/81 birthdate. He's a right shot. 

Speaking of BC, sophomore defenseman J.D. Forrest, who had his lower forearm/wrist sliced by one of Sean Collins' skates in BC's last regular-season game on March 3, had surgery -- three tendons were sewn back together -- to correct nerve damage three days later. It was a success, and Forrest is expected to regain his full range of movement by the end of June. The damage was to his top (right) hand. The only long-term consequence of his injury is that he may not have feeling in the very tips of a couple of fingers. That just means he can amuse his friends by sticking pins in his fingers. 

Forrest was elected an assistant captain for next year, as was Anthony D'Arpino. Ben Eaves was elected captain.


NTDP Camp Final Rosters Set

On Saturday, the 2002-03 National Team Development Program hopefuls will arrive in Ann Arbor, Mich. for the annual four-day invitation-only evaluation camp.

There will be 38 players, all '86s, in camp. They represent 10 states: Michigan (10), Minnesota (7), Massachusetts (6), New York (6), Ohio (3), Wisconsin (2), Pennsylvania (2), Illinois (1), Colorado (1), and Alaska (1). Unlike in past years, there are no players from the Sun Belt.

For all except one player, it will be their first camp. The exception is forward Robbie Schremp, who attended last year as an underager. Schremp was asked to join the team at the time, but chose to stay home and play another year with the Syracuse Jr. Crunch (OPJHL). Schremp is projected to go #1 or #2 in the spring OHL draft. 

Here's the final roster, in printable form:  

2002 NTDP Evaluation Camp

Once again, the driving force behind the camp is scouting coordinator Ken Martel, who spent countless days on the road last winter, crisscrossing the country, watching players over and over, following leads, turning over rocks, and speaking on a virtual daily basis with his scouting staff. 

There is no one with a better handle on the '85/'86 age group in this country, as any Div. I coach will tell you. 

Martel, a defenseman on Lake Superior State's 1988 NCAA championship team who went on to become a Div. I assistant, is now in his fourth year with the program and his second as scouting coordinator, a position created when Mike Eaves took over in Ann Arbor in the spring of 2000. 


This year, for the first time, the NTDP Evaluation Camp will not be open to the public. It will be totally closed to all except immediate family and NTDP staff. There will be black paper covering the windows, and passes will be checked at the door. 

This is by no means a popular decision with everyone -- a small number of agents, as well as OHL and Jr. A scouts, have squawked. 

However, the reason behind the decision is laudable. The players on the ice are all either 15 or 16 -- they're kids. They have enough pressure in simply focusing on the task at hand without having to face additional distractions. 

And, last year, there were distractions aplenty, as the stands were jammed with agents and major junior scouts, a number of them actively courting players and their parents -- at an event that was on the NTDP's dime. 

Hence the new policy.


Kronick Tops in Tournament

The Minnesota State High School Tournament honchos don't name an MVP, but we do -- at least for the games at the Xcel Energy Center. And our man is:

* Dan Kronick, F, Holy Angels -- 6’2", 182 lb. senior – 7/16/84 DOB

What made Kronick's performance special was not only how he performed on ice during the tournament, but what he had to overcome this season just to get to the tournament. Kronick broke his left ankle in a game against Eastview on December 20th. Surgery was performed, and he missed the next eight weeks. He was back on the ice on February 14th, and played his first full game a week later. Notched four goals in Holy Angels' 6-3 semifinal win over Roseville.

Player Profile:
Plays with intensity; intimidates opponents
Fully engaged. Physically establishes his presence on the ice every shift
Goes hard to the net
Breakaway speed -- at this level
Strong enough to skate through checks
Quick release; finishes off around the net
Led tournament with six goals in three games 

Players to Watch:

* Kevin Rollwagen, F, Holy Angels -- 5'8", 141 lb. junior -- DOB unavail. 

Player Profile:
Patient with the puck
Keeps feet moving in the offensive zone 
Good hands; controls the puck well in traffic
An aggressive forechecker; creates turnovers
Good backhander; finished off around the net
Can skate through checks
Scored two goals and had five assists here
Had 54 points during the regular 27-game season

* Jim Kilpatrick, F, Holy Angels -- 5'11", 160 lb. junior -- 1/27/85 DOB

Player Profile:
Quick, with good hands
Finishes nicely
Supports the player with the puck
Scored one goal with six assists 
Had 63 points during the regular 27-game season

* Mark Van Guilder, F, Roseville -- 6’ 2", 180 lb. senior -- 1/17/84 DOB 

Player Profile:
Physical player who uses his size well 
Finishes his checks
Strong forechecker
Excellent work ethic; goes hard every shift
Strong shot with quick release
Scored one goal with three assists during the three-game tournament
Led Roseville with 52 points during 28-game regular season

* Garrett O.Regan, F, Hill-Murray -- 5'11", 165 lb. junior -- 4/23/85 DOB 

Player Profile:
Excellent skater; both quick and fast
Quick release on his wrist shot
Finishes around the net
Supports the play and the puck handler
Scored two goals and had three assists during the three-game tournament
Led his team with 35-30-65 line during the regular 28-game season

