Established 1996


“His Teams Played Hard”

On Wednesday, Steve Jacobs coached his last game at Cushing Academy. After 22 years behind the bench, Jacobs, who announced his retirement on Jan. 13, will be moving with his family to Alpharetta, Georgia, outside of Atlanta, where he will be Vice President and Director of Hockey Operations at the Cooler, an athletic complex owned by John Bardis, whose son Tom is a Cushing grad currently playing at St. Lawrence. 

In the weeks since then, we had the opportunity to speak to some people about the Jacobs era at Cushing. We’ll stay out of the way, though, and let these four men, all of whom were part of the story, have the floor.


-- Charlie Corey, a longtime coach at Lawrence Academy, was behind the bench for some epic Cushing-Lawrence battles. 

“I always thought his ability as a coach was underrated because of the talent he had. You can have a ton of talent – and with talent comes ego -- but unless you get the players on the same page you’re not going to have the success he had. His teams played hard – none played harder. I think, over the years, he didn’t get enough credit. When we played Cushing the teams really went at each other. Those were some of the best games I ever saw. Our kids lived to play Cushing. And I think they lived to play us.” 


-- Tom Poti was a senior and the brightest star on one of the all-time great prep teams, the 1995-96 Cushing championship squad that went 35-1 and also featured Ryan Moynihan, Bobby Allen, and Joe Exter. A Worcester native, Poti is in his ninth year in the NHL.

“I owe a lot to Coach Jacobs. He’s the coach I developed under and made the most strides under. He’s a big part of the reason I am where I am today. I wouldn’t be where I am without him.”

“His strengths? I’d say getting the best out of every single player on the team. He wasn’t a big x’s-and-o’s guy. He was about getting the most from every player – not just the power play guys, but the third and fourth line guys, too.”

“He cared about each individual. He was about developing kids and getting them on to the next level. He cared more about that than the wins and losses.”


-- NHL Hall of Famer Ray Bourque, a five-time Norris Trophy winner, has sent both his sons to Cushing, first Chris and now Ryan. He has been an assistant coach at Cushing for the last six years.

“It’s pretty remarkable the amount of years he’s been there and the impact he’s had on kids. I’ve seen first hand how involved he is, and how passionate he is – both about the game and Cushing. He’s fun to be around. He cares about the kids there and plays every one in the right spot. Every day he shows up with passion and he pushes the kids to keep getting better. His success is remarkable.”

“He’s always on the phone promoting his players. He cares for every one of those kids. He has a great way about him. Cushing Academy, and the kids, have been lucky that  he’s been the coach there for so long.”

“He’s just been fun to work with. He runs great practices. He prepares the kids well. I like to be around people who enjoy the game and have fun with it. Both he and Bill Troy bring a lot of energy every day. I have enjoyed being able to help out. He’s been very flexible and given me a good opportunity, as well as free rein whenever I have something to say. It’s been fun, and it keeps me busy.”


-- Bill Troy, who has served as an assistant with Jacobs for 17 years and is the popular choice to be Jacobs’ successor, chose to put his words on paper, and faxed the following to the USHR office:

“For the past twenty-two years Steve Jacobs has put all of his focus, passion and energy into Cushing Academy and the hockey program. Each and every day he brings an intense passion to the rink. It is a passion that you can feel and see, and one that has an immediate – and lasting – impact on his players.

“This is an emotional time for Steve. When any coach decides to move on after 20 plus years, it can be a tough decision, and it has been that for Steve. He has helped build this program from our early days, when we had to travel by bus to the Gardner State Rink, practice, and then return to campus with all of our gear. We had a place to play, but we did not have our own arena, or a place to call our own. With Steve’s guidance and his ability to build strong relationships, there were several people who stepped up and allowed us to build Iorio Arena – a first-class arena on campus.

“When you look at a successful high school program from the outside, many people do not realize the hours put into the program – the meetings, the phone calls, the relationships with players and their families and, of course, the long bus trips. I have traveled across the country to many places and numerous tournaments over the past 17 years as Steve’s assistant coach. I think what Steve will miss most are the relationships with the kids, and the area that means the most to any coach – the locker room. This is where Steve shines, and where his passion for teaching and coaching can be seen. He asks every kid to give their best every day and to be prepared. He has created a culture of hard work and striving to be your best.

“One important thing that I have learned from Steve throughout my years as his assistant coach is that we should never stop learning. You can always learn more about hockey and you can always learn how to treat people better. He is always reading books by other coaches, always searching to be a better coach. There are many days when his phone rings and it will be a player from three, four, even ten years ago, checking in or asking for some sound advice. For both Steve and me, it is important that our players know that we are there for them, even after they step off the ice.

“For Steve, his career has been about instilling a hard work ethic, the importance of being a great teammate, commitment and dedication. Steve has shown kids that once you do this, the success of a season will take care of itself.”


In Jacobs' 22 seasons, his teams have never had a losing campaign, and in all but one season reached the final eight. Twelve Cushing teams have reached the Final Four, five have reached the title game, and two won it all -- the 1996 and 1998 teams.


Great 8 Rosters

The 26th annual Ted Brill Great 8 Tournament gets underway Friday night at 6:00 pm with four quarterfinals. Semifinals are Saturday, with quarterfinal winners meeting at 1:00 and 3:30 pm and quarterfinal losers meeting at 12:30 and 3:00 pm.

On Sunday, the seventh place game is at 11:30 am; the fifth place game is at 2:00 pm; the third place game is at noon; and the championship game is at 2:30 pm.

All games are at Wakota Arena in South St. Paul.

The series started in 1983 and for the first 14 years was known as the Minnesota High School All-Star Maroon and Gold Series and featured just two teams – an outstate team and a metro team. Eleven years ago, the tournament expanded to four teams with a combined total of 68 players and was known as the “Great 68.” Seven years ago it ballooned to its current eight-team format.

Here are the rosters:

Section 1A-1AA

Goalies: Kevin Donohue, Rochester Mayo; Clay Casanova, Albert Lea. Defensemen: Bryan Frischmann, Rochester Century; Bryce Wilcox, Rochester Century; Brad Yetzer, Rochester John Marshall; Mike Gabberg, Lakeville North; Matt Boerboom, Marshall. Forwards: Joe Knoepke, Rochester Century; Mark Walton, Albert Lea; Colin Brisco, Rochester Century; Matt Fish, Dodge County; Adam Wiesner, Rochester John Marshall; Mike Kvasnicka, Lakeville North; Reed Zweber, Lakeville North; Tony Sackett, Rochester Mayo; Chris Goodew, Owatonna.

Section 2A-3AA

Goalies: Luke Kretchmer, Roseville; Justin Lochner, Sauk Rapids. Defensemen: Matt Schugel, Roseville; Matt Voigtlander, Centennial; Ian Stauber, Duluth Marshall; James Olmscheid, St. Cloud Cathedral; Caleb Wolfgram, White Bear Lake; Tony Danna, Hill-Murray. Forwards: Jack Connolly, Duluth Marshall; Jordan Singer, Centennial; Matt Hartmann, White Bear Lake; Bob Gutsch, Duluth Marshall; Travis Peckskamp, Sauk Rapids; Justin Filzen, Proctor; Ian Guzzo, Duluth Marshall; Brad Wieck, Roseville; Josh Gunderson, Stillwater.

Section 3A-2AA

Goalies: Ben Hause, Cretin-Derham Hall; Mark Guggenberger, Richfield. Defensemen: Drew Darwitz, Cretin-Derham Hall; A.J. Knapp, Red Wing; Jake Pumper, Northfield; Matt Lavigne, South St. Paul; Garret Larson, South St. Paul; Mike Mulally, St. Thomas Academy. Forwards: Brandon Banneman, Rochester Lourdes; J.C. Blaisdell, St. Thomas Academy; Eric Amundson, Rochester Lourdes; Brandon Boyd, Hastings; Derek Marks, Park of Cottage Grove; Sam Soika, St. Paul Johnson; John Schmidt, St. Paul Johnson; Greg Scanlon, Richfield.

Section 4A-4AA

Goalies: Brendon Eason, Anoka; Eric Kupka, Rogers. Defensemen: Freddy Bidinger, Sartell; T.J. Gaustad, Fergus Falls; Brad Hickey, Blaine; Andy Kraabel, Coon Rapids; Carl Lindblad, Morris-Benson; Sean McNeeley, Osseo. Forwards: Andrew Benson, Maple Grove; Grant Ellena, Coon Rapids; Lukas Jorgensen, Little Falls; Brendan Loney, Maple Grove; Ben Lynch, Blaine; Ryan Noonan, Anoka; Jascha Pettit, Wadena; Tony Schultz, Morris-Benson; Kevin Wentland, North Metro.

Section 5A-5AA

Goalies: Jack Ries, Totino Grace; Randy Johnson, Burnsville. Defensemen: Bryan Brutlag, Holy Angels; Mason Swenson, Eagan; Chris Franks, Burnsville; John Ano, Breck; Robby Craft, Totino Grace; Garrett Anderson, Bloomington Kennedy. Forwards: Chase Polacek, Holy Angels; Mike Louwerse, Blake; Tony McDonald, Totino Grace; Kyle Politz, Apple Valley; Britton Smith, Holy Angels; Pat Dockendon, Eagan; Nick Haften, Spring Lake Park; Steve Steinhauser, Blake; Evan Ptachick, Apple Valley.

Section 6A-6AA

Goalies: Brian Brooke, Eden Prairie; Taylor Peterson, Orono. Defensemen: Beau Braun, Hutchinson; Jason Ehrmantraut, Chaska; Kyle Reagan, Minnetonka; Casey Horgan, Mound; Aaron Shibrowski, Benilde-St. Margaret's; Cody Hetletvedt, Faribault. Forwards: Brian Giordano, Chaska; Westy Nelson, Hopkins; Ryan Witty, New Prague; Stephen Carew, Benilde-St. Margaret's; Jack Paul, Minnetonka; John Kruse, Eden Prairie; Dan Vranek, Eden Prairie; Adam Randall, Orono; Philip Dunn, Mound.

Section 7A-7AA

Goalies: Reid Ellingson, Cloquet; Ben Leis, Duluth East. Defensemen: Brandon Martell, Elk River; Colin Trachsel, Duluth East; Scott Kisnel, Virginia; Chad Huttel, Hermantown; Greg Sutherland, Hibbing; Cody Carlisle, Forest Lake. Forwards: Tyler Johnson, Cloquet; Brandon Brodhag, Elk River; Ryan Schmidt, Hermantown; Zach Morse, Grand Rapids; Will McLean, Duluth East; Brendan Kapella, Hibbing; Mark McGillivray, Virginia; Christian Fogerty, Forest Lake; Garet Chumley, Cambridge.

Section 8A-8AA

Goalies: Alex Bjerk, Roseau; Joe Duncan, Moorhead. Defensemen: Michael Benedict, Thief River Falls; Sam Carr, Roseau; John Clark, Lake of the Woods; Brett Lien, Crookston; Erik Hedman, Moorhead; Allen McBride, Warroad. Forwards: Joe Schiller, Detroit Lakes; Kurt Weston, Roseau; Pat Dietz, Moorhead; Noah Nemgar, Bemidji; Corey Horien, Thief River Falls; Michael Palmiscno, East Grand Forks; Nathan Voll, Roseau; Ross Trousdale, Buffalo; Cody Bottern, Thief River Falls.



Top 25 From Minn. State Tournament

It’s taken awhile to put this together, but here it is: 25 players that stood out for us at the Minnesota State High School Tournament, played March 7-10.

This is not a ranking, but rather an alphabetical list. In putting it together, we were looking for players with the potential to play in the USHL and beyond.  That was our sole criteria.

