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Rosters: U.S. Select Teams 

7/31/02

Select 16s: Best of Show   

Here are the standouts from the recent U.S. Select 16 Festival, which, as you may have heard, was won by New York, 4-3, over Central. 

An unfortunate aspect to this year's festival was the officiating, which was worse than at any other USA Select Festival we can recall. 

From the first day, games featured endless pushing, shoving, and yapping after the whistles, bad/missed calls (often due to officials being out of position), and too much shouting at coaches. We don't normally complain about poor officiating in this page -- we hear too much of it as it is -- but all the coaches we spoke to there were very disappointed with the officiating. If this group of officials get moved up the ladder without significant work on their craft, we can look forward to some very badly-officiated games in the near future -- and at many different levels, too.

Another negative was the ESL Sports Center itself, a generic building that featured two roller hockey rinks and two ice sheets. The ice sheets were dank affairs with poor sight lines. On top of all that, the ice was mediocre at best, mainly because of the warmth from the roller rinks and the heat from outdoors. The ESL Sports Center is also in a totally bland part of the city miles from downtown, an area replete with chain motels and restaurants and tired-looking shopping malls.   

The plus this year, which kids, coaches, and USA Hockey staffers who've put in time at St. Cloud State's dorms during a heat wave will relate to, was air conditioning in the rooms (on the campus of RIT, 15 minutes from the rink). The food was also reported to be a huge improvement over St. Paul, and there were other amenities, like Internet connections, etc. 

Top players missing from the Select festival included Robbie Schremp, Adam Pineault, Taylor Razska, Kevin Swallow; and defensemen Matt Lashoff and Brendan Burns.

Anyway, in the ranking below we give the most weight to actual performance at the festival, but we don't totally disregard future potential, either. If a player's performance is significantly hurt by injury and we are aware of it, we will mention it. Finally, remember that, as good as the players are at these things, it's still summer hockey. We've all seen kids who are just not as good in the summer as winter, which is OK. Winter is when the games count! 

Note:  The rankings below reflect the views of the U.S. Hockey Report only. We we have neither the time nor inclination to answer letters of complaint about individual player rankings. Most of the kids here fall into three categories:  1) Kids who flat-out played well, regardless of how they project for DI or pro hockey.  2) Kids who are excellent players who either played a little (or a lot) below par and/or were injured. Since this can also work as a finders list we were careful to include -- at least somewhere in the ranking -- all such players. 3) Projects who could turn out to be big-time players, but right now are just big, raw, untutored kids growing into their body.

The rankings, as mentioned above, are weighted toward the first category -- the kids who simply came and played well.  

 

Forwards:

1. Chris Bourque, Mass., 5-7/160 -- Left shot RW from Cushing Academy has all the tools. To start with, he's very physical and, while he's not big, his hits are hard. He can also take a hit better than anyone in his age group. He just rolls off and keeps going. He sets picks. He's also a strong skater whose low center of gravity makes it very hard to knock him off his skates. He also makes nifty plays, gets opens extremely well, and finishes his scoring attempts. Made the best hip check we saw here. Nature? Nurture? A little of both? Bourque won a spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 4-2-6.

2. Billy Smith, Pacific, 5-11/180 -- LC. Excellent combination of skill and physical play. Will take a hit -- and slide a perfect pass to the open man. Will pound opponents, too. Plays a pro-style game. Made an impact from Day 1, was invited to the NTDP on the spot, and accepted. Selected in first round of WHL bantam draft in May, by Swift Current, but will go to Ann Arbor. Played last winter for Soldotna HS and the Alaska Wolves.5-1-6.

3. Nathan Davis, Mid-Am, 5-11/180 -- LC played last season for the Cleveland Barons Bantams. He's strong on his skates, handles the puck well, has a great shot, and is a physical, determined player. Great work ethic. A leader type. Top student, too. Going to NTDP. 4-4-8.

4. Tommy Fritsche, Mid-Am, 5-10/175 -- LW from Parma, Ohio played for the Cleveland Barons Bantams last season. Late '86 birthdate, so will likely add some size. Had a tremendous festival -- was totally on his game. Fritsche is very creative and knows where to go. He's also deceptively quick and has a very good sense of where he is, where he's going, and why. He slips around well, making him hard to defend. A smart player, in short. Named to all-festival team. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. Younger brother of Sarnia Sting (OHL) center Danny Fritsche. 4-8-12.

5. Patrick Kaleta, New York, 6-0/175 -- LC has good size, can skate, and is extremely physical -- he's a wrecking crew with skill. Just erases guys. Excellent pro potential. Started tournament strong, finished not quite as well. A competitor and leader. Played last year with St. Francis HS and the West Seneca Wings. Was invited to joint the NTDP at the festival but he'd already signed a contract to go major junior with the Peterborough Petes (OHL). Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 2-0-2.

6. Tyler Haskins, Rocky Mt., 6-1/165 -- RC from Sioux City Musketeers (USHL). Playing in the USHL as a 15-year-old no doubt had something to do with it, but Haskins was a man among boys out there. Goes to net hard, nice release. Was around the puck constantly. Created a ton of chances, but had a hard time finishing. Equally strong at both ends of ice. Great 1-on1 player. Excellent passer. Plays with passion and a nice edge. Won spot on Select 17 team going to the Czech Republic in late August. Was Guelph's 5th round pick in OHL draft, and was just at their camp.1-2-3.

7. Domenic Maiani, Michigan, 5-10/165 -- RC from HoneyBaked '86s was super involved at both ends of ice -- blocking shots, winning faceoffs, doing all the little things that are big. Maiani may not have the high end of some of his Michigan teammates (Porter, Lerg, et al), but was team's most effective all-around forward here. Will play for Chris Coury's Detroit Jr. Red Wings Midget AAA squad this season. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 2-3-5

8. Matt Kaiser, Minnesota, 5-11/155 -- RC flies and has a great internal compass. Can twist and turn and sharply reverse directions in the tightest of spaces. Lithe, athletic, and he has a great stick, too. Excellent in tight spaces.  Played for state champs Holy Angels last season. Going to NTDP. 3-2-5. 

9. Nick Coskren, Mass., 5-11/175 -- RC from Walpole, Mass. and St. Sebastian's had a terrific week. Not flashy at all, but does just about everything right. More than the sum of his parts. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 2-8-10.

10. Kevin Porter, Michigan, 5-10/175 -- Smooth skater -- and supremely skilled  Seemed to have a breakaway per game, but struggled to finish. Was totally snake-bit here. LC from Michigan Ice Dogs Midget AAA. Drafted by Saginaw (3rd round).  Going to NTDP. 1-0-1.

11. Michael Karwoski, New York, 5-5/125 -- Very small, but smart, clever, and very skilled. Plays with verve, imagination, and a passion for the game. Great poise. An exciting, fun player to watch.  Named to all-festival team. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. Will be playing for Apple Core this season. He's a late '86 -- born just three days before Christmas, so was possibly the youngest player in camp. Also a top-notch lacrosse player. 5-3-8.

12. Jacques Lamoureux, Dakota, 6-0/178 -- LC with size, skating ability, and a presence to his game. Plays for Grand Forks Central, but we expect he'll go far beyond North Dakota high school hockey. Is a 4.0 student. Finished among the scoring leaders with a 2-7-9 line, with five of those assists coming against Mid-Am. 

13. Chris Mueller, New York, 5-9/160 -- Played last year with Nichols School and Buffalo Saints 86. Works hard. Tough. Blocked shots. Worked extremely hard. Didn't score early but did at end. Dangerous in short-handed situations. Excellent shot. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. Played for the Nichols School and the Buffalo Saints '86s. 5-1-6. 

14. Brian Lerg, Michigan, 5-10/170 -- Quick, shifty LC from HoneyBaked Midgets with excellent scoring ability was frustrated that he couldn't bury it here. However, he never stopped competing. Going to NTDP. Also won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 1-1-1. . 

15. J.J. Cunningham, Southeast, 5-8/147 -- From Ashburn, Virginia and the Reston Raiders. A RC, Cunningham was one of the surprises here, an agile, explosive skater with good hands, a quick release, play-making ability, and a strong work ethic. Needs to play in a tougher league this season. He's a 12/8/86 birthdate so look for him to grow. 1-2-3.

16. Brandon Dubinsky, Pacific, 5-9/158 -- LW from Service HS and the Alaska All-Stars is always around the net, finishes well, and works hard every shift. He's grown over the past year, and it's added a dimension to his game. Fifth round pick of Portland in May's WHL bantam draft.3-2-5.

17. Patrick Galivan, Central, 5-10/160 -- Clever, small RW from Oak Park, Ill. and TI '86 team.  Named to all-festival team. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 6-2-8.

18. Travis Turnbull, Central, 5-11/168 -- RC from St. Louis Blues '86s. Good tools. Good upside. Son of former NHLer Perry Turnbull. Was London's 9th round pick in OHL draft. 2-3-5.

19. Seth Seidman, Mass., 6-1/180 -- RC from Milton, Mass. and Milton Academy. Awkward skater, but getting better. A big power forward, Seidman seemed to be pressing here, getting off his game a little. Going to NTDP. 0-2-2.

20. Peter Lenes, Dakota, 5-5/140 -- At-large player from Shelburne, Vermont and Champlain Valley HS. Small, but doesn't let it stop him. Just goes all out, all the time. Has speed; nice shot, too. Going to Tabor. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 4-3-7. 