* Tom Morrow, D, Maplewood -- 6’ 5", 190 lb. senior -- '84 DOB 

Player Profile:
Excellent skating skills for a 6’ 5" player
Long stride makes him deceivingly fast
Can carry the puck end to end
Uses his size/reach to advantage

* Adam Dirlam, D, Bl. Jefferson -- 6’ 2", 185 lb. senior -- 5/29/83 DOB 

Player Profile:
Physical player; uses his size well
Team leader
Very aggressive in the defensive zone
Sticks with his check
Has a quick, strong release from the blue line

* Barnabas Birkeland, D, Elk River -- 6'0", 170 lb. senior -- 6/22/83 DOB

Player Profile:
Supports the play well
Doesn’t overcommit, or get caught out of position
Had 26 points during the 28-game regular season 

* Nate Hagemo, D, Holy Angels -- 5'10", 170 lb. freshman -- 10/8/86 DOB

Player Profile:
Overall play was exceptional for a freshman
Handles puck well
Made quick -- and correct -- decisions with the puck
Excellent lateral movement
Skating skills strong -- both quick and fast
Eager to take the body; stays with his check
Excellent at holding the offensive blue line
Keeps his shot low and on the ice

* Ben Luth, G, Holy Angels -- 5'9", 160 lb. junior -- DOB unavailable

Player Profile:
Fundamentally solid
Stays low on the shot
Controls rebounds
1.75 goals per game average during regular season. Save percentage of .910

* Tom Anderson, G, Roseville -- H/W unavailable -- senior -- '84 DOB 

Player Profile:
Strong glove hand
Controls rebounds
Covers up well
Made good decisions on playing the puck
1.23 GAA during the regular season

The Official All Tournament Team:

Mark Van Guilder, Roseville
Collin Cody, Roseville 
Garrett O.Regan, Hill-Murray
Dan Kronick, Holy Angels
Jim Kilpatrick, Holy Angels
Kevin Rollwagen, Holy Angels
Barnabas Birkeland, Elk River
Adam Dirlam, Bloomington Jefferson
Nick Klaren, Roseville 
Matt Czech, Hill-Murray
Ben Luth, Holy Angels
Tony Ciro, Hill-Murray
Leading Scorers: Goals/Assists/Points
Kevin Rollwagen, 2-5-7, Holy Angels
Jim Kilpatrick, 1-6-7, Holy Angels
Dan Kronick, 6-0-6, Holy Angels
Tyler Howells, 4-1-5, Holy Angels
Collin Cody, 2-3-5, Roseville 
Garrett O.Regan, 2-3-5, Hill-Murray
Mark Van Guilder, 1-3-4, Roseville 
Tim Madsen, 2-2-4, Elk River
Brian Kaufman, 3-1-4, Hill-Murray


Monarchs Crowned

The #1 seed New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs, behind a sparkling 36 save effort from BC recruit Joe Pearce and a pair of goals from Union recruit Jonathan Poirier, held off #2 seed New York Apple Core to take the 2002 EJHL title tonight at Holy Cross College.

Pearce was the difference in the game, as Apple Core dominated the play, outshooting the Monarchs 37-26.

In the first period, the 6'4" native of Brick, NJ stopped two breakaways and three point-blank shots. 

The Monarchs got on the board first, off a Poirier powerplay goal at 9:32, and took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission.  

Poirier struck for the game-winner early in the second period, coming down the left side and letting go a slap shot that eluded Apple Core netminder Brad Roberts at the 2:28 mark. BU recruit John LaLiberte, the league's leading scorer, picked up an assist on the goal, his second of the night.  

Apple Core made it a one-goal game at the 9:11 mark when LW Ryan Cruthers scored on the power play, with assists going to defensemen Kevin Schaeffer and Jekabs Redlihs. Outside of Pearce, Redlihs was the best player on the ice tonight. 

There was no scoring in the third period. Apple Core poured it on in a desperate bid for the game-tying goal, but Pearce held the fort.

The Monarchs, it should be noted, had to get through the playoffs without first line center Joe Dumais, who ten days ago broke his neck (cracked C1 vertebrae) in a game vs. the Junior Bruins. While the Sean Tremblay-led squad didn't have it rolling the last couple of games the way they did at times during the regular season, they did what they had to do, finishing the season with an eye-popping 35-2-1 record and, most importantly, taking home the hardware.  

Box Score/EJHL Final/Mon. 3/11/02


Guyer Named Mr. Hockey 

Greenway HS forward Gino Guyer has, as expected, been named winner of the Mr. Hockey award, given annually to the top high school player in the state of Minnesota. 

Guyer, a 5'11", 180 lb. center who'll be playing at the University of Minnesota in the fall, finished up the season with a 35-46-81 line in 26 games. Greenway, which was expected to contend for the state championship after finishing third last season, was knocked out by Duluth East in the Section 7AA semifinals. 

Guyer, also named the Associated Press Player of the Year in Minnesota, won the award over nine other semifinalists, one of whom was his Greenway linemate -- and fellow Gopher recruit -- Andy Sertich.