Nine of the 25 players are from Class A (Orono, Blake, Little Falls, and Albert Lea were defeated in the quarterfinals. In the semis, Duluth Marshall edged St. Thomas Academy, 3-2 in double overtime; and Hermantown got by Warroad, 4-3. In the final, Hermantown topped Duluth Marshall, 4-1, to finish the season undefeated.)

Sixteen players are from Class AA (Woodbury, Hill-Murray, Edina, and Blaine were all defeated in the quarterfinals. In the semis, Roseau beat Rochester Century, 3-1; and Grand Rapids needed overtime to top Burnsville, 4-3. In the final, Roseau beat Grand Rapids, 5-1.)

Not a single metro team made the finals in either conference.

For most players, we’ve supplied both full-season stats and state tournament stats.

Top 25 Players:

Tyler Barnes, junior forward, Burnsville
5’11” left shot forward… ’90 birthdate…. 29-25-54 in 31 games… Very skilled, good stick... Came through at key times in the tournament --  a goal and assist vs. Blaine; two goals vs. Grand Rapids… A difference maker. 4-3-7

Sam Carr, senior defenseman, Roseau
6’1”, 214 lbs… ’89 birthdate… 11-13-24 in 31 games… Dependable, steady, and played a ton of minutes. 0-2-2

Jack Connelly, senior forward, Duluth Marshall
5’8”, 150 lb. ’89 birthdate… 37-40-77 in 31 games... Really skilled, but small… Skates well, has good stick, and makes plays. 1-5-6

Joe Faupel, sophomore forward, Rochester Century
’90 birthdate… 5’10”…Shoots left… 17-13-30  in 26 regular season games played… Was hero of Rochester-Century’s 6-5 OT win over Hill-Murray, scoring his team’s final four goals (he had an assist in the game as well)… Anticipates well… Has quick release… Sees the ice and makes good decisions…Creates traffic in front… Outworks opponents along the boards and in the corners. 4-1-5.

Jared Festler, junior forward, Little Falls
5’9”… Leading scorer in state with 71-54-125 line in 30 games… Lincoln Stars property… Works hard every shift… Excellent puck skills and playmaking ability… Very good speed and quickness… Dangerous anytime he was on the ice… Has ability to make highlight type plays. Committed to St. Cloud State. 2-2-4.

Chris Franks, senior defenseman, Burnsville
Right shot… 6’2”… 11-32-43 in 31 games… Capable of carrying the puck coast-to-coast… Demonstrated endurance and stamina… Effectively uses his reach and size… Strong shot from the point… Can step up into the play… Hockey sense a question mark. 

Garrett Grimstad, senior forward, Rochester Century
6’0”, 190 lb. late ’88 birthdate… right shot RW… 21-47-68 in 31 games… With his skill, we  expected a little more, though he was OK (leading point getter on his team)… He’s with the Green Bay Gamblers now. 0-6-6

Bob Gutsch, senior forward, Duluth Marshall
Left shot… 6’1”… 23-34-57 in 31 games… Quick to the puck… Excellent play maker in the zone (give and go)… Strong, quick shot… Effective around the net. 1-4-5

Ben Hanowski, sophomore forward, Little Falls
6’2”… Second-leading scorer in state with 40-71-111 in 30 games… Feet need work, but he’s fine once he gets going… Strong on the puck… Power forward has a knack for scoring and making plays around the net... Works well with Festler… Good upside. Omaha Lancers property. 2-1-3

Nathan Hardy, senior goaltender, Hermantown
5’11”… ’88 birthdate…. Was 19-0-2 with three shutouts and a 1.85 gaa and .930 save percentage during regular season….Very steady… Came up with some big time saves in final vs. Duluth Marshall… In tournament, he allowed just seven goals and had a .914 save percentage.

Chad Huttel, senior defenseman, Hermantown
5’10” right shot d-man… 18-34-52 in 31 games… Ran the power play… Logged a ton of ice time…Very strong on the puck, and smart. 1-3-4

Ryan Knutson, junior forward, Rochester Century
Right shot... Twenty-five regular season games played (22 goals, 7 assists)… Nice touch around the net… Excellent stick handler in traffic… Physical player… Soft hands… Effective at using his outside speed and drives hard to the net… USHL rights owned by Cedar Rapids. 0-2-2 w/ six minors.

Tyler Landman, sophomore forward, Roseau
5’8”, 175 lb. ‘90 birthdate… Solid centerman… 28-26-54 in 31 games… Pretty smart; dependable, too… Good all-around player. Scored a pair of goals to lead Roseau to 5-1 win over Grand Rapids in the title game. 2-2-4

Nick Larson,  senior forward, Hill Murray
Right shot… 6’2”… 31-30-61 in 29 games… Excellent skating skills… Demonstrates patience with the puck… A good player but, all things considered, didn’t accomplish all that much here… Missed consolation game due to back injury… Mr. Hockey Award finalist… Omaha Lancers own his rights… Gopher recruit for ’08. 1-0-1  

Drew LeBlanc, junior forward, Hermantown
Shoots left… 6’0”… 31-59-90 in 31 regular season games… Creative with the puck… Can stick handle in traffic… Foot speed is a concern… Good anticipation… Playing for the Chicago Steel now. 4-4-8

Michael Lee, sophomore goaltender, Roseau
5’11”… ’90 birthdate… Took over goaltending job midway through season and helped lead Roseau to title… Had a bunch of shutouts down the stretch… Calm, steady, and takes up a lot of net… Very controlled, wasn’t all over the place. Allowed seven goals against; .951 save percentage.

Aaron Marvin, senior forward, Warroad
6’2”… 31-40-71 in 31 games… Big strong kid who will play very physically at times… Shows energy in bursts… Decent puck skills put doesn’t appear to be natural scorer… Mr. Hockey Award finalist… Committed to St. Cloud State… Playing for Tri-City Storm right now. 1-5-6  

Dustin Moser, junior forward, Roseau
Listed as 5’9”, but appears smaller… ’89 birthdate…14-20-34 in 28 games… Good stick; very skilled. 3-1-4

Aaron Ness, sophomore defenseman, Roseau
May ’90 birthdate… Shoots left… 5’10”… 13-38-51 in 31 games… Special player… Smart… Best defenseman in tournament… Anticipates well -- effective at turning the play at the defensive blueline…Effective at digging the puck out in the corners… Quick to headman the puck… Quick to step-up into the offensive play… Committed to Gophers right after tournament… Sioux Falls holds his USHL rights. Father, Jay Ness, was a defenseman at North Dakota in early ‘80s. 0-3-3

Nick Oliver, sophomore forward, Roseau
Right shot… 6’2”… May ’91 birthdate... 12-14-26 in 31 games… Brings a physical aspect to the game… Supports the play and handles the puck well in traffic… Quick release with accurate shot… Son of Roseau coach… Committed to St. Cloud State…  Invited to NTDP evaluation camp. 3-1-4

Jon Schreiner, junior defenseman,  St. Thomas Academy
Shoots right… 6’1”… 28 games played during the regular season (7 goals, 17 assists)… Strong, low and accurate shot on net from the point… Quick snap shot… Effective transition game; gets up the ice quickly… Impacted the games here. 0-5-5

Joe Stejskal, senior defenseman, Grand Rapids
Right shot… 6’2”… Twenty-eight games played during the regular season (14 goals , 19 assists)… Physical player with clean mid-ice checks… Sticks with his check… Effective at breaking out the puck… Dartmouth recruit. 0-2-2

Ian Stauber, senior defenseman, Duluth Marshall
Right shot d-man… 6’1”, 180 lbs… Skates well, logged a lot of minutes… Very steady. 0-0-0

Kurt Weston, senior forward, Roseau
Shoots left… 6’0”… 25-24-49 in 31 games… Quick… Excellent in traffic… Creative with the puck… Supports the play… Strong on his skates and effective in tight… Hockey sense a question mark. 2-5-7

Patrick White, senior forward, Grand Rapids
Right shot… 6’1”… 18-31-49 in 24 games… Excellent puck handler… Aggressive at pressing the play in the offensive zone with good outside speed and strong upper body strength… Effective in traffic… Supports the play… Shut down by Roseau in the title game… Mr. Hockey Award finalist… Gophers recruit. 3-1-4  



Monarchs Win Tier III Jr. A Title

The New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs won the inaugural USA Hockey Tier III National Championship, topping the Bay State Breakers, 5-1, last night at Walpole’s Iorio Arena.

The game was a rematch of the EJHL Championship Series, which the Monarchs took with 5-0 and 6-0 wins on March 17-18.

The story back then was Monarchs goaltender James Mello and his back-to-back shutouts. Last night, though, the Breakers finally solved him, nicking him for a third-period goal. In the three games vs. the Breakers, Mello stopped 101 of 102 shots.

Last night, the Monarchs started out a little slowly, but a rebound goal by Nick DelGallo with 22 seconds left in the first gave the Monarchs a 1-0 lead going into the first intermission.

In the second, the Monarchs dominated, outshooting the Breakers, 20-6. However, Breakers goalie Nick Krauss was solid, only allowing one goal, a Rence Coassian power play goal.

In the third, the Monarchs added three more goals, the final an empty-netter, to salt things away.

DelGallo, who had a pair of goals, was named game MVP.

“Except for six losses,” said Monarchs head coach Sean Tremblay, “it was a perfect season. We won every tournament we were entered in -- and we won the league title and a national championship. Everything we could have won, we did. There wasn’t anything that this team set as a goal that they didn’t accomplish. I’m really proud of them. They set the bar high, and they did it with class and integrity. They’re a great group of young men.”


Velleca, Jillson Makes Their Picks

-- 6’1”, 180 lb. forward Jeff Velleca of the New England Falcons (EJHL) has committed to Union College for the fall of ’08.

Velleca, a 4/17/87 birthdate in his second year with the Falcons, had a 25-33-58 line in 45 games and finished as the Falcons’ leading scorer. He was tied for sixth in the league in scoring.  

Velleca has good speed, and the ability to find open guys. He’s also a strong penalty killer.

Before going to the Falcons, Velleca, a Waterbury, Conn. native, played for Notre Dame-Fairfield HS.

--  5’10”, 160 lb. forward Locke Jillson of the Dallas Stars Midget AAA squad has committed to Cornell for the fall of ’08.

Look for him in the USHL next season.

Jillson, a 5/11/88 birthdate, is a native of Dallas.


Hayes Has Options

U.S. Under-18 Team forward Jimmy Hayes, a late ’89 who is currently in the 11th grade, has been invited back to the NTDP next year, even though he will have aged out and be ineligible for the World Under-18s.

He is undecided about accepting the offer.

Hayes, who is expected at BC in the fall of ’08, has ruled out playing in the USHL. His draft rights are owned by the Ohio Junior Bluejackets.

There is a chance he could return to Nobles for his senior year, or he could play in the EJHL. Needless to say, he can expect heavy pressure from the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

Hayes is draft eligible in 2008.



Monarchs and Breakers to Meet for Title

The New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs and the Bay State Breakers will meet in the finals of the 2007 Tier III Jr. A National Championship at Walpole’s Iorio Arena at 7:00 pm tonight.

In last night’s first semi, the Breakers came back from a 1-0 deficit after one period and knocked off the New York Bobcats, 4-2. Larry Willard had a hat trick for the Breakers, and Nick Krauss kicked out 30 of 32 shots.

In the nightcap, the EJHL champion Monarchs had no problem with the Northern Mass Cyclones, rolling to a 9-2 win. Paul Thompson had a five-point night for the Monarchs (2g,3a) and Denny Kearney had two goals. Monarchs goaltender James Mello saw his shutout streak end at 174 minutes.