21. William Parenteau, Minnesota, 5-10/175 -- RC played for Breck School last winter. Excellent skills, but didn't produce much in the way of points. This year's Minnesota team had several skilled players up front, but was nowhere near as deep as most years. Parenteau won a spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 1-1-2. 

22. Jordan LaVallee-Smotherman, Mass., 6-2/205 -- LW from Walpole Stars (EJHL) wasn't bad, but can play better and will have to do so consistently where he's going. Needs to keep working on his skills and his quickness. Looked to be heading to the NTDP in the spring, but changed his mind. Is going major junior with the Quebec Remparts (QMJHL) instead. 3-1-4.

23. John Carter, Michigan, 6-3/187 -- From HoneyBaked '86s. Right shot played off wing. Has size and good hands. If he gets to the point where he's able to impose his will on the game, he could be something. Had team's only goal in 1-1 tie against eventual gold-medal winner New York. Was Ottawa's 6th round pick in OHL draft. 1-2-3.

24. Jeff Prough, Michigan, 5-8/155 -- From Little Caesar's '86s. He's gritty and plays hard both ways. Is around the puck a lot and works hard for his scoring opportunities. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 3-1-4.

25. Gerry Pollastrone, Mass., 5-10/180 -- Speed is his game. A LW from Revere, Mass., Pollastrone played for Eaglebrook last winter and will be going to Salisbury this fall. 4-2-6.

26. Brandon Scero, Michigan, 6-0/190 -- Came out with a bang, getting Michigan going by scoring all his points in team's first two games (a hat trick in 10-2 drubbing of Southeast; then a 2g,1a game vs. Pacific). Was reported to be suffering from an injured groin. From HoneyBaked '86s. Was Sarnia's 5th round pick in OHL draft. 5-1-6. 

27. Chad Kolarik, Atlantic, 5-10/150 -- RC from Abington, Penn. and Deerfield Academy was a disappointment. An elite-level player, Kolarik only had one point in the festival's round-robin portion. Turned it on in 9th place game, attempting an enormous number of shots on goal in second half. A tremendous skater who can make passes at speed and can score, Kolarik needs to improve his play away from the puck to reach his considerable potential. He has to learn how to take a hit, stay on his feet and keep going. Will be going to the NTDP. Was Kingston's 6th round pick in OHL draft. 2-1-3. 

28. William Paukovich, Rocky Mt., 6-2/185 -- Very physical. Could be a pro someday. From Englewood, Col. Played for the Arapaho Midget AA squad. Has already verbally committed to Denver. That could be a ways down the road, though. He's pretty raw. Here, he was inconsistent. Has good hands, but was unable to do much around the net. May play for Billings (AWHL) this season. Was at the Tri-City Storm (USHL) camp last week. We think a year with a top-flight midget program would probably be best for now. Drafted in 7th round of WHL bantam draft by Medicine Hat. 1-0-1

29. Mark Rogers, New England, 6-2/188 -- Intriguing prospect. Excellent high-end potential. Has size, athleticism, skates well, but is very untutored, having played for Mt. Ararat HS in Maine. So this festival was a huge adjustment. If he is able to move to stronger competition and get top coaching he could really be something. He could be Tom Glavine -- baseball scouts are already onto him as he's a 16-year-old pitcher who already throws 90 MPH. 0-1-1.

30. Todd McIlrath, Michigan, 5-9/155 -- LC/LW from HoneyBaked '86s got a concussion vs. New York on Wed. It was on a hit from behind, and he stayed in game, but passed out in car later and was taken to the hospital. Missed last two days. Was Saginaw's 6th round pick in OHL draft. Was a star at last summer's Select 15 Festival, but his week here is one he'll probably want to forget. Going to NTDP. 0-0-0.

31. Patrick Mullen, Mid-Am, 5-9/150 --RW from Pittsburgh Hornets Bantams. Showed flashes but wasn't consistently noticeable. Really good hands, skates well, and can play physically. Just has to put it all together. Son of Joe Mullen, the best hockey player to ever come out of Manhattan. 2-1-3. 

32. Patrick Knowlton, Rocky Mt., 5-8/145 -- High-energy LW with skill. Good around net. Going to prep school at Trinity-Pawling this fall. From Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak Minors AAA. 2-2-4.

33. Steve Bandurski, Dakota, 6-1/170 -- Lanky RW was an at-large player from Michigan, having played last season for Compuware '86 team. Thinks game well and works hard. An excellent student. Drafted by Plymouth (15th round).

34. Ryan Gunderson, Southeast, 6-1/165 -- Tall, lanky RC with great stride, good hands, good release, and good overall offensive skills. Injured left clavicle in mid-tournament and will be out of action 6-8 weeks. At-large player from Mahtomedi (Minn.) HS. 1-0-1.

35. Dan Eves, Michigan, 6-0/185 -- Just a very solid two-way left-shot forward with size. Doesn't jump out at you, but is quietly effective. From HoneyBaked '86s. Was Windsor's 12th round pick in OHL draft. 0-0-0.

36. John Marshall, New York,, 6-3/194 -- Huge, intriguing RW from Perinton Blades, coached by Glenn Collins, the father of BC recruit Chris Collins. Marshall was quite inconsistent, but he also has a great upside. Gets around the ice well. Keep an eye on him -- he's very, very raw, but with time could be a player. Drafted by Plymouth (11th round). 2-1-3.

37. Matt Auffrey, Rocky Mt., 6-1/185 -- At-large player from New York state has a lot of potential but was not very good here. Uninvolved. Didn't win many 1-on-1 battles for the puck. Took unnecessary penalties. DQ'd for one game due to hitting-from-behind call. Played for Syracuse Jr. Crunch last year, on Robbie Schremp's powerhouse line. Was Kitchener's 3rd round pick in OHL draft. Going to NTDP. 0-1-1.

38. Phillip Axtell, Southeast, 6-5/235 -- Huge left-shot forward who also chipped in at D when injuries mounted. Made some nice passes and his decisions were sound. Can move well but then gets really slow. Of course, he's lugging the biggest body in the tournament and hasn't been raised playing against tough competition. Played for the Tri City Eagles and is a native of New Windsor, Maryland. Will be playing for the Marquette Electricians (Midget AAA) this winter. The change of climate will amaze him, and he's tall enough to keep his head above the snowdrifts. 1-3-4.

39. Steve Zalewski, New York, 6-0/185 -- LW from New Hartford HS in New Hartford, NY was consistently noticeable. Works hard in corners and along wall. Nice shot. He's also a good student -- some bosky boarding school should snap him up. 2-3-5.

40. Moises Gutierrez, Pacific, 6-3/193 -- RW from Anchorage and the Alaska All-Stars organization could be a force, but needs to add determination to his game. Should also play with a longer stick. Has the size and style of play to become a good power forward. Was a second-round pick in May's WHL bantam draft (by Kamloops). 0-2-2.

41. Dustin Fulton, Minnesota, 6-0/178 -- RC plays for Breck. Sees ice well. Good stick. 2-0-2. 

42. Tim Kennedy, New York, 5-11/160 -- LW with excellent skills. Broke wrist in Empire State Games tryouts two months ago. Started slowly, but, like his whole team, picked it up as NY marched to the gold.1-1-2.

43. Andrew Ohlinger, Central, 5-6/165 -- Small late '86 from Superior, Wisc. and the Superior Spartans showed skill and  a good sense of the game. 0-4-4.

44. Chad Costello, Central, 5-7/155 -- Right shot from Johnston, Iowa and the Des Moines Capitols is quick, and dangerous in offensive zone. 2-1-3.

45. Jeff Christiansen, Central, 6-0/185 -- RW from University School of Milwaukee. Solid contributor.. 

46. Matt Moreland, Dakota, 6-0/160 -- Plays for Grand Forks Central. Really picked up his play the last couple of days of tournament. 

47. Thomas Gorowsky, Minnesota, 5-11/185 --  RW from Centennial HS is skilled enough to have shown better here, but was solid nonetheless. 

48. Alex Berry, Mass., 6-1/175 -- RW from Danvers, Mass. and the Eaglebrook School has size, plays both ends, is an irritant to opponents, and can make a pass. Going to Gov. Dummer.  

49. Blake Martin, Pacific, 5-7/135 -- Center from Service HS and the Alaska All-Stars organization. Seemed bigger than 5'7" to this observer. Hard-nosed with better than average skill. Tenth round pick of Lethbridge in May's WHL bantam draft. Nov. '86 DOB. 2-0-2.

50. Taylor Bergeron, Dakota,  5-9/160 -- An at-large player from Milton, Vermont, where he played his high school hockey. He's a late '86. Worked hard. Showed some skill. Involved. 

 

Defensemen:

1. A.J. Thelen, Dakota, 6-3/190 -- LD who played for the Shattuck AA Midget team last winter. Drafted in 3rd round of WHL bantam draft by Prince Albert (in a can, of course). Going to NTDP. Big, physical, prototypical pro-style D-man. Good N-S, but needs work on lateral movement. 

2. John Vadnais, Minnesota, 5-11/180 -- RD who also played for Shattuck AA Midget team last winter combines good size with skating ability and puck-carrying skills. Drafted by Seattle in WHL bantam draft. Going to NTDP.

3. Dan McGoff, Mass., 5-10/170 -- RD from Charlestown, Mass. and Noble & Greenough. Excellent skater who can carry the puck. Good low center of gravity. Hard to knock off puck. Not big or small, but strong. He can move guys bigger than he from out in front of the net. Combines physical play with skill. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August.

4. Nate Hagemo, Minnesota, 5-11/175 -- RD from Holy Angels is another who has the puck on a string. Good hands. Played forward at last summer's 15 Festival. Has played D exclusively since then. We wouldn't move him back up front. Oct. '86 DOB. Is going to NTDP.