The other eight finalists were: Nick Licari and Tommy Kolar (both Duluth East); David Backes (Spring Lake Park); Tom Biondich (International Falls); Ryan Carter (White Bear Lake); Travis Morin (Osseo); B.J. Radovich (Hermantown); and Mark Van Guilder (Roseville).

Guyer, who once again is finishing up the season with the Lincoln Stars (USHL), was a top running back and a member of the school's football team, which reached the state semifinals in November.  

Mr. Hockey Award voting is done by the Five NCAA Div. I hockey coaches in the state, and a select group of NHL scouts and members of the media. 

Past Mr. Hockey Award Winners:

1985: Tom Chorske, Minneapolis Southwest
1986: George Pelawa, Bemidji
1987: Kris Miller, Greenway of Coleraine
1988: Larry Olimb, Warroad
1989: Trent Klatt, Osseo
1990: Joe Dziedzic, Minneapolis Edison
1991: Darby Hendrickson, Richfield
1992: Brian Bonin, White Bear Lake
1993: Nick Checco, Bloomington Jefferson
1994: Mike Crowley, Bloomington Jefferson
1995: Eric Rasmussen, St. Louis Park
1996: Dave Spehar, Duluth East
1997: Aaron Miskovich, Grand Rapids
1998: Johnny Pohl, Red Wing
1999: Jeff Taffe, Hastings
2000: Paul Martin, Elk River
2001: Marty Sertich, Roseville


Monarchs, Apple Core Advance to EJHL Final

The #1-seeded New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs topped the Walpole Jr. Stars 4-1 in Eastern Junior Hockey League semifinal action at Holy Cross College this afternoon. 

6'3" Army-bound center Morgan Ward put the Monarchs on the board first, scoring at the 9:26 mark. In the second and third periods though, the line of Jonathan Poirier (2g,1a), Denny Ohlson (1g,2a), and John LaLiberte (2a) went to work, figuring in three of the four Monarchs goals overall and putting the game out of Walpole's reach.

Walpole's only goal came when RW Paul Markarian slid one past the outstretched arm of New Hampshire goaltender Joe Pearce and into the net at 6:55 mark. 

By far the more entertaining of the two games was the second, as both Apple Core and the Coyotes came out flying and making plays, both teams connecting for goals in the first minute of play. LW Mike Bordieri connected at the 26 second mark off a pretty feed from center Keith Johnson. That was the only lead the Coyotes had all night as, 20 seconds later, RW Ryan Hodkinson got it right back. Late in the first Apple Core upped its lead to 2-1 when C Andrew Dawe, playing the left point on the power play, slithered one through a screen and past Coyotes netminder Jean-Frederic McKay at the 18:19 mark.

Things settled down a little in the second, with the only goal coming off the stick of Apple Core defenseman Brian Dobler. 

In the third, though, things got interesting as the Coyotes came out storming, hoping to wrest back control of the game and extend its season another night. While they controlled the play in the period, it was a case of too little, too late. 

EJHL Finals:
New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs vs. New York Apple Core, 7 pm @ Holy Cross

Box Scores/EJHL semifinals/Sun. 3/10/02


Holy Angels Minnesota Champs

Holy Angels, a 585 student parochial school in Richfield, Minn., defeated Hill-Murray (595 students) 4-2 last night in the first all-Catholic title game in Minnesota State High School Tournament history.

Holy Angels fell behind early when Hill-Murray's Tony Rawlings connected at 8:24 of the first period, but it would turn out to be their only lead of the game. A little over three minutes later Holy Angels senior Dan Kronick evened things up when he batted a rebound of a Matt Kaiser shot out of the air at 11:29.

Holy Angels scored one more goal in the first, by Kevin Krmpotich.  A Tyler Howells goal in the second upped the lead to 3-1. Nineteen seconds into the third, however, Hill-Murray's Brian Kaufman notched a power play goal to cut the lead to one. But that was as close as Hill-Murray would get, for Holy Angels forward Kevin Rollwagen backhanded home an insurance goal with 2:13 left in regulation.

For Holy Angels, the win was its 20th in a row. The Greg Trebil-coached Stars are a skilled, deep team. Not only that, but many of their key players are underclassmen, so they look strong for next season as well. 

Interestingly, both Holy Angles and Hill-Murray have smaller enrollments than the two schools that met in yesterday afternoon's Class A final -- Totino-Grace and Red Wing HS. Totino-Grace, also a Catholic School, won 3-2 on a shorthanded goal by junior Trevor Graham with 3:10 left in regulation. It was Graham's second goal of the game. In Friday's 2-1 semifinal win over Fergus Falls, Graham scored both of his team's goals. 


-- At the traditional dogpile at the final buzzer, Totino-Grace junior defenseman Ben Cattoor had his hand sliced for 15 stitches by a teammate's skate blade. 

-- Attendance at yesterday's Class A final was 3,789. Class AA attendance was 16,345. The total four-day attendance figure for the Xcel Center was 88,565, down 23,000 from last year, and the lowest attendance figure since 1975. 