Hendricken Repeats in Rhode Island

Bishop Hendricken blanked Mount St. Charles, 1-0, last night to win its second straight Rhode Island high school hockey championship before a sold-out crowd at Providence College’s Schneider Arena.

Stephen Buco scored on a wraparound at 5:57 of the third period to break the 0-0 deadlock. Peter Taylor and Stephen Devereaux picked up assists on the goal.

Hendricken senior goaltender Scott Heffernan kicked out 21 shots for the shutout, his 11th of the season. Heffernan was named the MVP of the game.

Hendricken went into the best-of-three series undefeated in two years of Rhode Island state play, but lost the opener of the best-of-three series as Mount senior goaltender Luke Mayer stopped all 40 shots he faced as his team blanked Hendricken, 3-0, Friday night.

Saturday night, in game two, the Mount rode the momentum, taking a 3-0 lead after the first period. At that point Hendricken woke up and took control of things, scoring three in the second and adding the game winner in the third.

For the final five periods of play Hendricken kept the Mount off the board, as the pre-tournament favorites completed their comeback.


Pereira to BU

South Kent School senior forward Joe Pereira has committed to Boston University.

Pereira, who had committed to UConn last August, decommitted recently. As for Boston University, the BU staff reports that Pereira initiated things, contacting them and possibly others, a couple of weeks ago – in the days leading up to the Hockey East Tournament. Subsequently, Pereira informed UConn that he had had a change of heart. Last week, UConn sent out an email to all schools asking them to back off. The BU staff reports, however, that when they contacted UConn coach Bruce Marshall to ask if Pereira had indeed decommitted they were told that he had. 

Pereira’s coach at South Kent, Geoff Marotollo, insists that, “No one infringed in this situation. No one contacted Joe Pereira. No one.”

When Pereira informed his coach that he was decommitting, Marotollo suggested he sleep on it. Pereira did, but his decision to decommit did not change.

After that, Pereira contacted schools – BU, UMass, UNH, Northeastern, and likely others as well.

“The kid didn’t want to go,”Marotollo said. “I lose kids a lot – even with a signed contract. If they don’t want to come I just rip it up and move on.”

“UConn has handled it well. (Assistant coach) Matt Plante did an excellent job. After getting hired there that was his first goal – getting Pereira. And he did.”   

Pereira, a 5’10” center and an ’88 birthdate, is quick, clever, has a good stick and the vision to know what to do with it. In 27 games for South Kent, he posted a team-leading 25-25-50 line, and was a key factor in leading his team to the Div. I prep final four in Salem earlier this month.

Pereira visited Boston University last Thursday.


Beantown Classic

Last Thursday was the big day at the Beantown Spring Classic in Marlborough, Mass. Over 150 players, and about 125 college recruiters and pro and junior scouts on hand. The level of play was very good, and the players were well-chosen -- very, very few were in over their heads. As usual, some players hadn’t been on skates in 2-3 weeks while others are still playing. With that said, our approach to these things is simply this: if a player does well, we take note. And, conversely, if a player looks out of sync, we are forgiving because, as we said, the season is already in the rear-view mirror for many of the kids. Timing is key in hockey and it can be hard to get back once you’ve spent a couple weeks on vacation.

With games going on simultaneously, it was impossible to see every moment of every game, but we did manage to catch each team twice.

We paid slightly more attention to the younger birth years, so we’ll start with them first.

Pre-Draft Division (’90, ’91, and ’92):

First off, the goaltending was uniformly strong. Clay Witt (’91, Junior Bruins Empire), whose team is still playing, was excellent, probably the best prospect for our money. 6’3” Jake Williams (’90, Northfield-Mt-Hermon) also caught our eyes – quick for a big kid. There’s upside there. We also found TJ Massie (’90, Cushing) and Connor Shannon (’90, NH Monarchs Empire) to be sharp. 

On the blue line, we thought Jeff Buvinow (’90, Gunnery) was excellent. He’s 5’8”, 165 lbs so he’s extremely slight, but he’s smooth, highly mobile, an excellent passer, and has good vision. 5’10” Michael Chiasson (‘91, Las Vegas Outlaws), the son of the late NHL defenseman Steve Chiasson, was paired up with Buvinow, and played with a lot of poise. 6’1” Paul Dimitruk (’90, Exeter) has good mobility for his size – he played well. Gus Young (’91, Nobles) is not at all flashy, but he’s strong on his skates, plays a conservative game, and just keeps things simple. 6’1” Zach Carriveau (’90, Portland Jr. Pirates) showed promise. Danny Furlong (’91, CM) skates well with the puck, keeps his head up, and is another good prospect. Ryan Kavanaugh (’91, Tabor) is on the small side at 5’8”, 170, but was excellent here – played physically and connected on some nice passes. 6’0” Joey Dillon and 5’11” Evan Gogonis, both ‘90s from the Junior Bruins Empire Team, made an impact. Both can make that nice first pass out of the zone as well as set it up from the blue line. 

Up front, we liked 5’10” Justin Bruckel (’90, Syracuse – EJHL) – excellent speed and a quick release on his shot plus he has a year of juniors under his belt. 5’8” Casey Brugman (’90, Cushing) is a determined wind-up toy. He just gets at it and doesn’t let up. Several Foxboro Stars ’90 birthdates stood out, chief among them 6’0” Sean Logue, who can skate, hit hard, and really fire it – an excellent prospect. 6’0” John Sperzel, a strong skater, and 6’1” Eric Robinson stood out as well. 5’11” Mark Goggin (’90, Choate) was exceptionally good. He can slow the game down, dictate the pace, and sees it really well. 5’6” Matt Crowley (’91, Connecticut Jr. Wolves) is small, but it might not matter – he’s magic with the puck on his stick, and can operate in tight spaces. 5’9” Derek Arnold (’90, Junior Bruins Empire) is a nice prospect – he’s well-rounded, and can set guys up or get open himself. 6’0” Mark Anthoine (’90, Portland Jr. Pirates) has already committed to Maine, and it’s easy to see why. Every time he’s on the ice you notice him. 6’1” Matt Zarbo (’90, Junior Bruins) has a year of EJ experience – he plays hard, and is hard to miss. 6’1” John Henrion (’91, Junior Bruins) looked a little sleepy in the morning game – he’d been out at the NTDP camp – but cranked it up in the evening session, opening eyes with a couple of big-time snipes. Last but not least, we wanted to mention the ‘92s on hand – there were only a handful – and several of them were very intriguing. 5’9” Jon Mleczko, who already has a year of prep play under his belt as a freshman at Milton Academy, really stood out for his speed – he can fly. 5’11”, 197 lb. Billy Arnold of the Fessenden School will be popping up at one of a handful of top prep programs in the fall. He’s only 14 and carrying baby fat but, when that disappears, he could be a major force. He didn’t look at all out of place in this crowd. Another top 14-year-old prospect is forward Kevin Hayes, the younger brother of BC recruit Jimmy Hayes. He bears some similarities to his older brother at the same age. He’s smart, poised, likely to shoot up in size, and in time his skating will smooth out. Look for him to be an impact player at Nobles before too long. 

There were others who played well, and if we left anyone out, we apologize.

Draft Division (’87, ’88, and ’89):

We spent a little less time with the older group, so please keep that in mind when perusing the following. And, in the time we did spend, we focused primarily on players we were less familiar with, and let the rest of the players come to us. The following is not intended to be a complete list, but, rather, some comments on players who stood out for us.

In net, the big eye-opener was Nick Eno (’89, Green Mountain Glades). He’s 6’3”, 190 lbs. and technically sound, with quick feet for someone his size. He has the tools to be a top goaltender in the EJHL next season. 

On defense, the biggest revelation was 5’11” Cam Burt (’87, New England Huskies), who was excellent, and certainly opened a lot of eyes. A Detroit native, he can skate, he can make plays, plus he’s quick and highly athletic. He was extremely effective both offensively and defensively. In his own end, he used an effective sweep check, an underutilized skill these days. 6’2” Eric Baier (’88, NH Jr. Monarchs) was consistently noticeable for his ability to consistently skate the puck end-to-end. He was an offensive powerhouse. 6’2” Drew Mackenzie (’88, Taft) was excellent as well – just a strong prototypical defenseman who just seems to keep getting better. That trio really stood out.  

Up front, 5’10” Nick Pitsikoulis (‘88, Westminster) the Greek God of Goals and the scourge of Salisbury, was a standout, consistently creating offense. 6’0” Patrick Cullen (’89, Washington Jr. Nationals) was a player we hadn’t seen before. The RPI recruit could be a very good one – he can skate and shoot it. 6’0” Brian Flynn (’88, Pomfret) beat the Monarchs James Mello with a really nice 5-hole goal. He could be a good late pickup for someone, though maybe a year in juniors will help further his goals. 5’10” Jeff Ryan of the St. George’s School, the youngest player in the draft division – he’s a 12/27/89 birthdate – didn’t look at all out of place. He’ll be getting a lot of attention (but, as a late ’89, he’s not even draft eligible). 6’1” Alex Killorn (’89, Deerfield) may have helped his draft status with his play here – he certainly didn’t hurt it. Other forwards whose play jumped out at us included 6’1” Nick Bonino (’88, Avon), 5’10” P-O Michaud (Portland Jr. Pirates), 6’0” Austin Smith (’88, Gunnery), 5’9” Stevie Moses (’89, Junior Bruins), 5’10” Yuri Bouharevich (’87, St. Paul’s), and 6’1” Jeff Velleca (’87, Junior Falcons). All those guys are committed except Bouharevich and Velleca.

South Kent School forward Joe Pereira was rostered but didn’t appear in the tournament as he was reported to be making a visit to Boston University.     



Hermits Rule in Jersey

St. Augustine Prep topped St. Peter’s, 3-1, to win the New Jersey non-public championship game Friday night.

For #5 seed St. Augustine, whose moniker is the Hermits, it was their first-ever state title.

Kevin Crowe scored the game winner at 12:57 of the third period, breaking a 1-1 tie, and the Hermits added an empty-netter as the clock wound down.

Earlier, the Hermits had gone up 1-0 at 7:18 of the second on a Dave Macalino goal.

Then, with less than two minutes left in the second period, St. Peter’s forward Kyle Palmieri, an invitee to the US National Development Team Evaluation Camp earlier in the week, set up the tying goal when he made a pass out from behind the net to Bryan Robinson, who found the back of the net, tying the game at 1-1.



Tier III Jr. A Championship Schedule

The 2007 USA Hockey Tier III Jr. A National Championship, a four-team tournament with the top two teams from the Eastern Junior Hockey League and the Atlantic Junior Hockey League, gets underway tomorrow -- Mon. March 26 – and concludes Tues. March 27.

All games will be held at Walpole’s Iorio Arena. Here’s the schedule:

Mon. March 26 – Semifinals:
5:30 pm – NY Bobcats vs. Bay State Breakers, followed by NH Junior Monarchs vs. Junior Cyclones.

Tues. March 27
Championship game, 7:00 pm


Johnson Candidate for Sioux Women’s Job

Lincoln Stars (USHL) long-time head coach Steve Johnson has applied for the vacant University of North Dakota women’s head coaching position.

Johnson, a Grand Forks native and former Hobey Baker Award finalist who tallied 191 points while playing for the Fighting Sioux from 1984-88, has been head coach of the Lincoln Stars for 11 seasons.

The University of North Dakota women’s team has not had anywhere near the success of the men’s program -- and that's an understatement. In this, their fifth season, the team went 3-31-2 and fired head coach Shantel Rivard in December.

Interim coach Dennis Miller, along with Johnson, is a candidate for the vacant position. Other candidates include current men’s volunteer assistant Scott Koberinksi and Shattuck-St. Mary’s girls coach Gordie Stafford (father of Drew).  