5. Jason DeSantis, Michigan, 5-10/160 -- RD from Honeybaked '86s. Was invited to NTDP after a couple of days of play here, and accepted. Moves puck smartly and efficiently. A heady, aware player. Named to all-festival team. Was Saginaw's 9th round pick in OHL draft.

6. Thomas Gerken, Mid-Am, 6-1/170 -- RD was best-skating D of his size. Excellent upside. Played for Compuware '86s last winter. Can play forward, too. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August.

7. Joe Grimaldi, New York, 6-0/170 -- Hard-nosed, physical, and mean right-shot D from New York Bobcats Jr. B. Skates well and is not afraid to take chances. Very determined. Game sense is OK. Was Windsor's 7th round pick in OHL draft. His work at festival won him a spot with the NTDP.  Named to all-festival team, too. 

8. Brett Bevis, Mass., 6-1/190 -- LD from Harvard, Mass. and Lawrence Academy was hampered by bad hand but had a very solid tournament. Has size and can skate. Is physically stronger than last year. Projects as a defensive D. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 

9. Nick Schaus, New York, 5-10/175 -- RD from St. Francis HS and the Buffalo Saints '86s. Excellent offensively, leading all D here with 3-2-5 line. He's tough, he can skate, he plays with an edge, and he can shoot the puck. Steady and reliable. Going to the Omaha Lancers (USHL), where he had a great camp. Was Kitchener's 8th round pick in OHL draft.

10. Anthony Aiello, Mass., 6-1/175 -- LD Braintree, Mass. and Thayer Academy had a hard time stringing together consistent games but when he was on he was very good. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August.

11. Jack Hillen, Minnesota, 5-10/170 -- LD from Holy Angels, the Minnesota state high school champs. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. 

12. Dan Marziani, Southeast, 6-3/190 -- RD from Schaumberg, Ill. and the Chicago Chill '86 team was Brampton's 2nd round pick in OHL draft and has always gotten a ton of attention due to his tools -- a 6'3" frame, skating ability, and size. However, he needs work on his strength and physical play -- he should dominate in corners and in front of his net, but he doesn't. However, he played a more highly-disciplined game here than we've ever seen him play anywhere before. Is realizing he doesn't have to do it all. Missed games #4 and #6 with a hip-pointer. High upside. 

13. Brett Motherwell, Michigan, 5-10/176 -- LD from Honeybaked '86s. Skates well with puck, and moves it smartly. Competes. Good offensively. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August. Will be playing for HoneyBaked midgets this season. 

14. Justin Johnston, Michigan, 6-0/160 -- LD from Honeybaked '86s may be moving up to Compuware (NAHL) this season. Doesn't wow in any one area, but is very effective overall. Was Barrie's 9th round pick in OHL draft.

15. Greg Battani, Minnesota, 5-10/170 -- LD from Benilde-St. Margaret's. Highly mobile, and with good hands. 

16. Cody Lampl, Rocky Mt., 5-8/130 -- Very skilled. Can take chances and get away with it. Moves puck in transition well. Great feet. Tough, too. From Ketchum, Idaho and the Sun Valley Junior Midget AA program. Looking at Pike's Peak, Dallas Midget AAA, and Billings Bulls (AWHL).  

17. Brendan Milnamow, New England, 6-2/170 -- LD from the Taft School -- he played JV last winter -- who is very raw, but has the tools to become a highly sought-after player. Was playing forward for the Connecticut Yankees '86 team as recently as 2000-01. Just needs to learn how to play D, and play against better players. 

18. William Carpenter, Michigan, 6-2/195 -- RD from Honeybaked '86s is a defensive defenseman. Keeps it simple. Quietly effective. An Oct. '86 birthdate and already 6'2", so he's going to just keep getting better. Was St. Mike's 9th round pick in OHL draft.

19. Mike VanWagner, Michigan, 6-1/180 --Played for the Traverse City Trojans, a weak level of play especially when compared to the HoneyBaked/Compuware/Caesar's crucible most Michigan kids come out of. However, VanWagner has size and skates very well. Doesn't know how to get involved physically, though. Needs to play at a higher level to realize his potential. Reportedly, he'll be playing for HoneyBaked Midgets this season. 

20. Chase Ryan, Central, 6-1/180 -- RD from Algonquin, Ill. and the Chill '86s has a Nov. ' 86 DOB so was nearly 11 months younger than the oldest players here. He'll grown more, while his skills will keep developing. A bit of a sleeper. Was Saginaw's 12th round pick in OHL draft.

21. Jesse Downey, Minnesota, 6-2/175 -- RD from Silver Bay HS. Skates well for size. 

22. Ian Goodwin, Southeast, 5-8/146 -- LD from Cooper City, Florida and the Florida Jr. Panthers had a nice week. Highly mobile and moved puck smartly. Will be going to prep school (Canterbury.).

23. Kevin Roeder, Central, 5-10/175 -- RD from Glenview, Ill. and New Trier HS. Physical and rugged. Totally upended New England forward Mark Rogers in center ice during Wed. game. Steady, physical, smart, reads play well, and has poise.

24. John Dvorak, Dakota, 6-0/185 -- RD from Grand Forks Central. Good size. OK skills. Solid defensive D.

25. Brendan Olinyk, Central, 6-0/160 -- LD from Wisconsin Rapids, Wisc. and Lincoln HS. Just did his job. Scored a nice short-handed goal. Showed poise with puck.

26. Raymond Macias, Pacific, 6-1/185 -- RD is big already, but, as a late '86 birthdate, may grow more. Good skater for size. From Long Beach, Cal. and the LA Junior Kings.  

27. Josh Duncan, Minnesota, 5-11/186 -- RD from Rochester Lourdes HS.

28. Adam Blanchette, New England, 6-2/185 -- RD from Avon Old Farms. 

29. Chris Frank, Pacific, 6-1/210 -- LD From Lynwood, Wash. and the Washington Totems played tournament with a blown-out ACL. Didn't do much. Still, he's someone to keep on list. He's big, tough, and nasty.  

30. Chris Johnson, Southeast, 6-0/175 -- LD was an at-large player from Minnesota. Plays for Duluth East HS. Good all-around skills. Top student. 

31. Alan Dorich, Central, 6-1/175 -- RD from Orland Park,  Ill. and TI '86s. Top student. Was Guelph's 12th round pick in OHL draft.

32. Frank Berry, Atlantic, 6-0/160 -- RD from Allentown, Penn. and the Lehigh Valley Comets Midget AA. Top student.

33. Paul Ferraro, Rocky Mt., 5-11/165 -- At-large player from Pleasantville, NY and the Brewster Bulldogs Midgets. Plays hard, and has a laser of a shot. A bit of a project, but definitely ready for a higher level of play this season. 

 

Goaltenders:

1. Chris Carlson, Central, 5-10/158 -- Plays with great confidence stemming, no doubt, from an abundance of skill.  Named to all-festival team. Going to NTDP.  Named to all-festival team. 

2. Jeff Lerg, Michigan, 5-5/140 -- A battler. Really competes. Great athlete. Technically sound. Trusts his angles. Mentally strong. Played for HoneyBaked Midgets last winter. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August.

3. Corey Schneider, Mass., 6-2/185 --- Plays with poise and is very athletic for a 6'2" kid. Uses his size well. From Marblehead, Mass. and Andover Academy. 

4. Tim Higbee, Rocky Mt., 5-10/172 -- Very athletic. Plays position well. Excellent concentration. Works hard. Very good athletically. Tailed off a bit at end. Hung out to dry in second half of Michigan game. From Steamboat Springs, Col. Played for the Steamboat Braves Midget AA team last winter. Will be going to the UP to play for the Marquette Electricians this season. 

5. Andrew Batson, Dakota, 5-10/165 -- Very sound technically. Very intelligent. Good on angles. Good reflexes. At-large kid from Michigan. Played in Little Caesar's organization. Won spot on Select 17 team going to Czech Republic in late August.

6. Jordan Pearce, Pacific, 6-0/175 -- Plays a quiet, effective game. Positioning is good. Stays on feet well. Played for Service HS -- he's a 4.0 student -- and the Alaska All-Stars organization.. Oct. '86 DOB. Going to NTDP.

7. Kyle Gover, Rocky Mt., 5-4/135 -- Acrobatic, circus goalie. Excellent all week. Lifted his game to a higher level than anyone expected. Fun to watch. Battles, too. Very good on angles. 5'4", but plays like he's bigger. Sticks his chest right out there, like Mike Richter. From Sandy, Utah and Pikes Peak Bantams. Late '86 DOB. 

8. Ian Keserich, Mid-Am,  6-1/165 --Butterfly goalie from Parma, Ohio and Cleveland Barons Bantams. Used size and upper body well. good feet for his size and age. Didn't get much help from teammates in playoff blowout, which skewed his stats. Was Sudbury's 7th round pick in OHL draft.

9. Jason Mardinly, Atl., 5-11/131 -- Very poised, a pleasant surprise. From New Jersey Legion Midget AAA. 

10. Daniel Ramirez, New York, 5-8/160 -- Inconsistent. Came up with some really big saves, and other times didn't. Nonetheless, for an unheralded goalie, he definitely made his mark. Played for the Perinton Blades last winter. 

 

7/31/02

Heinbuck Leaves SLU for NHL Scouting Position

St. Lawrence assistant coach Jay Heinbuck will be leaving the Saints' staff for a full-time scouting position with the New York Islanders.