-- The fact that three of the four teams in the final were Catholic schools -- it would have been a clean sweep if favored Rochester Lourdes had taken care of Red Wing in the semis -- could mean Minnesota is becoming more like Massachusetts. Or it could just be a one-year aberration.  

For the record, the tournament went to two classes in 1994, placing schools with smaller enrollments in Class A. Smaller schools can petition to move up to AA, but, realistically, only the Catholic schools have a shot at getting to St. Paul when March rolls around. 

Box Scores/Finals/Sat. 3/9


All-Tournament Teams Announced

Here they are.

Class AA:
F-- Dan Kronick, Holy Angels
F-- Jimmy Kilpatrick, Holy Angels
F-- Kevin Rollwagen, Holy Angels
F-- Garrett O. Regan, Hill-Murray
F-- Mark VanGuilder, Roseville
F-- Collin Cody, Roseville
D -- Matt Czech, Hill-Murray
D-- Nick Klaren, Roseville
D-- Adam Dirlam, Bloomington-Jefferson
D-- Barnabas Birkeland, Elk River
G-- Tony Ciro, Hill-Murray
G-- Ben Luth, Holy Angels
Class A:
F-- Dan McCauley, Totino-Grace
F-- Joe Laplant, Red Wing
F-- Mike Pohl, Red Wing
F-- Tom Pohl, Red Wing
F-- Ryan Miller, Fergus Falls
F-- Brandon Harrington, Rochester-Lourdes
D-- Tim Serie, Totino-Grace
D-- Reid Cashman, Red Wing
D-- Charlie Cobb, Rochester-Lourdes
D-- Marcus Reszka, Rochester-Lourdes
G-- Kevin Piper, Totino-Grace
G-- Adam Hendel, Red Wing      


Kronick's Four Leads the Way 

Holy Angels senior forward Dan Kronick, who broke his ankle on Dec. 20 and didn't return to action until the section playoffs, notched four goals to lead his team to a 6-3 win over Roseville and into tonight's Minnesota Class AA final. 

Two of Kronick's goals came in the third period, which started tied up at 3-3. The first, which turned out to be the game winner, came just 16 seconds in. Junior forward Kevin Huck carried the puck into the Roseville zone and made a perfect pass to Kronick, who broke in alone on Roseville goalie Tom Anderson and put the puck over him for a 4-3 lead. Kronick scored his fourth, with Huck picking up another assist, at 8:21. With 52 seconds left senior Tyler Howells added an empty netter.  

In tonight's final (7 pm CST), Holy Angels will face Hill-Murray, 5-0 winners over Bloomington Jefferson. 

Hill-Murray got an 18-save shutout from Tony Ciro, who also had an assist on his team's first goal. Jefferson was only able to muster six shots on goal over the first two periods, but came to life in the third, by which time Hill-Murray was up, 4-0.

Leading the scoring parade were junior Garrett O. Regan (1g,2a), and seniors Brian Kaufman (2g), Peter Allen (1g,1a), and Bob Hejny (2a). 

Bloomington Jefferson coach Tom Saterdalen, who will be retiring after today's third-place game, started junior Ben Corbett in goal over senior Jeremy Earl.

Saterdalen said that after the section playoffs, he promised Corbett a start in the second game at the Xcel Center. That was last night, of course; Corbett faced seven shots in the first period, allowing three goals. Earl took over to start the second. 

Tonight's Class AA Championship:
Holy Angels (25-4-1) vs. Hill-Murray (23-5-2), 7 pm
Third Place Game: 
Roseville (27-21) vs. Bloomington Jefferson (21-6-2), 4 pm

Box Scores/Semifinals/Fri. 3/8


Pohl Brothers Lead Red Wing to Class A Final

Last night, Red Wing junior forward Tom Pohl notched four points on three goals (the last an empty-netter) and one assist. His brother, senior forward Mike Pohl, had three assists in a 5-2 upset of Rochester Lourdes last night at the Xcel Center.

The Pohls are the brothers of University of Minnesota captain and leading scorer John Pohl who, by the way, had four points (2g,2a) as the Gophers pounded North Dakota 7-2 at Mariucci Arena last night. 

The Pohls big night came at the expense of Rochester Lourdes goalie Dan Smith, their first cousin. 

In the other semi, Totino-Grace, despite being outshot 25-11, edged Fergus Falls, 2-1. 

Trevor Graham scored both goals for Totino-Grace -- the game winner coming with 22 seconds to play -- to send them into today's title game.  

Today's Class A Championship:
Totino Grace (26-2-1) vs. Red Wing (23-5-1), noon. 
Third Place Game:
Fergus Falls (18-8-1) vs. Rochester Lourdes (27-2-1), 9 am


EJHL Playoff Schedule Change 

The playoff schedule for the EJHL semis on Sunday has been changed to allow NY Apple Core additional time for travel.

Here's the new schedule:

Semifinal Schedule -- Sunday 3/10 at Holy Cross College, Worcester, Mass.
N.H. Jr. Monarchs (36-2-1) vs. Walpole Stars  (22-12-4), 2 p.m. 
Apple Core (27-10-2) vs. New England Jr. Coyotes (25-11-3), 4:30 
There is no schedule change for Monday's championship game, which faces off at 7 pm at Holy Cross. 