All on the Line in Teeny-Tiny State

The Rhode Island Div. I finals between Mount St. Charles and Bishop Hendricken has come down to a winner-take-all third game Monday night at Providence College’s Schneider Arena. Game time is 7:30 pm.

The first game, Friday night, went to the Mount, as goaltender Luke Mayer kicked out 40 shots en route to shutting out Hendricken, the defending champs, 3-0.

Hendricken dominated the Mount throughout the game, outshooting them 40-12. The win broke Hendricken’s nearly two-season unbeaten streak against Rhode Island high school competition (39-0-1, with the only blip a 3-3 tie vs. the Mount in December).

In the second game, played last night, Hendricken came back from an early 3-0 deficit to take a 4-3 win over the Mount, in the process tying the series at a game apiece and setting up Monday’s deciding game.    

Mount St. Charles struck for three goals within the game’s first eight minutes, but were shut down the rest of the way. Hendricken tied it up with three second period goals and picked up the game winner when Connor Moore scored a power play goal at 1:36 of the third.

This is the 14th time in 26 years the two schools have met for the state championship. The Mount won the first 12 during their run of 26 straight state titles between 1978-2003.

Last year, Hendricken, coached by Jim Creamer, won its first state title and rolled on into this campaign, going 16-0-1 in the regular season. The Mount, meanwhile, lost five times in 17 regular season games. So the edge goes to Hendricken, but if Mayer can match his performance of Friday night, the hardware could return to the Mount.


Free Agent Signings

-- Vermont junior forward Torrey Mitchell will be foregoing his last season of college eligibility in order to sign with the San Jose Sharks.

Mitchell, a co-captain of the Catamounts, was UVM’s leading scorer this season with a 12-23-35 line.

A Montreal native, Mitchell played his prep hockey at Hotchkiss.

-- Wisconsin lost two underclassmen this week, as both sophomore forward Jack Skille and junior defenseman Joe Piskula turned pro.

Skille, a Madison native and first round draft pick signed a three-year contract with the Chicago Blackhawks. In 26 games, Skille, who also played with the U.S. National Junior team over the holidays, posted an 8-10-18 line.

Piskula, a 6’3” native of Antigo, Wisc. who played for Des Moines before heading to the Badgers, has signed a free agent contract with the LA Kings.

-- 6’2” Holy Cross senior defenseman Jon Landry signed a two-year entry level contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Because of his broken ankle (he missed the Crusaders last ten games), he will not be joining Syracuse (AHL). He will, however, be ready when training camp rolls around. 

Landry, a native of Lexington, Mass. who played his prep hockey at Nobles, was the Crusaders top-scoring d-man with a 9-18-27 line in 27 games played. 

-- 6’3” junior LW Kyle Greentree of Alaska-Fairbanks, a free agent, has signed with the Philadelphia Flyers. Greentree, a native of Victoria, BC, had a 21-21-42 line in 39 games for the Nanooks this season.

Greentree will be assigned to the Philadelphia Phantoms (AHL).    


A Goal Scorer for the Engineers 

Holy Angels senior forward Chase Polacek has committed to RPI for this fall.

A 5’8” right wing, Polacek was also recruited by Yale and Princeton. He’s a goal scorer, posting a 26-38-64 line this season.

Polacek is the second Holy Angels player in the Engineers upcoming freshman class, as he joins defenseman Bryan Brutlag.


DiGirolamo to UNH

Waterloo Black Hawks goaltender Matt DiGirolamo has committed to the University of New Hampshire for the fall of ’08.

At that time, current junior goaltender Kevin Regan will have graduated and Brian Foster will be a junior.

Top goaltenders, like pitchers in baseball, can pop up when and where you least expect it, and that’s the way it has been with DiGirolamo. A Philadelphia area native, he played for the Philadelphia Jr. Flyers but left home to play juniors with the Texas Tornado (NAHL) where, last year, he served as backup to Troy Redmann. He played just 11 games, but had good numbers – 2.44 gaa and .904 save percentage.

He was selected by Des Moines in last May’s USHL draft, but went to camp and didn’t make the team. He found a home in Waterloo, though, and played well right from the start. His stock has been on the rise ever since the start of the season.

An ’88, DiGirolamo is 5’11” and 175 lbs. At Waterloo, he has played 27 games and has a 2.49 gaa (1st in league) and a .909 save percentage (5th in league.)


Pereira Decommits; Consternation Ensues

South Kent School leading scorer Joe Pereira, a West Haven, Conn. native who committed to the University of Connecticut (Atlantic Hockey) last summer, has now decommitted. 

There are allegations that at least two Hockey East schools spoke to Pereira while he was committed to UConn.

Look for this to be a hot topic of discussion at April’s coaches convention. The whole topic of tampering with committed players has been brought up at the convention more than once before, but nothing has ever come of it.

Pereira, a 5’10”, 175 lb senior, finished the season at South Kent with a 25-25-50 line.



O’Brien to Join Under-18 Team After Season

6’2” University of Minnesota center Jimmy O’Brien will be joining the U.S. Under-18 Team in time for the World Under-18 Championship in Finland next month.

O’Brien thus becomes the first-ever collegian to suit up for the U.S. at the World Under-18’s.      

Other players head coach Ron Rolston is bringing in from outside the program are forward Patrick White, a Gopher recruit and RW at Grand Rapids HS; and defensemen Tommy Cross, a BC recruit from the Westminster School, and Ryan McDonagh, a Wisconsin recruit from Cretin-Derham Hall HS.


Cashman Cashes In

Quinnipiac captain and senior defenseman Reid Cashman has signed a free agent deal with the Toronto Maple Leafs for the rookie cap, and will be assigned to the Toronto Marlies (AHL).

Cashman, the top scoring d-man in the nation with a 3-38-41 line, completed his third straight 40-plus point season last weekend, as Quinnipiac bowed to Clarkson in the ECAC final at Lake Placid.

Cashman, who is 6’1” and 190 lbs., played at Red Wing (Minn.) High School and the Waterloo Black Hawks (USHL) before arriving at Quinnipiac.

3/21/07 Corrected

Wild Boar to Skate for Wildcats

6’1”, 185 lb. Choate forward Greg Manz has committed to the University of New Hampshire for this fall.

Manz, one of the fastest players in prep hockey and well-suited to the big sheet at UNH, was Choate’s second leading scorer this season, with a 17-13-30 line in 22 games played.

An ’88 from the Philadelphia area, Manz actually grew up in Connecticut, playing youth hockey in Wallingford and with the Mid-Fairfield organization. He came to Choate last year as a repeat junior.

A left shot, Manz played the off wing on a line centered by sophomore Connor Goggin, who has visited both UNH and BU.


In the paragraph above, we meant Mark Goggin. Connor is Mark's older brother, and is a junior defenseman at Choate. He, too, is a Div. I prospect. 



Ness Commits to Gophers

5’10” sophomore defenseman Aaron Ness of Roseau High, the Minnesota Class AA state champions, has committed to the University of Minnesota.

Ness, a left shot, has excellent offensive skills, as evidenced by his 13-35-48 line in 28 regular season games.

A pick of the Sioux Falls Musketeers in last summer’s USHL Futures Draft, Ness is a 5/90 birthdate and the son of Jay Ness, who played at the University of North Dakota in the early ‘80s.


Monarchs Repeat as EJHL Champs

Worcester, Mass. -- The New Hampshire Monarchs blanked the Bay State Breakers 6-0 tonight to sweep the best two-out-of-three EJHL Championship Series, held at Holy Cross.

The Monarchs, winners of the league crown last year as well, were led by James Mello, who made 44 saves in Game 1 Saturday night, a 5-0 win, and followed it up with a second shutout in Game 2 tonight, this time a 30-save effort. Over the two games here, Mello stopped all 74 shots he faced.

UNH recruit Paul Thompson spearheaded the Monarchs offensively tonight, putting his club on the board just 1:20 into the first and then adding two more for the natural hat trick as the Monarchs built up a 3-0 first period lead.

Nick DelGallo added a goal in the second, and Trevor Dodds and Zach Joy rounded out the scoring in the third.

Dennis Kearney had a pair of assists, as did Matt Germain, Eric Baier, and Jeff Fanning. DelGallo and Joy also each had one assist to go with their goal. 

Brooks Ostergard started in net for the Breakers and gave up one goal (on nine shots) before being replaced due to injury. Nick Krauss took over for the final 48 minutes and  allowed five goals on 29 shots.

The Monarchs are not done for the season, and neither are the Breakers. Both move on to the 2007 USA Hockey Tier III Jr. A National Championship, a four-team tournament which will be held next Mon.-Tues. March 26-27 at Walpole’s Iorio Arena. The other two representatives, the New York Bobcats and the Northern Cyclones, come from the Atlantic Junior Hockey League.

Earlier this afternoon, at Harvard’s Bright Arena, the New York Bobcats blanked the Northern Cyclones, 5-0, to take the AJHL crown. 


Fairfield Prep Wins Connecticut High School Title

Senior captain Jonathan Cox’s wraparound goal 4:16 into overtime lifted Fairfield Prep to a 3-2 win over cross-town rival Notre Dame-Fairfield in the Connecticut Div. I title game before a standing-room only crowd of 4,000 at Yale’s Ingalls Rink on Saturday night.

The win gave Fairfield Prep its third state title in the last four years, and twelfth overall (since 1977). In addition, Fairfield Prep (19-3-1) finished the season undefeated in Connecticut high school competition. The Jesuits only losses on the season were to Bishop Guertin (NH state champion), Catholic Memorial, and BC High (Mass. Super 8 champions).


Junior Bruins Win Empire League Title

The Boston Junior Bruins beat the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs, 4-2, to win the Empire Junior Hockey League championship Sunday at RPI.  Both teams will advance to Nationals to compete for the Silver Cup in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Steve Morra led the Junior Bruins with two power play goals and John Henrion had a goal and two assists.

The Junior Bruins, skating with a 5-on-3 advantage, went up 1-0 when Morra found the back of the net at the 19:01 mark of the first half, assists going to Henrion and Evan Gogonis.  The Bruins outshot the Monarchs 18-6 in the first half -- Monarchs goaltender Connor Shannon kept his team in it with 17 saves. (The title game was played in 25-minute halves, a decision based the fact that the two finalists had each already played a round-robin game in the morning.)

The goals came quickly in the second half. Henrion, off a nice set up by Cory Kane, made it 2-0 at the 2:42 mark.

Jay Pietrasiak put the Monarchs on the board with a powerplay goal at the 10:58 mark. Monarchs goaltender Shannon picked up an assist on the goal.

Morra then scored his second -- from Henrion and Gogonis again -- to make it 3-1 at the 15:42 mark.

Pietrasiak scored his second goal of the game with exactly two minutes to play, cutting the Junior Bruins lead to 3-2.

With 41 seconds left to play, the Junior Bruins’ Joey Dillon found Paul Cinquegrana who scored an empty netter to make it 4-2 – and that’s where things ended.

Connor Knapp was in net for the Junior Bruins and kicked out 24 shots en route to picking up the win. Knapp finished the playoffs with a 5-0 record, and led all goalies with 1.24 GAA and was second in save percentage with a .959 mark. Teammmate Clay Witt was second with a 1.33 GAA, but finished with a playoff leading .965 save percentage.

Morra led all playoff scorers with 18 points in eight games on a 10-8-18 line.


The Sunday morning game was a wild one.  In the final round-robin game, the Monarchs went up against NY Apple Core. Whoever won -- or if Apple Core tied -- would not only move on to face the Junior Bruins in the finals, but also be guaranteed a berth at Nationals.  The Monarchs won, 5-4, in a game that featured a batch of lead changes and a four-goal game from Pietrasiak, who scored six of the Monarch’s seven goals on the day.