Heinbuck has been on Joe Marsh's staff at St. Lawrence since 1992. A 1986 graduate of Northeastern University, Heinbuck set a school single-season record with 70 points his senior season. Also, NU won two of its four Beanpot crowns during Heinbuck's career there. 

Heinbuck was part of the Huskies recruiting class that included defenseman Jim Madigan, with whom Heinbuck will be working on the Islanders scouting staff.  

Heinbuck's position will be taken by alum Bob Prier, a forward from Nepean, Ont. who skated for the Saints from '95-99. Prier was an assistant at Princeton last year and, in 2000-01, at Denver. Returning assistant Chris Wells will move up.

 

7/31/02

Clarkson Still Seeking New Assistant

With time running out on summer, the latest top candidate -- yes, we know there has been a batch so far -- for the Clarkson assistant's post is Fred Parker, a Tier II coach for years (and a very funny man, too). This past season, Parker coached the Ottawa Jr. Senators (CJAHL), finishing the regular season 31-14-10 and leading his team to the National Junior A playoffs.

At the close of the season, Parker, as well as his three assistants and director of hockey operations Lou Nistico, resigned en masse from the Senators. We do not know why. Nistico immediately moved over to the Gloucester Rangers organization.

The new coach at Ottawa is Rick Ladouceur.  

Update 8/1: Parker got the Clarkson job. 

 

7/30/02

Two for UNH 

Goaltender Kevin Regan of St. Sebastian's, the defending New England prep champions; and forward Dan Travis of Deerfield Academy have committed to the University of New Hampshire.

-- Regan, who'll be a senior at St. Seb's this year, is a 6'1", 190 lb. native of South Boston, Mass. A 7/25/84 birthdate, he'll play the 2003-04 season in juniors and then join UNH the following season (after Michael Ayers graduates). 

Regan, who backed up Dave Caciolla during his sophomore year at St. Seb's, stepped into the #1 role last season and came up big for the Arrows. Regan is a positional goalie -- not flashy at all. He just lets the puck hit him squarely. He plays big -- and he is big. He's also extremely economical in his movements.

At the US Select 17 Festival in St. Cloud, Minn. a year ago, Regan didn't allow a single goal until the bronze medal game, when a pass hit a player's skate and deflected past him, breaking his shutout streak. His performance there won him a slot on the U.S. Select Under-18 team that went overseas that August. 

-- Travis, a RW who'll be a senior at Deerfield this year, is 6'3", 200 lbs. and a son of the Granite State, hailing from Wilton, NH , a quiet town about 20 miles west of Nashua. An 11/26/83 birthdate, Travis, who will arrive at UNH in the fall of 2003, is a big strong power forward type who should be able to fill the hole left when Eddie Caron transferred to Yale. 

Travis will be at UNH in the fall of 2003. He'll join a class that includes Wexford (OPJHL) LW Dan Winnick; Coquitlam (BCHL) RW Brett Hemingway; and Des Moines (USHL) goaltender A.J. Bucchino.

 

7/29/02

BU Lands Top Prep D

St. Sebastian's School left-shot D Sean Sullivan, who's going into his senior season,  has committed to Boston University. 

Sullivan, who is 5'11" and 170 lbs., is a 3/29/84 birthdate from Braintree, Mass. He's quick, skates well, has a good stick, and a strong sense of the game. He can jump-start the offense. He can skate with the puck. He's very heady in his own end. In essence, he's more than the sum of his parts. While he's not the biggest or meanest D around, he may be one of the smartest. There are really no obvious weakness to his game. He needs to get a little stronger, perhaps, but then so do most kids heading into their senior year at the high school level.  

Sullivan's other final choice reportedly was Yale. Other Ivies had also been been part of the picture at one time or another.

Sullivan joins current teammate Kenny Roche, a RW, and NY Apple Core d-man Kevin Schaeffer in the group that will arrive at Babcock St. in the fall of 2003.

 

7/29/02

Select 16 Ranking Coming

The ranking from the US Select 16 Festival will be published here on Wednesday (tomorrow) or Thursday. Thank you for your patience.

 

7/27/02

Smaby To Fighting Sioux

6'4", 185 lb. defesneman Matt Smaby, who will be entering his senior year at Shattuck-St. Mary's this season, has made a verbal commitment to the University of North Dakota for the fall of 2003. 

Smaby will enter UND along with forwards Brady Murray and Chris Porter, both former Shattuck players. Another Shattuck player, Zach Parisé, arrives at UND this fall. 

Smaby, a rugged, physical, pro-type defenseman, is an 11/30/84 DOB who will be eligible for next year's draft only if he opts in. 

In 65 games for Shattuck, Smaby had a 7-18-25 line -- and a team-leading 134 pims. 

-- In other recruiting news, 6'1", 180 lb RW Joe Cooper of the St. Michael's Buzzers (OPJHL) has committed to Miami for 2003-04. Cooper, a 6/7/85 birthdate, is a physical winger who will create space for others. Last winter, he played 49 games with the Buzzers and had a 20-27-47 line with 103 pims. Cooper also had offers from Cornell, Merrimack, Union, and Western Michigan. 

 

7/22/02

Tech Recruit Magers Zapped by Clearinghouse

Marty Magers, who was to be Michigan Tech's incoming freshman goaltender this season, has received a thumbs-down from the NCAA Clearinghouse, so will instead be going major junior with Owen Sound (OHL). 

Owen Sound drafted Magers out of Fort Erie Jr. B two years ago, taking him as a 19th round flier after the goalie indicated he was taking the NCAA route. Magers is from Plainfield, Ill. and came up through the Team Illinois system. He opted for Jr. B in Ontario after not making the TI midget squad.

Magers played for the Omaha Lancers (USHL) last season and led the league with a 1.62 gaa and .927 save percentage. He had ten shutouts in 30 starts. At last month's NHL draft, Magers was selected in the fourth round (121st overall) by the Buffalo Sabres.

Taking Magers' slot on Tech's roster is Ricky Cazares who, in 45 games with the Danville Wings (NAHL) this season, posted a 2.55 gaa and .906 save percentage. Michigan State wanted Cazares but was unable to offer him scholarship money, so Cazares, who had yet to commit, was planning to join the Spartans as a walk-on this fall. 

Now, at Michigan Tech, he'll get the scholarship earmarked for Magers. 

Cazares is a native of San Jose, Cal., where he played for the NORCAL Rep Midget AA team before moving to Illinois in 1999 and joining the Team Illinois Midget AAA team. This past season was his second in Danville. He's 5'11", 175 lbs and is a 12/18/81 birthdate.

 

7/22/02

Lidster Next Clarkson Assistant?

Could Doug Lidster, an All-America at Colorado College who went on to a 15-year NHL career, become the top assistant at Clarkson? Sounds a little strange, but it's reported to be a distinct possibility 

A few weeks ago it looked like Clarkson would be hiring Marty Williamson to be Mark Morris'  top assistant. When Williamson decided instead to stay in his native Ontario and serve as GM/head coach of the Aurora Tigers (OPJHL), it appeared that the job might go to either Chris DiPiero, the head coach of the St. Michael's Buzzers (OPJHL), or Lindsay Hofford, an associate head coach with the OHL's London Knights.  

Now, it looks like it may be Lidster, 41, a Kamloops, BC native who, back in the day, played Tier II with the Kamloops Rockets (BCHL) before heading to CC. There, he played for Jeff Sauer and then, in his final year, Mike Bertsch. 

Lidster retired from the NHL after the '98-99 season. His last club was the Dallas Stars, the winners of the Stanley Cup that season.

 

7/22/02

Christie Chooses Miami 

Wexford Raiders LC Matt Christie has committed to Miami University for the fall of 2003. Christie, also sought after by Michigan State, Notre Dame, Maine, Ohio State and others, was a member of the Ontario Under-17 Team last winter. A 2/22/85 birthdate, Christie was sixth in scoring in the Provincial League's South Division with a 33-39-72 line. He will be entering college as a true freshman.

Christie, who is 5'11", and 185 lbs., has good vision, playmaking skills, and the ability to make players around him better. His hands are good, as is his touch around the net. While not a burner, he is strong on his skates, with a good stride. 

Right now, it's unclear where Christie will be playing next season. He had a one-year deal with Wexford, which is rare in Canadian Tier II, and is thus a free agent of sorts right now. Christie and his family looked into the USHL, specifically the Chicago Steel, but have decided to stay home in Ontario. Look for Christie to sign on with either Milton, Aurora, or St. Mike's. 

Christie has an uncle who lives in Cincinnati, which played a role in his decision. In addition, he wished to go to a slightly smaller school than the aforementioned Big Ten schools. 

 

7/22/02

Phenomenal in Pfaffenhofen 

Speaking of Miami, former Redskins center Jason Deskins notched nine points (4g,5a) as the U.S. National Roller Hockey team pasted Great Britain, 19-0, in Pfaffenhofen, Germany yesterday. 

This, however, was far from the most lopsided score yesterday. 

Try this one on for size: Sweden 58, Chile 0. We're sending the tape to Jacques Lemaire.  

In other action, it was: Germany 27, Argentina 1; Slovakia 9, Japan 5 (a nail-biter!); Hungary 8, Brazil 6 (another nail-biter!); Finland 14, Slovenia 2; and Czech Republic 26, Belgium 6. On Saturday night, Germany edged Belgium 37-1. 

Update: Today, the U.S. downed New Zealand, 27-2. Chicago Freeze (NAHL) center Pat Lee scored eight goals. Defenseman Ernie Hartlieb had a ten-point game (4g,6a).