Four Move On in Minnesota 

Holy Angels, Roseville, Bloomington Jefferson, and Hill-Murray were the winners in yesterday's AA quarterfinal action at a sold-out Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. 

In the day's opening game, Holy Angels knocked off Cloquet, 5-2, for its 18th consecutive victory. Two of the Holy Angels goals were shorthanded efforts, and two came on the powerplay. The top line of junior Jimmy Kilpatrick (1g,3a), senior Tyler Howells (2g,1a), and junior Kevin Rollwagen (1g,2a) figured in four of the five goals. Senior Dan Kronick, who missed 20 games because of injury this season, also added a goal. 

In the second game, Roseville knocked off Moorhead, 4-2.

Roseville dominated the first period, taking a 3-1 lead. In the second period Moorhead came out hard, and took over the game, but Roseville senior goalie Tom Anderson came up big, allowing the Spuds just one goal. In the third period, Roseville, by far the deeper of the two teams, added an insurance goal for the final 4-2 margin of victory. 

In the first of the evening games, Bloomington Jefferson knocked out defending champion Elk River, 2-0 in a total snoozefest. Juniors Cory Gilbert and Brad Peterson scored the Jaguars goals, and senior goaltender Jeremy Earl picked up an 18-save shutout, though he had some luck riding on his side, too. 

In the late game, Hill-Murray got a big scare from Lakeville (the only team in the tournament to finish the regular season with a losing record), but prevailed in overtime, 3-2.

Lakeville senior goalie J.D. Johnston, whose play in the sectionals got his team to the Xcel Center, had 23 saves on the night but couldn't stop Hill-Murray's Tony Rawlings from scoring the gamewinner -- on the powerplay -- at 2:53 of overtime. 

The winning goal came after standout Lakeville junior defenseman Tony Cummings was called for hooking Hill-Murray forward Garrett O. Regan. Replays later showed it to be a questionable call.  

Hill-Murray scored almost immediately. The rebound of a shot from the point came out to Rawlings, the uncovered forward, who was stationed at the post and knocked it home easily.

Earlier, Regan and Jeff Klosner scored for Hill-Murray, and senior Tony Ciro had an impressive game in goal. 

Lakeville, in case you've never heard of it, is in Section 1AA, which is weak. It encompasses the southeastern corner of the state, and includes the Rochester schools, Austin, etc. 

Lakeville, despite their record, did record a win during the regular season over top-ranked Apple Valley. While they lack the high-end players Hill-Murray has, they gave themselves a chance to win by working hard at both ends of the ice.

Box Scores/Quarterfinals/Thurs. 3/7

Today's semifinal matchups at the Xcel Center: 

Class AA:
Holy Angels (24-4-1) vs. Roseville (27-1-1), 7:05 pm
Bloomington Jefferson (21-5-2) vs. Hill-Murray (22-5-2), 9:45
There will be a championship game aura surrounding tonight's Holy Angels-Roseville game. Most observers feel these are the two best teams remaining in the field. 


EJHL Final Four All Set

In EJHL quarterfinal action last night, Apple Core took apart the Lowell Junior Lockmonsters, 7-0, and the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs dismantled the Capital District Selects, 8-1. 

In Tuesday's quarterfinal games, the Walpole Stars topped the Boston Jr. Bruins, 5-2, and the New England Jr. Coyotes beat the Valley Jr. Warriors, also by a 5-2 score.

Semifinal Schedule -- Sunday 3/10 at Holy Cross College, Worcester, Mass.
Apple Core (27-10-2) vs. New England Jr. Coyotes (25-11-3), noon
N.H. Jr. Monarchs (36-2-1) vs. Walpole Stars  (22-12-4), 4:00 pm


Coughlin Rumors False

Cushing junior RW Kevin Coughlin was not arrested for hitting a policeman in the wake of his team's 2-1 overtime loss to Taft at UMass' Mullins Center on Saturday. Nor was he led out of the rink in handcuffs or anything of the sort. Nor did he hit a cop. By Sunday, however, that very story had gained wide currency. Over the last 48 hours we've received numerous calls from people in the hockey world asking if they are true. 

They are not, and they should be put to rest immediately. It's not fair to see a 16-year-old kid tainted by accusations of something he didn't do. What he did do was take a penalty -- it was a chop and the ref made the right call -- that led to his team's loss in the biggest game of the year. This is sports, and those things happen.

That said, we can also see how the story evolved. With the game over and the Taft players celebrating, Coughlin, clearly distraught and caught up in the emotion of the moment, came out of the penalty box, smashed his stick on the ice and confronted the referee. The ref appeared to wave him away, but Coughlin came back at him. At that point, apparently, the official decided he'd heard enough, and led Coughlin directly to the bench area. There, Cushing coach Steve Jacobs got him off the ice and in the direction of the dressing room. 

After the Cushing players exited the ice, Jacobs made his own feelings pretty well known to the referee -- and it didn't look like he was thanking him for his work, either. 