BC High Repeat Champs in Mass Super 8

BC High won the 2007 Mass Super 8 Tournament, their second straight, with a decisive 6-1 win over Weymouth High at the TD Banknorth Garden tonight.

Weymouth got on the board first, on a Mike Wilson goal at 9:26 of the first, and held a 1-0 lead until BC High senior defenseman Mike Vasilchuk scored  a power play goal 6:09 into the second to tie it at 1-1.

That started the onslaught. BC High would add two more goals before the end of the period, and then three more in the third.

BC High’s goals came off the sticks of six different players, and the Eagles outshot Weymouth 26-12. Junior Joe Cannata got the win, stopping 11 of 12. Sophomore Chris Daugherty stopped 20 of 26 for Weymouth. Daugherty didn’t get much help from his teammates, who struggled to clear rebounds or slow the BC High forwards.

Nonetheless, we can’t take anything away from Weymouth, the Cinderella team which defeated four parochial schools – Malden Catholic, Catholic Memorial, Central Catholic, Austin Prep – and became the first public school to reach the title game since Shawn Bates led Medford to the Garden in 1993. While Weymouth fell short in the end, they brought a much-needed breath of life to the postseason, bringing an end to the tournament’s Catholic hegemony and capturing the attention of Boston-area fans in the process.  


-- To get to the finals, BC High edged Catholic Memorial, 1-0, and Weymouth came back from a 3-1 deficit to beat Austin Prep 5-4 in an OT thriller. Both of those games were played in Thursday night’s crossover at Harvard’s Bright Arena in front of a jam-packed house. People were really shoe-horned in, as standees were lined up four deep around the rink and fans had to park up to a mile away and hoof their way over. And it was loud, very loud. No one who played in it will forget it. It’s safe to say that next year’s crossover will be played in a larger venue – the Boston fire marshall will insist on it.

-- For BC High, tonight’s win capped off a nice weekend, as the school’s basketball team won the Mass Div. I title in Worcester Saturday night.

-- In the tournament’s 17-year history, only three teams have won it – Catholic Memorial, BC High, and Arlington Catholic. 


Beantown Spring Classic List

The following is the list of players who have committed to play in next week’s Beantown Classic, which will run Wed. through Fri. March 21-23 at the New England Sports Center in Marlboro, Mass.

There will be one game Wednesday at 8:00 pm, nine games on Thursday starting at 1:00 pm, and three on Friday starting at 1:00 pm. 

The list is 99% done, meaning there may be a handful of additions/deletions before then.

Draft Division (’87-‘88-’89 birthdates)

Patch Alber, D, Northwood
Cam Atkinson, F, Avon Old Farms
Tom Atkinson, F, Avon Old Farms
Eric Baier, D, NH Jr. Monarchs
Andy Balysky, F, Taft
Mike Baran, D, Thayer
Nick Bonino, F, Avon Old Farms
Yuri Bouharevich, F, St. Paul’s School
Peter Boyd, F, Northwood
Francois Brisebois, F, St. Paul’s School
Nick Broadwater, G, Portland Jr. Pirates
Josh Burrows, D, Junior Bruins
Cameron Burt, D, NE Huskies
Matt Campanale, D, Green Mountain
Chris Cannizzaro, F, Syracuse Stars
Paul Carey, F, Salisbury
Peter Child, D, St. Paul’s School
Ryan Craig, F, Jersey Hitmen
Ryan Criscuolo, D, Junior Bruins
Patrick Cullen, F, Washington Jr. Nationals
Alan Dionne, D, Junior Bruins
Mike Doherty, F, Exeter
Jonathan Dwyer, F, Exeter
Egor Egorov, F, NE Huskies
Nicholas Eno, G, Green Mountain Glades
Bobby Farnham, F, Andover
Brian Flynn, F, Pomfret
Brian Gibbons, F, Salisbury
Connor Goggin, D, Choate
Artem Gumenyuk, D, South Kent School
Jordan Hennick, D, St. Andrew’s
Adam Houli, F, Gunnery
George Hughes, D, Taft
Adam Kaiser, F, Hotchkiss
Herbie Kent, F, Governor Dummer
Alex Killorn, F, Deerfield
Jake Klancher, F, Cap District Selects
Pasha Kozhokin, D, Canterbury
Bobby Kramer, F, Taft
Bryan Kriner, F, Portsmouth Abbey
Cam Lanoue, F, St. Paul’s
Andrew Letellier, F, Portland Jr. Pirates
Drew MacKenzie, D, Taft
Matt Marshall, F, Nobles
Peter Massar, F, Hotchkiss
James Mello, G, NH Jr. Monarchs
P-O Michaud, F, Portland Jr. Pirates
Christian Morissette, F, St. Andrew’s
Steve Morra, F, Junior Bruins
Stephen Moses, F, Junior Bruins
Kevin Nugent, F, Taft
Dillon O’Hara, D, South Kent
Josh Rabbani, F, Berkshire
Dan Reed, D, Salisbury
Phillippe Ringuette, F, St. Andrew’s
Oleksandr Romanenko, D, Hebron
Jeff Ryan, F, St. George’s
Edwin Shea, D, Junior Bruins
Billy Silengo, D, Holderness
Justin Smith, F, NE Jr. Falcons
Austin Smith, F, Gunnery
Kyle Solomon, F, Junior Bruins
Sergei Sorokolat, G, South Kent School
Karel Svoboda, D, Tabor
TJ Syner, F, NE Jr. Falcons
PJ Tatum, F, Gunnery
Connor Toomey, G, St. Sebastian’s
Mike Vasilchuk, D, BC High
Jeff Velleca, F, NE Jr. Falcons
Wes Vesprini, G, Junior Bruins
Mike White, D, Junior Bruins
Jonathan Wolter, D, Junior Bruins
John Yanchek, G, Hotchkiss

Pre-Draft Division (’90-’91-’92 birthdates)

Mark  Anthoine, F, Portland Jr. Pirates
Billy Arnold, F, Fessenden
Derek Arnold, F, Junior Bruins
Chris Brown, F, St. Sebastian’s
Justin Bruckel, F, Syracuse Stars
Casey Brugman, F, Cushing
Jeff Buvinow, D, Gunnery
Jack Callahan, D, NJ Rockets
Zach Carriveau, D, Portland Jr. Pirates
Bass Chadwick, F, Portland Jr. Pirates
Micheal Chaisson, D, Las Vegas Outlaws
Mike Cichy, F, Junior Bruins
Erick Cinotti, G, NJ Rockets
Paul Cinquegrana, F, Junior Bruins
Justin Clouatre, F, Portland Jr. Pirates
Matt Crowley, F, Conn. Jr. Wolves
Joey Dillon, D, Junior Bruins
Paul Dimitruk, D, Exeter
Danny Federico, D, Junior Bruins
Billy Fitzgerald, D, BB&N
Tyler Fleurent, F, Biddeford HS
Nick Foy, F, Junior Bruins
Thomas Freyre, D, New Canaan
Dan Furlong, D, Catholic Memorial
Mark Goggin, F, Choate
Evan Gogonis, D, Junior Bruins
Shane Gorman, F, Gunnery
Rich Greer, D, Thayer
Logan Gregoire, F, Green Mt. Glades
Kevin Hayes, F, Nobles
John Henrion, F, Junior Bruins
Victor Heselton, Salisbury
Dominic Jancaterino, F, St. Sebastian’s
Cory Kane, F, Junior Bruins
Ryan Kavanaugh, D, Tabor
Connor Knapp, G, Junior Bruins
Taylor Kuypers, D, Edgewood
Ryan Lazarus, G, NY Apple Core
Sean Logue, F, Foxboro Stars
Nick Lovejoy, D, Deerfield
Taylor Luneau, F, Green Mt. Glades
Justin Mansfield, F, Junior Bruins
TJ Massie, G, Cushing
Brendan McCarron, F, St. John’s –Shrewsbury
Sean McLaughlin, F, Junior Bruins
Jack McNamara, F, Belmont Hill
Jonathan Mleczko, F, Milton Academy
Jason Molle, F, Lawrence Academy
Patrick Mullane, F, Avon Old Farms
Justin Murray, D, Pontiac Lions
Justin Oberlander, F, Portland Jr. Pirates
Trevor Parisian, F, Thousand Islands HS
Adam Pawlick, F, Salisbury
Michael Petchonka, G, Brunswick School
Brendan Rempel, D, Pomfret
Jeff Repucci, D, Exeter
Eric Robinson, F, Foxboro Stars
Connor Shannon, G, NH Jr. Monarchs
Colin Shea, D, Junior Bruins
Jeff Silengo, F, Holderness
John Sperzel, F, Foxboro Stars
Daniel Szerlip, F, Valley Jr. Warriors
Jordan Thomas, F, Conn. Wolves
Sean Wallace, D, Syracuse Stars
Clay Witt, G, Junior Bruins
Gus Young, D, Nobles
Matt Zarbo, F, Junior Bruins


Hobey Baker Finalists Named

There is no clear cut Hobey Baker Award favorite among the skaters this year, so look for it the prize to go to a goaltender, perhaps Notre Dame senior David Brown or BU senior John Curry.

Here is the full list. It will be trimmed to three finalists on March 28, and the winner will be announced in St. Louis on Fri. April 6, as part of the Frozen Four festivities.

Drew Bagnall, senior D, St. Lawrence
David Brown, senior G, Notre Dame
John Curry, senior G, Boston University
Nathan Davis, junior F, Miami University
Ryan Duncan, sophomore F, North Dakota
Eric Ehn, junior F, Air Force
Bobby Goepfert, senior G, St. Cloud State
T.J. Hensick, senior F, Michigan
David Jones, junior F, Dartmouth
Scott Parse, senior F, Nebraska-Omaha



NTDP Tryout Roster

The NTDP tryouts get underway this weekend in Ann Arbor, Mich., with scrimmages on Sun.-Mon.-Tues. March 18-20. All players are ‘91s, except for the three noted below.


Sam Alfieri (Buffalo, NY; Shattuck-St. Mary's Under-16)
Tyler Brickler (Riverwoods, Ill.; Chicago Mission Under-16)
Zach Budish (Edina, Minn.; Edina HS)
Jerry D'Amigo (Binghamton, N.Y.; Binghamton Jr. B Senators)
Ryan Daughtery (Allen, Texas; Dallas Alliance Under-16)
Michael Fink (Minnetonka, Minn. - Hopkins HS) – ‘90
Tyler Maxwell (Redondo Beach, Calif.; LA Selects Under-16)
Nick Oliver (Roseau, Minn.; Roseau HS)
Tyler Pitlick (Centerville, Minn.; Centennial HS)
Kenny Ryan (Franklin, Mich.; Honeybaked Under-16)
Zach Tatrn (Lower Burrell, Pa.; Pittsburgh Predators Under-16)
David Valek (unable to participate due to injury)
Steven Whitney (Reading, Mass.; Lawrence Academy)

Tyler Amburgey (Rowlett, Texas; Texas Attack Under-18)
Sam Calabrese (Park Ridge, Ill.; Team Illinois Under-18)
Richie Crowley (Canton, Mass.; Thayer Academy)
Cam Fowler (Northville, Mich.; Honeybaked Under-16)
Seth Helgeson (Faribault, Minn.; Faribault HS) – ‘90
Ben Hughes (Jacksonville, Fla.; Shattuck St. Mary's Under-16)
Paul Phillips (Darien, Ill.; Chicago Chill Under-18)
Brendan Rempel (Willington, Conn.; Pomfret School)
Philip Samuelsson (Scottsdale, Ariz.; PF Chang's Under-16 (Ariz.))