 

7/20/02

Emperors of the Empire State 

Rochester, NY -- USA Hockey's Select 16 Festival wound up on Friday with New York, behind a three-point effort from Ian Thomas (1g,2a) beating Central, 4-3, to take the gold. In the bronze medal game, Massachusetts got an OT goal by Chris Bourque (his second goal of the game), to edge Minnesota, 4-3.  

The all festival team consisted of goaltender Chris Carlson (Central); defensemen Joe Grimaldi (NY) and Jason DeSantis (Michigan); and forwards Patrick Galivan (Central); Tom Fritsche (Mid-Am); and Michael Karwoski (NY). 

Mass., behind defenseman Dan McGoff and the aforementioned Bourque, went 5-1-0 in the tournament, took the bronze, and didn't have a player on the all-festival team. Bourque, we believe, was KO'd from all-festival consideration by a hitting-from-behind call. 

We'll have more on the Select 16 Festival later this week. 

 

7/20/02

U.S. Names Squad for Select 16 Five Nations Tournament

At the close of the tournament, the squad that will represent the U.S. in the Five Nations Tournament in late August was chosen. Due to the tournament's late starting date, which conflicts with orientation and the starting date of the Ann Arbor public school system, a handful of NTDP-bound players were automatically removed from consideration. 

The squad, coached by Paul Cannata and assisted by Troy Jutting, consists of:

Goaltenders: Andrew Batson (Dakota) and Jeff Lerg (Mich.).

Defensemen: Anthony Aiello (Mass.); Brett Bevis (Mass.); Thomas Gerken (Mid-Am); Jack Hillen (Minn.), Dan McGoff (Mass.); and Brett Motherwell (Mich.). 

Forwards: Chris Bourque (Mass.); Nick Coskren (Mass.); Tom Fritsche (Mid-Am); Patrick Galivan (Central); Tyler Haskins (Rocky Mt.); Patrick Kaleta (NY); Michael Karwoski (NY); Peter Lenes (Dakota); Brian Lerg (Mich.); Domenec Maiani (Mich.); Chris Mueller (NY); William Parenteau (Minn.); and Jeff Prough (Mich.).

 

7/19/02

Three for the NTDP

Three players were selected from the Select 16 Festival for this season's U.S. National Team Development Program. They are: 

-- Bill Smith, a 5'11", 180 lb. left-shot center from the Alaska Wolves and Soldotna (AK) HS. A power forward, Smith plays both physically and with skill. The #1 American selected in May's WHL Bantam Draft (first round, 18th overall, by Swift Current), he's an 8/10/86 birthdate. 

-- Jason DeSantis, a 5'10", 186 lb. RD from Warren, Mich. and the HoneyBaked '86s. DeSantis, highly mobile and good with the puck, is a 3/9/86 DOB. 

--Joe Grimaldi, a 6'0", 170 lb. RD from Ronkonkoma, NY and the New York Bobcats Jr. B. A rugged, feisty, hard-nosed type of D, Grimaldi is a 8/23/86 DOB. 

 

7/19/02

A Blast from the Past

The head coach of this year's U.S. National Junior Team will be Lou Vairo

Vairo has had extensive experience coaching the U.S. Junior squad, though exclusively in the old days. Twenty-five years ago, Vairo was an assistant during the inaugural world junior championship. Held in 1977 in what was then Czechoslovakia, the U.S. finished 7th that year with a 1-5-1 record. Vairo was then was named head coach of the U.S. junior team from 1979-82. During those years, the U.S. finished 2-3-0 (6th); 1-3-1 (7th); 2-3-0 (6th); and 2-5-0 (6th)  

Vairo, the director of special projects for USA Hockey since 1992, also coached the 1984 U.S. Olympic team to a seventh place finish at the 1984 Olympic Games in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. For the past three springs, Vairo has served as head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team, and helped the U.S. to a fourth-place finish in 2001.  

Assisting Vairo at the junior team training camp at Lake Placid Aug. 1-10 will be River City Lancers (USHL) head coach Mike Hastings; Montreal Canadiens scout Gordie Roberts; Boston College assistant coach Ron Rolston; and former CC and Wisconsin head coach Jeff Sauer. Whether or not any of the above four will be assistants when the WJC gets underway on Dec. 26 in Halifax, Nova Scotia remains to be determined. No assistants have been named yet. 

 

7/18/02

Musical Chairs Don't Stop  

Tom Carroll, longtime Notre Dame assistant and former Des Moines Bucanneers (USHL) head coach, will be the new head coach at New England College (Henniker, NH -- ECAC East), filling the slot vacated when Scott Borek joined Dick Umile's staff at the University of New Hampshire... Fred Harbinson, an assistant at Sioux City (USHL) who was head coach when the Fernie Ghostriders won the AWHL title a couple of years ago, has been named an assistant at St. Cloud State. The position opened when Doc Del Castillo was hired at UNO a few weeks ago... Derek Lalonde, an assistant at Hamilton College, will be moving to Ferris State and an assistant's position on the staff of Bob Daniels. He'll be filling the opening created when Jeff Blaishill departed for Miami-Ohio... Brown assistant coach Steve King will be leaving his position at his alma mater, reportedly for a job outside hockey. Look for an announcement on a replacement soon... St. Anselm's College has reportedly narrowed their list of candidates to Dave Smith, the 33-year-old former Ohio State centerman who has been an assistant at Miami-Ohio and Bowling Green since retiring from pro hockey; and Kevin Houle, 38, a big winger from Acton, Mass. who played at Boston College from '82-86, and has been working in recent years as an assistant to his old BC classmate Bob Emery at Plattsburgh State.  

 

7/18/02

Meloche First Recruit of Paluch Era 

The first recruit of the Scott Paluch era at Bowling Green is 5'10, 175 lb. RW Rich Meloche of the Milton Merchants (OPJHL). 

In 48 games with Milton last winter, Meloche posted a team-leading 33-36-69 line to lead his team in scoring as a 16-year-old. A 1/17/85 birthdate, he'll enter BGSU as a true freshman.

Meloche is a hard worker with a real knack around the net.   

 

7/17/02

Talkin' 'Bout My Generation

It's official now -- 6'0", 175 lb. New England Junior Coyotes (EJHL) RW Mark McCutcheon will be headed to the Cornell Big Red in the fall of 2003. McCutcheon is the son of Brian McCutcheon, a center on the great Big Red teams of '68-71 (78-7 combined won-lost record) and head coach at his alma mater from '87-95.

McCutcheon is a 5-21-84 birthdate and finished among the EJHL's top scorers last season. He'll return to the Coyotes for the upcoming season, where he hopes to gain strength and step in at Cornell as an impact freshman.

All along, Cornell had wanted McCutcheon for the fall of 2003, but the winger's strong start last season led some schools to strongly consider him for 2002. This put Cornell in a bind because, while they really liked him, they were also all done with forwards for the upcoming season. Meanwhile, UNH was going after McCutcheon hard. UMass was really interested, too. And CC and Michigan State were talking. 

In the end, though, the biggest competition for McCutcheon came from UNH -- but Cornell wound up with their man anyway.

 

7/13/02

Scratch Miller, Add Lundberg

Boston University defenseman Bryan Miller will miss the U.S. National Junior Camp Aug.1-11. His place on the camp roster will be taken by Providence College defenseman Eric Lundberg.

Miller is recovering from a shoulder operation.

  

7/12/02

Coughlin, Kaiser to NTDP

6'2", 209 lb. RW Kevin Coughlin of Cushing Academy and South Boston, Mass. will be playing his senior year with the U.S. National Team Development Program. Coughlin, a 4/23/85 birthdate, had a 21-27-48 line in 34 games at Cushing Academy last season. He's a prototypical power forward who will nicely complement the Under-18 Team forwards, who as a group lack size up front.  

Also joining the NTDP is '86 forward Matt Kaiser of Bloomington, Minn. Kaiser, a 5'10", 165 lb. forward who played for Holy Angels, winners of the Minnesota state high school championship last March, has good stick and skating skills, and a head for the game. Like many his age, needs to become physically stronger. 

 

7/12/02

Standing Tall Down East

The National Hockey Training Center Prep/Junior camp concluded yesterday in Gorham, Maine. Our top two prospects were defensemen Paul Baier and Michael Stuart, both of whom have strong DI/pro potential. 

Baier, who has played the last couple of seasons at St. George's, a Div. II prep school in Rhode Island, is a 6'2", 185 lb. RD who will be transferring to Deerfield, where he'll be a repeat junior. Baier really stood out here. He has size and uses it. He's a smooth skater. He carries and passes the puck well. He uses his head. If he progresses at a reasonable rate, Baier, a native of North Kingston, RI, will be a highly sought-after Div. I recruit for the fall of '04 and is someone the pro scouts will be closely watching right away. He's a 2/2/85 birthdate.

Another top prospect here in Maine -- though a couple years younger -- was Stuart, an '87 from Rome, NY who's going to the St. Paul's School this fall. Stuart, a RD who is 6'2" or so, not only has size, but has quick feet and a good stick, too. In the game we watched, Stuart, the youngest player on the ice, stood out, playing with assurance and poise beyond his years. He's a 2/16/87 DOB. 

The top forward we saw was 5'8", 155 lb. Casey Ftorek, whose skating -- his first step, in particular -- seems improved. Ftorek's game revolves around his acute sense of where to go, when to go, and -- puck or no puck -- what to do when he gets there. He's got the knack, in other words. Fun to watch, too. Ftorek will be returning to Taft for his senior year this fall.