The Taft players, who had to exit through the same gate, were being held back by their coach, Mike Maher. There was a lot of tension in the air, and it was clear that Maher wasn't going to let his players budge from center ice until he was absolutely sure that every Cushing player was not only off the ice, but well down the runway.

Right after that, two requests came over the loudspeaker for police assistance. They were loud, made with urgency and, given the situation, sparked people's imaginations. 

What was happening was that the officials wanted a police escort. Marlene Shea, the Mullins Center Events Staff Manager, said that, "Basically, the referees requested an escort to their dressing room and out of the building." 

One can assume that something was said that caused the officials to be concerned for their safety. 

Tangential to this, and probably contributing to the officials' sense of unease, was an earlier incident that occurred when the two teams were heading to their dressing rooms as the ice was being resurfaced between the end of regulation and overtime. Unfortunately, the two teams had to cross one another in the hallway, probably not the best situation given the tension in the air. At any rate, a Taft player said something fairly innocuous, reportedly, "Let's go, boys, we've got them on the run." When Cushing sophomore Mike Reynolds, a rarely-used defenseman, responded by using an expletive regarding Taft, another Taft player, Ryan Ahearn, looked at him and just shook his head. Reynolds then punched him in the face. Taft senior forward Todd O'Hara then stepped in and asked "What the hell is going on?" He too was punched in the face by Reynolds. 

After that, members of both teams held back their players, and it didn't escalate beyond that. 

Taft coach Maher and other grownups there -- St. Sebastian's coach Steve Dagdigian was in the hallway and so was NEPSIHA president and St. Paul's coach Tim Pratt -- made sure that both teams got into their dressing rooms without further incident. As both squads were partway into their rooms, Jacobs arrived around the corner and, after hearing from witnesses what had happened, said he'd take care of it from his end, and stepped inside. Reportedly, Reynolds got undressed, and wasn't on the bench in overtime. 

With all this as background, then, it's no wonder the officials felt unsafe and desired a police escort. This reporter was told that officials as a matter of course get escorts after Hockey East games. It's too bad that the officials felt they needed such protection at a prep school tournament game, but they did and we're not going to sugarcoat it. We just want to set the record straight concerning Coughlin. We also wanted to make sure that the NEPSIHA tournament committee got credit for once again putting on an excellent tournament. A lot of work goes into it, and nobody's making any money off it -- it's a labor of love. 

And while we're at it, a couple of words regarding the two teams in the final. When we saw Taft in early December, we gave them a snowball's chance in hell of getting as far as they did, mainly because they had lost a ton of offense in Chris Collins, Ryan Shannon, and Christian Jensen. But they fooled us, going all the way to the title game and winding up an impressive season with a 21-4 record.

St. Sebastian's did what no other team has done in 15 years -- repeat. Ultimately, the Arrows reign because they move the puck. No other prep school team we saw can touch them in this important area. In the end, it's the pure skills that win the big games, and that's why St. Sebastian's became the first squad since Thayer, with Jeremy Roenick and Tony Amonte, did it in 1986-87. 



Prep Tourney Standouts

The NEPSIHA doesn't name an official All-Tournament Team for the prep school playoffs. However, if it did, these are the guys who would get our vote -- and we're only talking about the games in Amherst here, not the quarterfinals. 

Forwards: This is easy -- Senior Mike Morris and junior Kenny Roche (St. Sebastian's) and junior Casey Ftorek (Taft). An honorable mention goes to St. Seb's junior center Brian Boyle, who was particularly strong in Saturday's game. 

Defense: This is a tough one. We'll give one slot to senior Marvin Degon (Cushing). The next slot would be between junior Sean Sullivan (St. Seb's) and senior Jaime Sifers (Taft) -- and we can't make up our mind. Since we don't have to, we'll punt and go with three D.  Seniors Seamus Young (St. Seb's) and Peter Hafner (Taft) get honorable mentions.

Goal: Both junior Kevin Regan (St. Sebastian's) and junior Travis Russell (Taft) were very good, so it's not surprising their teams faced each other in the final. Russell, in facing Cushing and St. Seb's, faced more high-quality shots and had two pressure-cooker games to deal with. On the other hand, the less-flashy Regan faced more shots overall -- and had a higher GAA and save percentage. We'll go with both.


Harvard to Bring in Another Goalie

Harvard, which has been plagued by inconsistent goaltending this season, is bringing in another goalie for the fall: John Daigneau of the Chicago Steel (USHL). Daigneau, in his second year with the Steel, has appeared in 31 games. He has an .893 save percentage and a 3.24 GAA. Those numbers keep Daigneau out of the league's elite, but he's 6'3", 190 lbs., is quick and athletic, and likes to challenge the shooter. 

A 12/31/82 birthdate, Daigneau is in his second year with the Steel, coached by Steve Richmond. He's from Brookfield, Wisconsin and was also recruited by Cornell. 

Daigneau will challenge sophomore Will Crothers and freshman Dov Grumet-Morris for playing time. 