Hudson Stremmel (Reno, Nev.; California Northstars Under-18)
Clay Witt (Brandon, Fla.; Boston Junior Bruins – Empire League )
Jeff Teglia (Bloomingdale, Ill.; Chicago Mission Under-16)


Ryan Bourque (Topsfield, Mass.; Cushing Academy)
Chris Brown (Flower Mound, Texas; Honeybaked Under-16)
Dakota Eveland (Anaheim, Calif.; LA Selects Under-16)
John Henrion (Holden, Mass.; Boston Junior Bruins – Empire League)
Kevin Lynch (Grosse Point Woods, Mich.; Honeybaked Under-16)
Jeremy Morin (Auburn, N.Y.; Syracuse Stars)
Cody Murphy (Highwood, Ill.; Team Illinois Under-18)
Kyle Palmieri (Montvale, N.J.; NJ Devils Under-16)
Drew Shore (Cherry Hills Village, Co.; Honeybaked Under-16)
A.J. Treais (unable to participate due to injury)
Ryan Walters (Rosemount, Minn.; St. Thomas Academy)
Matt White (McMurray, Pa.; Pittsburgh Hornets Under-16)
Joe Zarbo (Grand Island, N.Y.; Rochester Americans)

Bjorn Krupp (Atlanta, Ga.; TPH Thunder)
Nick Mattson (Chanhassen, Minn.; Chaska HS)
John Ramage (Chesterfield, Mo.; St. Louis Amateur Blues Under-18)
Nate Schmidt (St. Cloud, Minn.; St. Cloud Cathedral HS)
Beau Schmitz (Howell, Mich.; Belle Tire Under-16)
David Shields (Rochester, N.Y.; Rochester Americans Jr. B)
Brad Walch (Saginaw, Mich.; Honeybaked Under-16)
William Wrenn (Anchorage, Alaska; LA Selects Under-16)

Joe Cannata (Wakefield, Mass.; Boston College HS) ‘90
Brandon Maxwell (Winter Park, Fla.; Cambridge Hawks Minor)
C.J. Motte (St. Clair, Mich.; Honeybaked Under-16)


Princeton’s Westgarth Signs with LA

Princeton’s 6’4”, 235 lb. senior RW Kevin Westgarth has signed with the Los Angeles Kings and will report to the Manchester Monarchs, the Kings AHL affiliate, on Friday.

Westgarth, who reportedly got a cap deal, was Princeton’s fourth leading scorer this season with a 8-16-24 line in 33 games. A psychology major, he’s said to be a good fighter, something he’ll be likely to be called on for. A native of Amherstburg, Ontario, Westgarth played his junior hockey Chatham Maroons (Western Jr. B).


2006-07 USHR Prep Forward of the Year

* Nick Bonino, Senior, Avon Old Farms *

Bonino, a Boston University recruit from Farmington, Conn., finished the season with a 22-43-65 line in 28 games. A 6'1" center, Bonino, who has great hands, an excellent shot, and was the go-to guy on the team that won the New England prep title, won this award by a comfortable margin.

Runners Up:

Austin Smith, Sr., Gunnery (Colgate, after a PG year in the BCHL)
Alex Killorn, Jr., Deerfield (Harvard)
Cam Atkinson, Jr., Avon Old Farms (BC)
Broc Little, F, Cushing (Yale)


2006-07 USHR Prep Defenseman of the Year

* Dave Warsofsky, sophomore, Cushing Academy *

Warsofsky, a Boston University recruit from North Marshfield, Mass., finished the season as the leading-scoring defenseman in Div. I with a 15-34-49 line in 29 games. Highly-skilled, with great hands, vision, and passing ability, Warsofsky won this award by the closest of margins, as Westminster’s Tommy Cross was right on his heels. Belmont Hill’s Kevin McNamara also gained a lot of votes.

Runners Up:

Tommy Cross, Jr., Westminster (BC)
Kevin McNamara, Sr., Belmont Hill (Colgate)
Drew McKenzie, Jr., Taft (uncommitted)
Ken Trentowski, Sr., Avon Old Farms (Yale)


2006-07 USHR Prep Goaltender of the Year

* John Muse, Senior, Noble & Greenough *

Without Muse, a Boston College recruit from Falmouth, Mass., Nobles might not have even reached the playoffs. Once there, Muse shut the door on Cushing in the quarterfinals, enabling his team to get to Salem. The vote for goaltender turned out to be close as well, with Belmont Hill’s Matt Gedman finishing a strong second.

Runner Up: 

Matt Gedman, Sr., Belmont Hill (UMass, for baseball)


Voting began March 3rd and continued until a consensus was arrived at, which really didn’t take that long. The voters consisted of prep and college coaches, and pro scouts. 



Empire League Final Four Set

The Empire League Final Four will be held in Troy, New York at RPI's Houston Field House this weekend. The Junior Bruins, Pittsburgh Junior Penguins, New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs, and New York Applecore will play a round robin, with the top two teams moving on to Sunday afternoon’s championship game. The two teams that reach the finals will also be representing the Empire League at the Tier II Junior 'B' Silver Cup Championship to be held in Grand Rapids March 29-April 2.

A few miles south of Troy, in Albany, the ECAC will be holding its tournament, so there’s hockey to be seen in the capital area.

Here are the seedings:

1. Junior Bruins
2. Pittsburgh Junior Penguins
3. New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs
4. New York Applecore

Fri. March  16th
4:00 pm @ RPI  -- Applecore at Junior Bruins
7:00 pm @ RPI  -- New Hampshire at Pittsburgh

Sat. March   17th
12:00 pm @ RPI  -- New Hampshire  at Junior Bruins
3:00 pm   @ RPI  -- Applecore at Pittsburgh 

Sun. March   18th
9:00 am @ RPI  -- Pittsburgh at Junior Bruins
9:00 am @ The Big Arena -- Applecore at New Hampshire

4:00 pm  @ RPI -- Championship Game


Bishop Guertin Wins NH State Title

Bishop Guertin edged Bishop Brady, 2-1, to take the New Hampshire Div. I state title before 1,600 fans at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester on Sunday.

The Cardinals got both their goals early in the first period, by Zachary Bradanick and Eric Harries. After that, Bishop Brady asserted themselves, and got on the board at the 1:30 mark of the second when Brooks Herrington beat Guertin goaltender Taylor Woods.

Bishop Brady outshot Bishop Guertin 10-3 in the final period, and 21-19 in the game, but couldn’t get the puck past Woods for the equalizer.

For Bishop Guertin, coached by Gary Bishop, the win brought the school its fourth state title, three of which have come since 2000. Guertin finished the season 23-1. In addition to winning the state title, the squad topped LaSalle (RI), St. Joseph’s (Buffalo, NY), and Fairfield Prep en route to taking the championship of the Mount St. Charles Tournament over Christmas break.

In Div. II, Spaulding edged Oyster River, 3-2.


McDonagh Wins Mr. Hockey

Cretin-Derham Hall defenseman Ryan McDonagh was named Mr. Hockey Sunday.

McDonagh, 6’1 and 190 lbs., helped lead Cretin to a state title in 2006, the school’s first in hockey. The Arden Hill, Minn. native was initially recruited to Wisconsin for the fall of ’08, but that timetable was moved up. Bypassed for the US NTDP before his junior year, McDonagh was asked to join the Under-18s for his senior year, but chose to stay at Cretin-Derham Hall and attempt to defend the school’s title. Cretin, however, was upset by Woodbury HS in the sectionals.

McDonagh, likely to go in the first couple rounds of June’s NHL draft, will join the U.S. Under-18 Team for next month’s world championship in the Czech Republic.

McDonagh is also a center fielder for Cretin-Derham Hall, a baseball powerhouse that has won ten state titles and boasts Joe Mauer and Paul Molitor as alumni.

The Mr. Hockey Award is given to the top senior in the state and is picked by a panel of Minnesota Div. I coaches and NHL scouts.

Mr. Hockey Award Finalists – 2007

Jordy Christian, F, Moorhead
Mike Dorr, F, Roseville
Tyler Johnson, F, Cloquet
Nick Larson, F, Hill-Murray
John Lee, D, Moorhead
Aaron Marvin, F, Warroad
Taylor Matson, F, Holy Angels
Ryan McDonagh, D, Cretin-Derham Hall
Matt Reber, F, Edina
Patrick White, F, Grand Rapids

Past Mr. Hockey Award Winners

2006 – David Fischer, Apple Valley
2005 – Brian Lee, Moorhead
2004 – Tom Gorowsky, Centennial
2003 – Nate Dey, North St. Paul
2002 – Gino Guyer, Greenway-Coleraine
2001 – Marty Sertich, Roseville
2000 – Paul Martin, Elk River
1999 – Jeff Taffe, Hastings
1998 – Johnny Pohl, Red Wing
1997 – Aaron Miskovich, Grand Rapids
1996 – Dave Spehar, Duluth East
1995 – Erik Rasmussen, St. Louis Park
1994 – Mike Crowley, Bloomington Jefferson
1993 – Nick Checco, Bloomington Jefferson
1992 – Brian Bonin, White Bear Lake
1991 – Darby Hendrickson, Richfield
1990 – Joe Dziedzic, Minneapolis Edison
1989 – Trent Klatt, Osseo
1988 – Larry Olimb, Warroad
1987 – Kris Miller, Greenway-Coleraine
1986 – George Pelawa, Bemidji
1985 – Tom Chorske, Minneapolis Southwest



Roseau Wins Record Seventh Minnesota State Title

Tyler Landman
scored a pair of goals and sophomore goaltender Mike Lee kicked out 28 shots to lead Roseau to a 5-1 win over Grand Rapids in the Class AA title game at the Xcel Energy Center tonight. 

The win, a rematch of the 1990 state final – also won by Roseau – gave the Rams a record seventh state title.

Ben Johnson had a goal and an assist and Ryan Larsen and Nick Oliver each had a goal for Roseau.

The Rams, who complete the season with a 29-2 record, focused on Grand Rapids star forward Patrick White, the tournament’s dominant player entering the game, keeping  him off the scoreboard.


Thurs. March 8 @ the Xcel Energy Center:

Quarterfinals --
Roseau 7, Woodbury 2
Rochester Century 6, Hill-Murray 5 (OT)
Grand Rapids 3, Edina 1
Burnsville 4, Blaine 2 

Fri. March 9 @ the Xcel Energy Center:

Semifinals --
Roseau 3, Rochester Century 1
Grand Rapids 4, Burnsville 3 (OT)

Sat. March 10 @ the Xcel Energy Center:

Finals --
Roseau 5, Grand Rapids 1


Hermantown  Takes Class A Crown

Hermantown High, behind a 32-save performance from senior goalie Nathan Hardy, topped Duluth Marshall, 4-1, to take the Class AA Minnesota State title this afternoon at the Xcel Energy Center.

For Hermantown, which finished the season undefeated at 29-0-1, it was their first state title.

Hermantown is a northern suburb of Duluth and is about a 10-minute ride from Duluth Marshall.