 

7/11/02

Homeboy

Northern Michigan's first commitment under the Walt Kyle regime is Marquette's own Robert Lehtinen. A 5'11", 175 lb. left-shot D, Lehtinen played midgets for the hometown Marquette Electricians before going to Waterloo (USHL) this past season. Lehtinen, who has strong offensive skills -- he played both forward and D with the Electricians and at various U.S. select camps -- will be playing for Waterloo once again this season. Last season, in 60 games, Lehtinen had an 8-12-20 line with 40 pims. He's a 4/24/83 birthdate.... It appears that the St. Cloud assistant's job is down to either Fred Harbinson, an assistant at Sioux City (USHL) who was head coach when  Fernie won the AWHL title a couple of years ago; and former St. Cloud defenseman Andy Vicari, a '98 grad now an assistant coach with the Danville Wings (NAHL).... Jim McKenzie, an '84 out of Woodbury, Minn. and Hill-Murray HS who started last season with the NTDP before being moved on to the Green Bay Gamblers, will get a shot this season with the Sioux Falls Stampede, head coach/GM Tony  Gasparini having picked him up for future considerations. McKenzie, at 6'2", 205 lbs., gives the smallish-up-front Stampede a grinder type....

 

7/11/02

Spiderman

In our Select 17 rankings last week, we noted that 5'9", 192 lb. Massachusetts defenseman Bret Tyler, who last year was selected for the team that went overseas, "never really got into a groove" in St. Cloud. Well, unbeknownst to us at the time, there was a reason. During his team's first game, Tyler's leg swelled up painfully, and he had to stop playing. It was assumed that the d-man had taken a shot during morning practice, but a trip to the ER revealed no broken bones. However, the following morning things had grown worse. Tyler, who plays for the Boston Jr. Bruins (EJHL), had a fever of 103 degrees, a grotesquely puffed-up ankle and swelling right up to his knee. A second trip to the ER was taken. This time, a blood test revealed he had cellulitis, quite possibly from a spider or insect bite. Dr. Jon Schuster, who played at Harvard in the mid-70s and whose son Jacob was also on the Mass team, recognized the unusual symptoms first. (Readers of the USHR may recall that Schuster was on hand last winter during a Lawrence Academy game when Brett Bevis had his wrist skated over. In that case, Schuster helped stanch the blood flow while a helicopter was arranged to take Bevis to Children's Hospital in Boston.) Anyway, getting back to last week, it was recommended that Tyler return home to Massachusetts. However, he didn't want to. Instead, he was given antibiotics intravenously, and was even seen at the rink with an IV needle handing out of his arm, waiting for his next treatment. After missing three games, Tyler was back playing, though in serious pain. After Wednesday's game, Dr. Schuster drained a large amount of pus from the defenseman's leg. Needless to say, he wasn't his usual self. We thought he looked slow, which, of course, he was. But at least now we know why.

Want to see a nasty picture of cellulitis? Click here.

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7/9/02

Draft Ramblings

In last month's NHL draft, the majority of U.S.-born players selected came, as usual, from three state as Massachusetts led the way with 14, followed by Minnesota with 11, and Michigan with nine. New York had four, while another 13 states had between one and three. 

The system the majority of the U.S. drafted players came up through -- and we're excluding the NTDP, USHL, college, etc.-- are as follows:

New England Prep Schools: 11 * (Whitney, Higgins, Morris, McConnell, R. Murphy, Pietrasiak, Hafner, Lannon, Flynn, Toffey, Hutchins)

Minnesota High Schools: 11 (Ballard, Tallackson, Erickson, Adams, Gilbert, Sertich, Maiser, Atherton, Taylor, Conboy, Gens)

Michigan full-season bantam/midget programs: 9 ** (Slater, Falardeau, Globke, Greene, Lee, Genovy, M. Walsh, Wisniewski, Helminen) 

Eastern Junior Hockey League: 5 *** (Nystrom, Lane, Lundberg, LaLiberte, Mauldin)

Massachusetts High Schools: 5 (Spang, Callahan, T. Walsh, Havern, Collins).

Notes: 
* PGs are excluded
** Wth three players apiece, let's not forget Illinois (Jones, Magers, Grumet-Morris), Pennsylvania (Guenin, Zeiler, Labrosse); and Missouri (Janssen, McKenna, Stastny).  
*** Must have a full season in EJHL while still in high school. In other words, no PGs.  

As for players taken in the top half of the draft, Michigan led the way, with seven of their nine selected in the top 50%. If you throw TI, Chicago Chill, and the Pittsburgh Hornets into the mix, the numbers become 11 out of 15.

The EJHL had four of their five selected in the top half; Minnesota high schools had six of 11; New England Preps four of 11; and Mass. high schools two of five. 

Of the 60 Americans selected in the draft, 31 were forwards, 23 were d-men, and six were goaltenders. 

What do all the above facts mean? Well, that's a topic worthy of a 100,0000 word treatise. Suffice it to say, most people will interpret the above in a way that promotes their agenda. 

As long as we're on that subject, please allow us a little shameless self promotion by recalling the USHR.DotComs team that went to Prospects in the spring of 1999 and 2000. From those two teams came first-round picks Ryan Whitney and Mike Morris. Other drafted DotComs were Jeff Genovy, Ryan Murphy, Rob Flynn, and Ned Havern. DotComs drafted last year included Noah Welch, Cody McCormick, and Colin FitzRandolph. The DotComs team was restricted to Americans, though we welcomed Canadian First Nation members such as McCormick,  FYI: First Nation members such as McCormick, of the Chippewas of the Thames (of London, Ontario), are eligible to play internationally for whichever country they want, mainly because they were here long before there was a US or a Canada. 

 

7/9/02

The Rest of the Story 

USA Hockey's initial press release on the coaching changes at the NTDP mentioned that John Hamre, an assistant to Moe Mantha with the Under-17 team for the past two years, is moving back to his native Minnesota to gain head coaching experience, but didn't say where. 

Hamre will be at the Blake School, where he takes over for Jeff Lindquist, who, after 13 years at the Minneapolis private school, has moved on to take over the head job at Bloomington-Jefferson that had been held for the past 28 years by Tom Saterdalen, who retired at the close of this year's state high school tournament..  

Hamre, an assistant coach with the Dayton Bombers (ECHL), Alaska-Anchorage, Princeton, and Yale before coming to the NTDP, was also a video assistant for Tim Taylor with the 1994 U.S. Olympic team.

Hamre will also be a math teacher at the school while working on his Ph.D. in Educational Policy from the University of Minnesota. He already has a master's degree in business administration from the university. 

Blake plays in Minnesota's strongest Class A section, along with Breck, Benilde-St.Margaret's, and Totino Grace. 

 

7/8/02

Not So Fast 

Contrary to what we reported on June 28th, Clarkson is not all set for the upcoming season, as Marty Williamson has, for personal reasons, turned down Mark Morris' offer to be the Golden Knights' top assistant. 

Instead, Williamson will stay put and serve as GM/head coach of the Aurora Tigers of the Ontario Provincial League. A veteran of the league, Williamson has also coached at Milton and Newmarket. 

The top two names we're now hearing in connection with the Clarkson job are Chris DiPiero, the head coach of the St. Michael's Buzzers (OPJHL), and Lindsay Hofford of the OHL's London Knights. Hofford, an associate head coach with the Knights, was demoted from the top job when team president Dale Hunter (20 NHL seasons; zero Lady Byng trophies) took over behind the bench last November. Fourteen months earlier, in Sept. 2000, Hofford, then a rookie head coach with London, sent out one of his players, Ryan Adams, with two seconds left in a pre-season game vs. the Sarnia Sting. Adams proceeded to attack a Sarnia player, breaking his nose, a "questionable substitution" that resulted in a 12-game suspension for Hofford. 

Clarkson's second assistant, as we mentioned, will be Jason Lammers, who'll be back for his second tour of duty under Morris, having served as an assistant for the Golden Knights in 2000-01 before joining Mark Taylor at Hobart College last season.  

Quinnipiac has a new/old assistant in Scott Robson, who both played for and served as an assistant for head coach Rand Pecknold before going on to coach in the EJHL the last few seasons, first as an assistant to Andy Heinze with the Valley Jr. Warriors and then as the head guy with the Bay State Breakers. 

 

7/5/02

 
Select 17 Standouts

Here are the players we felt stood out at last week's Select 17 Festival in St. Cloud, Minn. The tournament, as you may have heard, was won by Central 1-0 over Michigan, the second consecutive year the '85s from those two districts met in the finals (Michigan won last year, 5-3). Central, coached by Chicago Steel (USHL) head coach Steve Richmond, featured as deep a group of d-men as we've ever seen on a Select 17 Festival team. Also worth noting is that this Central age group ('85s) has six players who were with the NTDP last season, and thus ineligible to play in last weeks festival. We're talking here about goaltenders Alvaro Montoya and Gerald Coleman, defensemen Ryan Suter and Jeff Likens; and forwards Mike Bartlett, Mike Brown, and Jake Dowell. Put those kids in with the group that won the gold in St. Cloud and you have one scary team. Has Central overtaken Mass., Michigan, or Minnesota in terms of player development? Those questions can't be answered until a few years more have passed, but it's certainly food for thought. 

Anyway, in the ranking below we give the most weight to actual performance at the festival, but we don't totally disregard future potential, either. If a players performance is significantly hurt by injury and we are aware of it, we will mention it. Finally, remember that, as good as the players are at these things, it's still summer hockey. We've all seen kids who are just not as good in teh summer as winter, which is OK. Winter is when the games count! 