MacDonald to BGSU

Victoria Salsa (BCHL) RW Kirk MacDonald has committed to Bowling Green. An '83, MacDonald is 6'2", 210 lbs. He's a power forward with toughness and a strong shot. Last year, MacDonald and current BGSU freshman goaltender Jordan Sigalet were teammates on the Salsa, which won the BCHL championship.


Summerfield to UMass in '03

6'0", 175 lb. Capital District Selects (EJHL) C/LW Garrett Summerfield will be playing for Toot Cahoon at UMass in the fall of '03.

A smart, skilled forward, Summerfield will be playing for Jim Salfi's club again next season. Summerfield finished the regular season with a 27-30-50 line in 38 games played. That ties him for eighth in league scoring with teammate Evgeny Kadatsky and New England Jr. Coyote forward Mark McCutcheon.) 

A 5/5/84 birthdate, Summerfield is from Endicott, NY.


St. Sebastian's Repeats 

Amherst, Mass. -- St. Sebastian's won its second consecutive NEPSIHA title with a 3-2 win over Taft here at the Mullins Center this afternoon.

St. Sebastian's scored all three of its goals in an eight-minute span of the first period, with Kenny Roche (1g,2a) and Mike Morris (1g,1a) leading the attack. 

Junior Kevin Regan kicked out 25 shots for the winners. For Taft, junior Travis Russell had 15 saves.

In  Div. II, Tilton won its third consecutive title on an OT goal by junior defenseman Matt Hutchins. Mike Mullen, the son of NHL Hall of Famer Joe Mullen, notched both of Tilton's goals in regulation. 

New England Prep Page


Taft, St. Seb's Advance to Prep Title Game 

St. Sebastian's got big games from Brian Boyle, Seamus Young, Mike Morris, and Kenny Roche, each of whom had two points; and Kevin Regan kicked out 21 of 22 shots as St. Sebastian's rolled past Berkshire 5-1 early this evening. 

The Arrows, the 2001 New England prep champions, will attempt to defend their title when they go up against Taft tomorrow at 12:30 pm, here at the Mullins Center on the campus of UMass. 

The day's most dramatic tilt came earlier in the afternoon when Taft junior forward Casey Ftorek scored his second goal of the game -- and second powerplay goal -- 3:39 into overtime to give Taft a 2-1 upset win over Cushing.

In Div. II action, Tilton topped Proctor 4-3 to advance to tomorrow morning's title game against Hebron, 6-2 winners over Berwick.

New England Prep Page


N.J. Devils Pee-Wees Shine in Québec City 

This past Sunday, before a crowd of over 10,000 at Le Colisée, the New Jersey Devils topped the Detroit Red Wings, 3-1, to take the North American title at the 43rd Québec City International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament. 

To get to the finals, the Devils, coached by John DiNorcia, had to get by the Philadelphia Flyers in the semis -- and they did, 3-2, in dramatic fashion, scoring the game-tying goal with 1.5 seconds remaining in regulation and then winning it in overtime.

Of the 40 players in that game, 34 attended the development camp for '88s the Atlantic District ran last summer under Kingswood-Oxford head coach John Riley, assisted by DiNorcia. Clearly, the camp, which ran for nearly two weeks and  concluded with a mini-festival at Kent State University in August, well prepared the two teams for the competition in Québec City. The future is looking good in the Atlantic District.  

In this year's tournament, there was a North American Cup and an International Cup. There was no World Cup, as in years past. If there had been, the Devils would have crossed over to play Chomutov, from the Czech Republic. 

It's impossible to win this tournament without high-end talent, so hear are some of the kids who really stood out. Some, no doubt, you'll be watching for a good number of years. Unless otherwise mentioned, all are '88s. 

The top forward was 5'7", 155 lb. Chris Atkinson, a RC from Sparta, NJ who drew raves not just for his offensive skills but his play in all zones. Atkinson, an unselfish player, has good hands, superior vision, and makes players around him better. He excelled in all situations, and played a physical, determined game. He exhibits similar skills and feel for the game as his older brother, Michael Atkinson, a freshman at the Salisbury School, but projects to be bigger. 

Other top forwards were Rich Falasca, Corey Callen, and Adam Houli. 

Falasca, a RW from Monroe, NY, is a 5'7", 150 lb. power forward with an exceptional burst of speed. Falasca scored the tying goal with 1.5 seconds left in the semifinal against the Flyers.

Callen, from Annandale, NJ is a 5'6", 140 lb. center with excellent playmaking skills. He's a late '88 -- November, to be precise.

Houli, the LW on Callen's line, is a 5'5", 140 lb. native of Howell, NJ and a pure goal scorer. Houli, who led the team and finished second in the tournament in scoring, roofed a beauty with 35 seconds left in OT to win the semi. 

The top defenseman was Jonathan Wolter, a 5'7", 145 lb. right shot from Chester, NJ who has size, strength, and power to his game. Wolter cleared the zone consistently, QB'd the powerplay, and logged a ton of ice time.