Wed. March 7 @ the Xcel Energy Center:

Quarterfinals --
Saint Thomas Academy 5, Orono 2
Duluth Marshall 6, Blake 3
Hermantown 6, Little Falls 3
Fri. March 9 @ the Xcel Energy Center:

Semifinals --
Duluth Marshall 3, Saint Thomas Academy 2 (2 OT)
Hermantown 4, Warroad 3
Sat. March 10 @ the Xcel Energy Center:

Finals --

Hermantown 4, Duluth Marshall 1



Midwest Prep Invitational Scoreboard

-- at Culver Academy; Culver, Indiana

Sun. March 11:

Championship Game:
Shattuck-St. Mary’s 4, Culver 1

3rd Place Game:
Northwood 9, Lake Forest Academy 4

5th Place Game:
St. Andrew’s College 8, Wyoming Seminary 3

7th Place Game:
Upper Canada College 3, Calgary Edge School 2


Mass. Super 8 Down to 4

Mass Super 8 round robin play was completed this afternoon and evening at Tsongas Arena in Lowell. Here are the results:

BC High 3, St. John’s Prep  1
Austin Prep 5, Reading 1
Weymouth 5, Central Catholic 2
Catholic Memorial 5, Malden Catholic 1

(Weymouth and BC High were the winners in their respective brackets; Austin Prep and CM were the runners-up.)

The winners advance to Thursday’s Super 8 crossover round, which will take place this Thursday (March 15) at Harvard University’s Bright Arena.

The matchups will be:

Catholic Memorial vs. BC High
Weymouth vs. Austin Prep

When they are announced, we’ll update this article with game times.

The winners will advance to the finals Sunday March 18 at TD Banknorth Garden.



Monarchs, Breakers Advance to EJHL Finals

For each of the last three seasons, the New Hampshire Junior Monarchs have faced off against the Boston Junior Bruins for the EJHL Championship.

That won’t be the case this year, as the Bay State Breakers crashed the party, knocking off the Junior Bruins 1-0 on an overtime goal by Dan Nelson tonight at the New England Sports Center in Marlborough, Mass.

The Breakers will face the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs in a best-of-three championship round scheduled for Sat-Sun.-Mon. March 17-18-19 at Holy Cross. Game times are 5:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. If a third game is  necessary it will be played Monday at 7:00 pm.  

The Monarchs, in today’s early game, dropped a 4-3 overtime decision to the New England Junior Huskies, but came back and won the mini game, 3-0, to take the series.

We’ll get to that, but first a few words about the Junior Bruins-Bay State Breakers game. The salient fact was that, while the Junior Bruins outshot the Breakers 14-6 in the first period and 9-8 in the second, they couldn’t put them away. The keys were the goaltending of Bay State’s Brooks Ostergard, an ’87 from Ohio who came up big when needed, and also got help from his teammates, who did a good job keeping the Junior Bruins to the outside, holding down their scoring opportunities, and limiting odd-man rushes.  The Junior Bruins didn’t have a lot of quality scoring opportunities, but on the ones they did have Ostergard was up to the task.

“Their goaltender played fantastic,” said Junior Bruins head coach Peter Masters. “I thought they also did a good job on the penalty kill – our power play, which was second in the league this season, was ineffective today. During the regular season we were carried offensively by Coyle, Solomon, Moses, and Pallos, but they struggled to score today – and we didn’t get on the scoreboard.”

“Bay State worked hard. They have solid D and two lines of kids who can make things happen. The question was goaltending. And it was answered. (Ostergard) was great both yesterday and today.”

“In the past few years,” Masters added, “there have been a couple of dominant teams in the league. What these semifinals have shown is that the next level has closed the gap and made things more competitive. It’s good for the league to have more parity.”

In the Monarchs-Junior Huskies game, the Huskies went up 1-0 late in the first period on an Egor Egorov goal. The Monarchs came back in the second, taking a 2-1 lead on a pair of goals by Denny Kearney. However, the Huskies tied it up at 1:25 of the third on a power play goal by Cameron Burt, an ’87 from Michigan who was a standout today, as was goalie Joe Calvi, a Bentley recruit. In OT, the Huskies won it, forcing the mini-game. The Huskies played a strong physical game and outworked the Monarchs along the boards, but when they got to the mini-game they didn’t really have much left. The deeper Monarchs were able to roll three lines while the Huskies, needing just to get to the mini game, played their top two lines more heavily than they normally would have. The legs weren’t there, and the Monarchs rolled to a 3-0 win.    



AJHL Semifinals Set

The Washington Jr. Nationals and the Binghamton Jr. Senators emerged from this weekend’s preliminary and quarterfinals rounds, played in Hudson, NH, and will face off against the  New York Bobcats and Northern Cyclones, the two bye teams, this coming weekend at Harvard’s Bright Arena.


Sat. March 10:
Boston Bulldogs 4, Hartford  Jr. Wolfpack 2
Portland Jr. Pirates 4, Walpole Express 2
Binghamton Jr. Senators 4, Philadelphia Little Flyers 3
Washington Jr. Nationals 5, New Jersey Rockets 4

Sun. March 11:
Washington Jr. Nationals 3, Boston Bulldogs 2
Binghamton Jr. Senators 5, Portland Jr. Pirates 0


Sat. March 17 @ Harvard University
11:30 am – Northern Cyclones vs. Binghamton Jr. Senators
2:30 pm – NY Bobcats vs. Washington Jr. Nationals

Sun. March 17 @ Harvard University
12:00 pm – Championship Game


3/10/07 Updated

EJHL Semis This Weekend

The EJHL tournament continues this weekend with the semifinals – two games plus a mini game (if  necessary) -- at the New England Sports Center in Marlboro, Mass.

In the quarterfinals last weekend, the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs beat the Foxboro Stars 4-1 and 7-2. The New England Jr. Huskies beat the Bridgewater Bandits 3-0 and 6-3. The Bay State Breakers split with the Valley Junior Warriors, winning 5-2 and losing 7-5, but won the mini-game, 1-0, to advance. Ditto for the Junior Bruins. They split with NY Apple Core, winning 4-2 and losing 2-0, but took the mini game 2-1 to advance .

Here are the matchups for this weekend, Two times are given. The first is for today (Sat. 3/10) and the second is for tomorrow (Sun. 3/11).

#1 New Hampshire Monarchs vs. #4 New England Jr. Huskies (4:00 pm; 1:00 pm)
#2 Junior Bruins vs. #3 Bay State Breakers (7:00 pm; 4:00 pm)


EJHL Sat. Scores:

Monarchs 4, Huskies 3 -- Huskies went up 3-0 on a Paul Snell goal -- his second of the period -- at 8:13 of the second. Monarchs goaltender Patrick Galbraith was pulled and replaced by James Mello, who shut out Huskies for the final 31:47, during which time the Monarchs scored four unanswered goals -- by Paul Thompson (ppg), Ian O'Connor, Ryan Miniaci, and Tom Pizzo. Monarchs outshot the Huskies 42-26. Calvi (38 saves) was in net for the Huskies.   

Junior Bruins 2, Bay State 2 -- Bruins went up 2-0 on goals by Kyle Solomon and Stevie Moses, but the Breakers came back with a pair by Ryan Flanigan. Junior Bruins outshot Huskies 39-28. Vesprini (26 saves) was in net for the Junior Bruins; Ostergard (37 saves) for the Breakers.  


Midwest Prep Tournament Scoreboard

-- at Culver Academy; Culver, Indiana

Fri. March 9:

Shattuck 3, Calgary Edge 1
Northwood 3, St. Andrew’s 2
Wyoming Seminary 5, Upper Canada College 1
Culver 8, Lake Forest Academy 4

Sat. March 10:

Shattuck 6, St. Andrew’s 2
Northwood 4, Calgary Edge 2
Lake Forest Academy 6, Upper Canada College 2
Culver 6, Wyoming Seminary 1

St. Andrew’s 1, Calgary Edge 1 (St. Andrew’s wins SO)
Shattuck 4, Northwood 0
Culver 7, Upper Canada College 2

Sun. March 11:

Championship Game: Culver vs. Shattuck, 12:00 pm
3rd Place Game: Lake Forest vs. Northwood, 12:00 pm
5th Place Game: Wyoming Seminary vs. St. Andrew’s College, 9:15 am
7th Place Game: Upper Canada College vs. Calgary Edge


Empire League Hands Out the Hardware

The Empire Jr. B League has announced its award winners, voted on by league members (either the coach or GM of each team).

The Junior Bruins, under coaches Chris Masters, Andy Powers, and Pat Nugent, finished with the loop's best overall record. Withe 15 new players on the roster, the Junior B's went 40-3-1, their second 40-win season in a row.

MVP: Scott Estey-Brewster Bulldogs
Finalists: John Henrion (Junior Bruins) and Kurt Washnock (Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins)

Best Defenseman: Mike Kavanaugh-Brewster Bulldogs
Finalists: Kevin Bishop (Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins) and Evan Gogonis (Junior Bruins)

Best Forward: Scott Estey-Brewster Bulldogs
Finalists: Kurt Washnock (Pittsburgh Jr. Pens) and Derek Arnold (Junior Bruins)

Best Goalie: Connor Knapp-Junior Bruins
Finalists: Ian O'Brien (Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins) and Nick Therrien (NH Jr. Monarchs)

Coach of the Year: Dan Serakowski-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins
Finalists: Chris Masters (Junior Bruins) and Ryan Frew (NH Junior Monarchs)

National Conference

1st Team All Conference
F-Derek Arnold-Junior Bruins
F-John Henrion-Junior Bruins
F-Steve Morra-Junior Bruins
D-Evan Gogonis-Junior Bruins
D-Alex Hoffman-Bay State Breakers
G-Connor Knapp-Junior Bruins

2nd Team All Conference
F-Seth McQuade-NH Jr. Monarchs
F-Pat Fitzgibbons-Foxboro Stars
F-Ryan Walsh-Fitchburgh Huskies
D-Levi Grant-NH Jr. Monarchs
D-Justin Stokes-Fitchburgh Huskies
G-Drew Roeder-Fitchburgh Huskies
G-Nick Therrien-NH Jr. Monarchs

American Conference

1st Team All Conference
F-Scott Estey-Brewster Bulldogs
F-Kurt Washnock-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins
F-John Hero-Jersey Wildcats
D-Kevin Bishop-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins
D-Mike Kavanaugh-Brewster Bulldogs
D-Alex Dzieliski-Maksymum
G-Ian O'Brien-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins

2nd Team All Conference
F-Nick Rostek-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins
F-Shane Stockton-Maksymum
F-Andrew Churchill-Applecore
D-Danny LaBarbera-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins
D-Phil Cascio-Applecore
G-Shane Talarico-Pittsburgh Jr. Penguins
G-Josh Ofner-Jersey Wildcats



Daugherty In the Spotlight

It’s that time of year – for the second day in a row, the Boston Globe has a good story on schoolboy hockey. This time, it’s Jackie MacMullan writing about Chris Daugherty , the Weymouth High goalie who led his team to a 2-1 win over #1 seed Catholic Memorial last Sunday.

Boston Globe story on Chris Daugherty


P.O. to Harvard

P.O. Michaud, who committed to Harvard this week, couldn’t speak English three years ago, but that didn’t stop him from moving to Maine from his native Quebec to play with the Portland Junior Pirates Jr. B team. The next year he moved up to the Junior Pirates AJHL team, where he is now in his second year.

The big difference between this year and last – and the reason Harvard made their offer – is the fact that Michaud is not only a good student and a quick study when it comes to English, but that he has turned from being an excellent offensive player into a player who competes hard in all three zones.

“His skill, his vision, and his patience with the puck are great,” said Portland president/GM Sean O’Brien. “He makes plays and finds seams… (head coach Jay Pecora) and I are on the bench saying ’How did he find that?’ The thing he’s really learned over the past two seasons, though, is how to play away from the puck.”

A June ’88 birthdate, Michaud, who has great open ice speed, is Portland’s top scorer with a 26-39-65 line in 42 games. He’s eligible for June’s NHL draft and is ranked 202nd among North American skaters in Central Scouting’s midterm ranking. He’s worked hard on getting stronger,  a process that will continue.