Note:  The rankings below reflect the views of the U.S. Hockey Report only. We we have neither the time nor inclination to answer letters of complaint about individual player rankings, mainly due to the declining level of discourse we're seeing in today's world. However, we will read them, and, if we learn something we don't know, that's a good thing. If you must write, please don't tell us about how many goals a certain player had (chances are it wouldn't affect the ranking anyway) without also telling us how many goals, assists, etc. that each and every player in the whole tournament had. Numbers are meaningless without context and, for reasons of their own, USA Hockey chose this year not to provide a list of of scoring and goaltending leaders. As odd as this practice is, it's their tournament. Complaints over this practice would best be directed to USA Hockey. In the meantime, we just go by what our eyes tell us. Thank you for your understanding.. 

 

Forwards:

1. Brian McGuirk, Mass., 6-0/181 -- Played hard, and very, very well, combining speed and tenacity more effectively than any other player here. Dominated in a couple of games. Just plain competes and is physical. Plows over kids when he's not using his speed. Hands improving year-by year. Will either return to Gov. Dummer or go to NTDP. Named to team going overseas, just as he was last year.    

2. Drew Stafford, Minn., 6-2/196 -- Excellent power forward from Shattuck-St. Mary's, where he will be returning for the upcoming season. Has size and strength, battles in all zones, takes the puck to the net. Good pro prospect. Named to team going to Czech Republic. A late '85 birthdate.

3. Aaron Bader, Dakota, 6-0/195 -- Not quite as dominant as last year, but still very good. Big strong power forward. Named to team going overseas, just as he was last year. Plays for the Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL).

4. Ben Gordon, Minn., 5-10/155 -- Smart. Cerebral. Sees things on ice other players don't. Great passer. Scored a beautiful backhander against Rocky Mountain. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Played for the International Falls HS Broncos ( named, by the way, for I- Falls' resident and football great Bronco Nagurski). Gordon will be playing for the Lincoln Stars (USHL) this season.

5. James Unger, Dakota, 6-2/180 -- Big Cleveland native is still growing into body. Good hand skills. Competes. Always involved. Skating not great, but he finds a way to get there. Gritty. Won't step down from a scrap. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Plays for the Topeka Scarecrows (USHL).

6. Jeff Lovecchio, Central, 6-2/173 -- Tall, lanky kid with strong skills continues to make a name for himself. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Played for the Chicago Chill Midgets last winter. Going to the River City Lancers (USHL).

7. Kevin Coughlin, Mass., 6-2/209 -- Big, strong power forward who has improved his skills and raised his competitiveness over the past year. An NTDP candidate. Plays for Cushing. 

8. Eric Slais, Central, 6-1/170 -- Tallish, lanky. Very good skills. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Played for the St. Louis Blues Jr. B (Central States Junior Hockey League) last year. Will be playing for Chicago Steel (USHL) this year.

9. Nino Musitelli, Michigan, 5-5/180 -- Small hard-working, skilled forward from the Michigan Ice Dogs. Quick. Sees ice well. Hard to take eyes off him when he was on ice. Size is only drawback. 

10. Matt McIlvane, Central, 6-1/200  -- Big, strong, strapping center from Team Illinois Midgets who plays both ends of the ice. Just a really solid power forward, a tank who can run guys over and make plays. Named to team going to Czech Republic. May be going to Chicago Freeze (NAHL). A late '85 DOB. 

11. Matt Shouneyia, Michigan, 5-9/167 -- High-energy. Strong skater. Skilled. Smart. Excellent first two days. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Will be playing for Compuware (NAHL) this season. A late '85 birthdate.

12. Brent Borgen, Minn., 5-11/170 -- A good scorer. Named to team going overseas, just as he was last year. Plays for Mahtomedi HS. 

13. Mike Atkinson, Atlantic, 5-7/150 -- Very skilled, very smart centerman, but lack of strength held him back against the top teams (i.e. Central). Plays for the Salisbury School in Connecticut. 

14. Corey Couturier, Michigan, 6-1/175 -- Big strong power forward from Marquette Electricians. Hurt his wrist, which only cost him one game.

15. Chris Poli, Mass., 6-1/191 -- Played very well, a pleasant surprise. Was consistently effective -- scored a lot, too. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Plays for Nobles in the winter. 

16. Jimmy Kilpatrick, Minn., 5-11/170 -- Clever player who sees the ice well and can score. Played last winter for Holy Angels.

17. Jimmy Russo, Mass., 6-0/166 -- Very skilled. Great in flashes, but lacked consistency. Good prospect, but didn't play his best here. Made Select Under-17 Team that went overseas last year, but didn't get the nod this time around.  Played at Thayer Academy last winter, but is transferring to Cushing. 

18. Brett Beckfield, Rocky Mt., 6-0/172 -- From Armstrong HS and the Cedar Rapids Roughriders (USHL). Has great tools and good size, but needs to get his nose dirty to achieve his full potential.

19. Joe Rooney, Mass., 5-9/170 -- Boston College recruit was hampered by charley horse. Often seems to get hurt in summer hockey, which is better than getting hurt in winter hockey. Anyway, is hard to rank because of injury. Would certainly have been ranked much higher if healthy. Named to team going overseas, just as he was last year. Has been invited to NTDP the past two seasons, but declined invitations. Formerly at St. Sebastian's, Rooney will be playing for the Walpole Stars (EJHL) in the upcoming season. 

20. David Strathman, Rocky Mt., 6-1/180 -- Moves well. From Corona Del Sol, Arizona. Came up through Played for Desert Youth Hockey Association Midget AA. .    

21. Corey Carlson, Minn., 5-10/175 -- Not as prominent as last season. Played for Greenway HS last winter after transferring from Two Harbors. 

22. Todd Johnson, New England, 6-3/185 -- A big, strong power forward prospect. Goes to the Taft School. 

23. Anthony Cosmano, Central, 5-10/175  -- Expected more. Played for Chicago Chill Midgets last winter. 

24. Bob Bellamy, Mass., 6-0/187 -- Coming on nicely. Big, strong power forward type from New England Coyotes organization. Could be a late bloomer. Will be going to the Berkshire School. 

25. Derek Hanson, Southeastern, 5-7/145 -- Small, and played on a weak team, but this at-large player from Bemidji HS showed skill and a sense of the game. 

26. Daniel Krenn, Central, 6-1/185 -- A late '85 from Culver Military Academy and Team Wisconsin Midgets.

27. Brandon Harrington, Minn., 6-1/175 -- From Rochester Lourdes HS.

28. Brian Bales, Pacific, 5-10/185  --  Alaska All-Star Midget AAA forward had a solid week. He will be headed to Sioux City (USHL) this fall.

29. Nick Biondo, Mid-Am, 5-8/190  -- Really stood out early. From Cleveland Barons organization.

30. Mick Berge, Rocky Mt., 5-11/165 -- From Dallas Stars Midgets. Can skate, create offensive. 

31. Peter MacArthur, NY, 5-10/175 -- From Northwood Prep. Has speed and a head for the game.

32. Michael Cohen, NY, 5-11/185 -- Skill forward from Williamsville, NY, right outside Buffalo, where he played for the Buffalo Regals Midget AAA team. Hampered by injury here, thus hard to rank. Scored one of the tournament's highlight reel goals. 

33. Tyler Magura, Dakota, 6-0/187 -- From Fargo South HS. Thinks game well. A sleeper.

 

Defensemen:

1. Kyle Klubertanz, Central, 6-0/170  -- Consensus, hands-down #1 D here. He was the buzz. Has all the tools. Good hands. Sees ice well. Excellent offensively. Needs a little work with his neutral zone play. Played last season with the Chicago Chill Midgets. Invited to NTDP, but will stick with his decision to go to the Green Bay Gamblers. Named to team going to Czech Republic. A late '85 DOB. 

2. Derek Peltier, Minn., 6-0/175 -- Solid with good skills and decent size. Skates very well. Named to team going to Czech Republic. Played last winter for Armstrong HS. Look for him in Cedar Rapids (USHL) this winter.

3. Phil Johnson, Minn., 5-10/175 -- Highly mobile offensive D who'll carry the puck end-to-end. Strong passing skills. Returning to Duluth East HS. The Sioux Falls Stampede (USHL), which tendered him, and the NTDP both wanted him. Named to team going to Czech Republic.

4. Dan Venard, Central,  6-0/170 -- Most observers expected more from this D, who has a year of USHL experience under his belt with the Green Bay Gamblers. Good, but not as good as in winter. Went on overseas trip last year and is going again this time around. Named to team going overseas, just as he was last year. A late '85 DOB. 

5. Lee Sweatt, Central, 5-10/175 -- All offense. Runs around all over the place and needs to be reined in a bit but still very effective. A pure athlete. Later this month, will be playing for the U.S. in world roller hockey championship with current pros (ECHL, mostly) and men up to 20 years his senior. His second trip to Europe this summer will be with the Under-18 Select Team going to the Czech Republic next month. Played for the Chicago Mission Midgets. Look for him to play the upcoming season with the Chicago Steel (USHL), where'll he'll learn tons about defensive aspect of game. Combine that with his offensive skills and you have a top DI prospect. 

6. Ryan Mahrle, Michigan, 5-11/180 -- Michigan's top D-man. Played last season for Leamington (Ont.) Jr. B. Named to team going to Czech Republic.

7. Casey Borer, Minn., 6-2/205  -- Big, defensive d-man from Shattuck has size and is willing to use it.. Not flashy at all. Just very solid. Feet need work. Needs to play with a little more speed and urgency.