Another top d-man was Kevin Shattenkirk, a 5'7", 140 lb. native of New Rochelle, NY. Shattenkirk, savvy and skilled, was the other QB on the powerplay, killed penalties, and also logged a ton of ice time. Shattenkirk -- he's only an '89 -- is the younger brother of 6'0" Taft sophomore forward Keith Shattenkirk

Strong goaltending is crucial to winning the tournament and the Devils' Andrew Margolin -- also an '89 -- was excellent. A native of Mahwah, NJ, Margolin keeps himself square to the puck, and shows poise and confidence. He also plays the puck extremely well for his age. 

As long as we're talking about the Atlantic District we should mention that the Flyers, coached by Pat Ferrill, had some excellent players also.

Leading the way up front was RW Brett Hextall (yes, son of Ron). Hextall, who led the whole tournament in scoring, was probably the strongest forward there. A power forward, Hextall was very tough to control down low. Very difficult to knock off the puck, too. Just like Dad.

Center Luke Popko, who led the pee-wee nationals in scoring last April, was also excellent, a strong, two-way player with a knack for scoring big goals. It helps that he has a cannon of a shot. 

Goaltender Brian Mountain, a poised, confident kid who's extremely strong technically, is another excellent prospect. He's the son of sports agent Steve Mountain. 


Minnesota State HS Tournament Taking Shape

In Class AA, Cloquet/Esko/Carlton, Holy Angels, Roseville, Bloomington-Jefferson, and Lakeville have all won their sections and will advance to the quarterfinals of the Minnesota State High School Tournament Thursday March 7 at the Xcel Center in St. Paul. 

The eight-team field will be rounded out after the completion of a pair of sectional finals tonight, and then one more tomorrow.  

As for the five so far, here's how they got there: 

Cloquet: The Lumberjacks, behind an unassisted, shorthanded goal by junior forward Mike Erickson at 10:52 of the third period knocked out the Duluth East Greyhounds,1-0, before an overflow crowd of 5,500 at the DECC last night. Senior goaltender Josh Johnson kicked out 19 shots for the shutout and, when the final buzzer sounded, pulled down the crossbar and crouched under the net so he wouldn't get hurt by his jubilant teammates dog-piling on top of him. Johnson, you might say, is looking ahead to the Xcel Center. Cloquet will meet Holy Angels at 12:05 Thursday. 

Bloomington-Jefferson: It's Tom Saterdalen's 29th and final season as coach of the Jaguars and he's going to the state tournament again. Last night, his charges, despite being outshot, topped Buffalo HS, 3-1. Jeremy Earl had 22 saves for the win and Adam Dirlam, Dan Willman, and Brad Peterson scored the goals. Note: Under Saterdalen, Bloomington-Jefferson made the first of its 14 tournament appearances in 1980, and since then have won it five times. Next Thursday at 7:05, the Jaquars will meet the winner of tomorrow's Elk River-Osseo game. 

Holy Angels: In the sectional semifinals, they needed two OTs to get past Eastview. Last night, in the finals, they knocked off Apple Valley, 3-1, for their 17th consecutive win. Kevin Huck, Jim Kilpatrick, and Tyler Howells each had one goal. Apple Valley, which had a great season, finishes at 26-2. Holy Angels meets Cloquet at the Xcel Center on Thursday.

Roseville: A Mike Sertich goal at 10:50 of the second OT gave Roseville a 4-3 win over Cretin-Derham Hall last night. Roseville, now 25-1, had to gut it out, coming back from a 3-1 second period deficit. Cretin finishes the season at 25-4. Next Thursday, Roseville meets the winner of tomorrow night's Moorhead-Alexandria match at 2:45 pm. 

Lakeville: Senior forward Matt Kerchner had a goal and an assist in Lakeville's 2-1 win over Rochester Century, and goaltender J.D. Johnston kicked out 31 shots. Lakeville will be making their first trip to state. They will play the winner of tonight's White Bear Lake/Hill-Murray tilt. 

In Section A, Fergus Falls, Totino-Grace, East Grand Forks, Rochester Lourdes, and Princeton are all making the trip to the Xcel Center for the quarterfinal round Wed. March 6. 

On Tuesday night, Fergus Falls edged Little Falls, 3-2; and Princeton edged Pine City/Rush City by the same score. Last night, East Grand Forks topped Warroad, 4-2; Totino Grace topped Breck, 3-1; and Rochester Lourdes topped New Ulm 2-1 in double overtime. 


Hudson Dusted

In the Wisconsin state tournament, top-ranked Superior HS scored three third-period goals to earn a 5-4 come-from-behind win over defending state champion and #2 ranked Hudson High in the quarterfinals at Madison last night. 

The winning goal came when senior forward Chris Sislo took a pass from Jake Nelson, who was set up behind the net, and fired it home with 5:21 remaining.

Big Ben Bosworth had a chance to tie it for Hudson when, with 2:44 left, he had a perfect scoring opportunity, but Superior goalie Keith Johnson got a piece of it and the puck deflected harmlessly off the crossbar. 

For the Spartans, the path to the championship is now looking pretty clear -- if they take care of business. The Spartans (19-3-1) haven't lost a game to a Wisconsin school all season. Their three losses all came against Minnesota high schools. 

USHR Headlines


New England Prep Hockey News