8. Zach Fitzgerald, Southeast, 6-2/210 -- At-large player from Duluth, Minn. playing major junior for the Seattle Thunderbirds (WHL). Physical player. Big and strong, but tends to roam unneccesarily looking to make the big hit. Feet just OK. Hard player to rank. Some scouts thought he was excellent prospect; others thought he was awful. Depends, really, what you want him for.

9. Zach Miscovic, Central, 6-0/160 -- Very good skills and skating ability. Makes good decisions, a smart player. Needs to add strength. Played for the Chicago Chill Midgets. On Cedar Rapids (USHL) protected list.

10. Bryan Cirullo, New England, 6-0/180 -- Just OK, disappointing even, in early going. Got better as week moved along, though, and was at his best in last game. Made Select Under-17 Team that went overseas last year, but not this time around. Plays for the New England Coyotes (EJHL).

11. Trevor Ludwig, Rocky Mt., 6-0/185 -- From Dallas Stars Midgets. Steadily improving. Son of former NHLer Craig Ludwig.

12. Stephen McClellan, Mass., 6-0/157 -- Catholic Memorial d-man has size and decent skills. Steadiness is his strong suit. 

13. Spencer Dillon, Pacific, 6-3/195 -- Ex-Shattuck D from Santa Cruz, Calif. has good skills, good size. Is continuing to improve.

14. Dustin Molle, Pacific, 6-2/210 -- Late '85 from Service HS in Anchorage has to improve his feet a bit and trim some weight. At his size, he's definitely worth following. A late '85 DOB.

15. Alex Spezia, Michigan. 5-11/173  -- Smooth skater from HoneyBaked Midgets.

16. Chris Robinson, Mid-Am, 6-0/195 -- A very mobile, well-rounded d-man, the best blueliner on his team. Good player. Missed one game (tardiness).

17. Andrew Meyer, Central, 6-0/175  -- Good offensive D from the St. Louis Sting Midgets. Thinks game really well. Good, but not great skater. Will be playing for Springfield Jr. Blues (NAHL). 

18. Bret Tyler, Mass., 5-9/192 -- Hard-nosed defenseman from the Boston Jr. Bruins (EJHL) played first game then got hurt blocking shot and didn't play again until last two days, so never really got into a groove. At 5'9" and 192 may be carrying a bit too much weight. Made Select Under-17 Team that went overseas last year, but couldn't get much going this year.  

19. Steven Birnstill, NY, 6-1/185 -- A late '85 from Apple Core, 6'1" defenseman is another to follow. (By the way, Birnstill has a younger brother, a center who'll also be playing for Apple Core next year, who's among the very top '87s in the country.) 

20. Richard Lynch, NY, 5-11/175 -- Has skill. Turned puck over a bit too much here. A late '85 birthdate.

21. Grant Lewis, Mid-Am, 6-3/180  -- Excellent size. Definitely worth following.  

22. Lars Helminen, Michigan, 5-7/165  -- Has really developed his game. Smart. Skates well. Skilled. Played for Michigan Ice Dogs. Younger brother of the Michigan Wolverines' Dwight Helminen.

23. Paul Forselius, New England, 6-2/175 -- Played well. Attends Northwood School. 

24. Nick Barnych, Rocky Mt., 5-9/162 -- At-large player from Long Island. Small at 5'9", 162 but joins the attack, makes plays, and is physical. Great competitor. Will play for New England Coyotes (EJHL) this season.

 

Goaltenders:

1. Wylie Rogers, Pacific, 5-10/165 -- Fairbanks, Alaska native was the clear choice as tournament's top goaltender. He's quick, athletic, and consistent. All his games were good games. Played this past season for the National Jr. B champion Metro City Jets (CSHL). Will be playing this coming season for the NTDP. Named to team going to Czech Republic.

2. Zane Kalemba, Atlantic, 5-10/165 -- Quick and athletic. Plays for Hotchkiss School. Named to team going to Czech Republic. A very late '85-- 12/19/85, to be precise.

3. Chris Holt, Rocky Mt., 6-2/210 -- At-large player who's a dual citizen from British Columbia. Was awesome in the first game ( vs. Minnesota) and the last (vs. Central). Rather lackluster in between, though. Played for Billlings (AWHL) last year. Going to NTDP this year.

4. Anthony Tocco, Michigan, 5-11/155 -- From Michigan Ice Dogs. Played well. Late '85 DOB.

5. John Hallas, Southeastern, 6-0/155 -- Goaltender from St. Petersburg, Florida (they actually have high school hockey in the land of Carl Hiaasen now!) was perhaps the biggest surprise of the tournament as nobody had ever even heard of him going in. But he played very, very well. He's a little unorthodox and has a lot to learn, but he certainly showed he can stop the puck here. Perhaps he gets Vincent Lecavalier to shoot on him after school. Who knows?

6. Ed Neville, NY, 5-10/160 -- Drew thumbs-up and thumbs-down comments. Started slowly but got better as week went along. Played for Lansing Pride (NAHL) last season. Reported to be heading for major junior.

7. Tyler Johnson, Minn., 5-7/140 -- Played well. From East Grand Forks HS.

8. Joe Fallon, Southeastern, 6-3/185 -- At-large player from Minnesota should have/could have been the top goalie here, but underachieved. Nonetheless, the 6'3" Bemidji native is still a top prospect -- as good as anyone in his age group. Fallon will be entering his second year in the USHL this fall, playing for the Cedar Rapids Roughriders. Last year, he played for  the now-dormant Rochester Mustangs franchise.

9. Wes Russell, Central, 6-1/180 -- Had a couple of very good games. Very composed. Plays under control. Played for Chicago Flames Midgets this past season. On Cedar Rapids (USHL) list.

10. Keith Longo, Mass., 5-11/168 -- OK. Goes to Cushing. 

11. Michael Zacharias, Minn., 5-10/165  -- Plays for Armstrong HS. Made Select Under-17 Team that went overseas last year, but didn't play very well this time around.

 

7/3/02

U.S. Under-18 Select Team Announced 

The USA Hockey Under-18 Select Team that will compete in next month's Under-18 Junior World Cup was announced today. 

Roster: 2002 U.S. Under-18 Select Team

Steve Johnson of the Lincoln Stars (USHL) will be the team's head coach. He will be assisted by Steve Dagdigian, head coach at St. Sebastian's School, the winners of the New England Prep School championship the past two seasons; and U.S. Air Force Academy associate head coach Derek Schooley.

All of the players on the team were picked off their performance at the Select 17 Festival, which concluded six days ago in St. Cloud, Minnesota  

No players who competed for the NTDP last year are allowed to appear at the Select Festivals, hence no NTDPers are on the team going to this tournament. 

Here's the U.S. schedule:

Sat. Aug. 10 -- Czech Republic vs. USA @ Breclav, Czech Republic (exhibition game)
Mon. Aug. 12 Czech Republic vs. USA @ Breclav, Czech Republic
Tues. Aug. 13 USA vs. Russia @ Breclav, Czech Republic
Thurs. Aug. 15 Sweden vs. USA @ Breclav, Czech Republic
Fri. Aug. 16 Qualification Round TBD
Sat. Aug. 18 Medal Round  TBD 

The United States is in Group B. Group A consists of Slovakia, Finland, Canada, and Switzerland and that pool will compete in Piestany, Slovakia, which is over the border and down the road apiece.   

Note: We're working on the USHR rankings from the Select 17 Festival and hope to have them posted by Friday at the latest. In all, we'll have 60-70 players ranked. 

 

7/1/02

Kolarik, Rogers Join NTDP

5'10", 150 lb. RC Chad Kolarik, who played last season at Deerfield Academy, will be leaving the prep ranks to join the U.S. National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, Mich. 

Kolarik, the younger brother of Harvard forward Tyler Kolarik, is one of the top '86 forwards in the country, and a future blue chip college prospect. To put a finer point on it, in our eyes he currently trails only Robbie Schremp and Adam Pineault in that age group. Kolarik, a pure athlete, is an excellent skater -- with smoothness, speed, and quickness. He has great mitts and natural scoring ability. He led all goal scorers at last summer's Select 15 Festival. (By the way, while Chad and his older brother are both pure athletes who can skate, Chad is best described as more of a skill, finesse type, while Tyler has the edge in grit.)  

Kolarik, a 1/26/86 DOB from Abington, Penn., played for the Philadelphia Jr. Flyers Bantam AAA team before going to Deerfield last fall where, as a freshman, he was a fourth-line center. Kolarik could well have led the team in scoring if he'd been installed as the #1 center, but at Deerfield, as at a bunch of other top New England prep programs, seniority has its privileges. 

Recently, the U.S. Under-18 team added '85 goalie Chris Holt (Billings Bulls --AWHL). Now, coming off a strong performance at last week's Select 17 Festival, they have added Fairbanks, Alaska native Wylie Rogers. The two will replace '85s Al Montoya and Gerald Coleman, who left the NTDP early for, respectively, the University of Michigan and the London Knights (OHL).

Rogers, who's 5'9", 165 lbs., played for the Fairbanks Ice Dogs in '00-01 before moving down to Michigan to play for the Metro Jets of the Central States Hockey League this past season. In April, behind some stellar goaltending from Rogers, the Metro Jets won the National Jr. B title.  

Last week at the Select 17s, Rogers was clearly the top goaltender, exhibiting his usual quickness and athleticism. He was also extremely consistent. He did not have a single bad game.

This fall, Wylie will be entering his senior year in high school. He's a 3/16/85 DOB.

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