Michaud, who is 5’11” and 175 lbs., is primarily a center, but is also frequently on the wing.  In ’03-04, when he was 15, he was playing for the Quebec Bulldogs Midget AAA squad, coached by Allain Lachance, whose son Jonathan, now at Norwich, was playing for the Portland Jr. Pirates. Through the Lachance connection, O’Brien and Pecora learned of P.O.,which is short for Pierre-Oliver. The following fall, the Mont-Joli native was in Portland.

Last season, Michaud  was recruited by Merrimack (who took his teammate, Andrew Letellier),  Union, and Mercyhurst. He wanted to go Ivy, though, and held off on committing anywhere. He soon found himself being recruited by Harvard, Brown, Yale, Princeton, and, from Atlantic Hockey, Holy Cross. 

Michaud will be ready to go when Portland's postseason gets underway tomorrow with the preliminary round of the AJHL playoffs at Cyclones Arena in Hudson, NH. The quarterfinals are on Sunday.

The teams that emerge from there will move on to Harvard University’s Bright Arena for the semis on Sat. March 17 (11:30 am; 2:30 pm) and the championship game on Sun. March 18 (12:00 pm).

It’s hard to say if Portland will make it to Bright. While the team has more Div. I commitments than any other team in the league with players like Michaud, Letellier, and Maine recruit Mark Anthoine, it's also a young team whose best players are ‘88s, ‘89s, and ‘90s.  In other words, they lose games because of their youth and lack of strength.


Another player to watch in the AJHL tournament  is 6’2”, 210 lb. New Jersey Rockets RD John Carlson, a 1990 birthdate who has just committed to UMass for the fall of ’09. Big and physical, Carlson, a second year player in the league, also has offensive upside.. The Colonia, NJ native is leading his team in scoring with a 12-38-50 line in 44 games. He’s the third-leading scorer among the league’s defensemen (we should mention that the two players ahead of him are an ’86 and ’87). 


St. Sebastian’s Gets the Love

In one three-year span (2000-03), St. Sebastian’s went 81-9-3, won two straight prep titles and then, reaching their third consecutive final, lost an OT heartbreaker to Deerfield.

The stars of that team, as many of you will remember, were forwards Brian Boyle (BC) and Kenny Roche (BU), defenseman Sean Sullivan (BU), and goaltender Kevin Regan (UNH). They were all classmates who graduated from St. Seb’s in ’03. All except for Regan, who took a year in the USHL, are now seniors who will begin play in their final Hockey East Tournament tonight. That, and the fact that they all played with and against each other growing up, is the hook of an excellent article by Jim McCabe in today’s Boston Globe, the link to which we have supplied below.

The article doesn’t forget Mike Morris (Northeastern), an ’02 graduate of St. Sebastian’s; and Joe Rooney (BC), who left St. Seb’s a year early for the Walpole Stars in order to accelerate. Both Morris and Rooney (Boyle’s BC roommate) are also seniors playing in their final Hockey East Tournament tonight.     

The article identifies St. Sebastian’s as the only ISL school that doesn't offer boarding. We don’t want to nitpick (we make mistakes, too!) but that is not correct. That aside, this article nails it, nicely identifying all that is good about Boston-area youth and prep hockey. 

Boston Globe article on St. Sebastian's



Union Soph T.J. Fox Signs Free Agent Deal

6’1”, 197 lb. Union sophomore left wing T.J. Fox, the Dutchmen’s leading scorer, has signed a free agent contract with the San Jose Sharks.

Fox’s last collegiate game was Union’s 5-4 OT loss Saturday night at Quinnipiac in the first round of the ECAC playoffs.

Fox had a 13-24-37 scoring line in 36 games, but Union finished last in the ECAC regular season.

A 6/11/84 birthdate, Fox, who’s 22, signed a two-year cap deal. An Oswego, NY native, Fox, who played at the Salisbury School in ’02-03, but left midway through the season for the Green Bay Gamblers  (USHL), coached then by Mark Osiecki. He then played two years for the Chicago Steel (USHL), coached then by Wil Nichol.

His next stop will likely be the Worcester Sharks, San Jose’s AHL affiliate.    

The free agent exodus should really pick up next week, as more teams get eliminated this weekend.



Avon Wins Sixth New England Prep Title

Nick Bonino scored two goals and Patrick Enloe picked up his second shutout of the playoffs as Avon Old Farms beat Belmont Hill, 3-0, to take the 2007 New England Prep title before a packed house of 2,500 at the Icenter in Salem, NH today.

The win gave Avon their sixth prep title, and third in four years. All six have come under John Gardner. No other school has won more than two.

For full details, please go to the USHR Prep News. The short story here is that the better team won today, and Avon capped off a roll through the postseason that included a 3-0 win in the quarterfinals over Hotchkiss, and a 3-1 semifinal win over Nobles, with a virtually flawless performance. The Winged Beavers are good, they're deep, they're well-coached, and they can sing, as they showed when serenading their fans from the ice after being presented with the championship trophy.


In the Div. II final, Hoosac, which reached the title game two years ago, but got wiped out by Shea Guthrie and St. George's, won its first championship, defeating Vermont Academy, 7-3.

The difference in the game was Hoosac's big line of Mike Schiavi (1g,1a), Sy Nutkevitch (1g,2a), and Matthew David (2g) plus small defenseman Kyle Hardy (2a). No other Div. II team here was able to match up with those four Montrealers.

Again, for more details, check the USHR Prep News.



EJHL Playoffs Get Underway

The Eastern Junior Hockey League playoffs start Saturday at the Foxboro Arena, with quarterfinals being played in a best-of-two-with-mini-game format.

It’s a cross-division setup, and here are the matchups. Two times are listed. The first is for Saturday, and the second for Sunday.

#1 NH Monarchs vs. #4 Foxboro Stars (5:00 pm; 12:00 pm)
#1 Bay State Breakers vs. #4 Valley Jr. Warriors (5:30 pm; 12:30 pm)
#2 Junior Bruins vs. #3 NY Apple Core (7:30 pm; 3:00 pm)
#2 Bridgewater Bandits vs. #3 New England Huskies (8:00 pm: 3:30 pm).

The teams will be reseeded (based on their regular season record) for the semis, which will be held Sat.-Sun. March 10-11 at the New England Sports Center in Marlboro, Mass. That series will also be played under a best-of-two-with-mini-game format.

The finals will be a best-of-three setup this year, with games scheduled for Sat. March 17 (5:00 pm). Sun. March 18 (5:00 pm), and, if necessary, Mon. March 19 (7:00 pm).

That won’t be all. This year, a Tier III Junior A championship is being held, mainly because of the EJHL’s success at petitioning the past few years for Jr. A status. Since USA Hockey demands a national championship at every level, the EJHL must take part in the national championship, and will supply two teams (i.e. the regular season winner – the NH Monarchs and whoever wins the finals. If it’s the Monarchs that win it all, then the team they beat will be the other entrant for Nationals.) The AJHL will do the same. Though the AJHL will have a say in the matter, there’s a good chance that the same teams that met in the EJHL finals could meet at the National Tournament, which will be held at Walpole’s Iorio Arena on Mon-Tues. March 26-27.   

In 2008, the Tier III Junior A championship will likely expand, as some NAHL teams are considering breaking away from that league. In addition, some Central States Junior League teams will be applying for Tier III Junior A status.


To those thinking the Monarchs and the Junior Bruins are automatics for the finals, note that both the New England Junior Huskies and the Bay State Breakers are a couple of teams that could pose a threat.

The Junior Huskies have been excellent over the last month. Forward Phil Ginand, an ’88 who has committed to Mercyhurst for ’08, has been on a tear of late and is the third-leading scorer in the league. Defenseman Phil Cote, an ’86 who played at AIC last season, is on a roll, too, and leads the EJ defensemen in scoring. ’87 Ukranian Egor Egorov, who joined the Huskies for the last 19 games of the regular season, is averaging well over a point a game. ’86 goalie Joe Calvi, an Illinois native, has the third-best save percentage in the league.

The Bay State Breakers, an older team, finished first in their division and, if they wind up facing the Monarchs somewhere along the line, won’t lack for confidence. The Breakers crushed the Monarchs, 11-3, back in November, and the two teams have split since then, with the Monarchs winning 7-4 in November, and Bay State winning 4-3 in January.   


The Boston Harbor Wolves, who won just two of their 45 regular-season games this year, have been sold for a reported $125,000. John McLean, who was a volunteer assistant at Merrimack and played at BC, will be the coach/GM. His brother-in-law is the main investor in the purchase of the old Charlestown MDC rink, which will be renovated and serve as the home of the Harbor Wolves. One thing is for sure: itwould be hard for the team to do worse than they did this year. There’s just one way to go, and that’s up.


UMass-Lowell’s  Future in Hockey East Imperiled

The Lowell Sun is reporting that UMass Board of Trustees Chairman Stephen Tocco, who desires to solidify UMass-Amherst as the state’s flagship university, wishes to move the Riverhawks from Hockey East into another conference, like the Atlantic Hockey Conference. The ECAC was mentioned too, but that seems pretty far-fetched.

Tocco’s proposal did not go over well with some of the other trustees, to say nothing of the UMass-Lowell community.

Tocco, former executive director of the Port Authority, was reportedly a force in the firing of Joe Mallen at UMass, so he has clout. He appears to believe that UMass-Lowell’s presence is hurting UMass-Amherst’s recruiting.  Will this go anywhere? We don’t think so, but it’s certainly within the realm of possibility. This is also not the first time the issue has come up.

For what it's worth, UMass-Lowell was a charter member of Hockey East while UMass-Amherst didn’t join the league until 1993.



White to Wildcats

Cushing junior forward Matt White has committed to UNH for the fall of ’09.

White, who was Cushing’s second-leading scorer with a 15-45-60 line in 29 games, is fast and can make plays at top speed, so he’ll be tough to cover on the big sheet at UNH.

White, 5’9” and 172 lbs., is an 8/23/89 birthdate from Long Beach, California, who played for the LA Junior Kings Midget AAA team in ’05-06. Last April at Nationals, held in Rochester, NY, White put himself on the map, emerging as the tournament’s leading scorer and opening eyes in the process.

The Sioux City Musketeers attempted to recruit him into the USHL for this season, but White opted for prep school instead.


Prep Semis, Finals on Tap

Here's the official schedule for this weekend's NEPSIHA semifinals and finals at the Icenter in Salem, NH. Festivities begin at 11 am Saturday. Driving directions are below.

Div. I Semifinal Matchups
Icenter, Salem, NH, Sat. March 3, 2007
South Kent vs. Belmont Hill, 3:30 pm
Nobles vs. Avon Old Farms, 6:00 pm.

Div. I Championship game: 
Icenter, Salem, NH, Sun. March 4, 2007 at 3:00 pm 


Div. II Semifinal Matchups:
Icenter, Salem, NH, Sat. March 3, 2007

Brunswick vs. Hoosac, 11:00 am
Hebron vs. Vermont Academy,
1:15 pm.

The Div. II championship game: 
Icenter, Salem, NH, Sun. March 4, 2007 at 12:30 pm 

Driving Directions to the Icenter:
From Boston, Take Route 93 North. Right after crossing the Mass/New Hampshire border, take Exit 1 (Rockingham Park Boulevard). After exiting, you will see a sign for Mall Road, which will take you up on an overpass. When you come to a traffic light, take a right. This is Mall Road (you will see the race track on your right). Very shortly thereafter, it comes to a T, take a left there (Rt. 38 South), go straight through two sets of lights, and you'll see the Icenter about a half-mile down on the right. 


Nicastro Commits to Terriers

Los Angeles Junior Kings Midget AAA defenseman Max Nicastro has committed to Boston University for the fall of ’09.

Nicastro, who is from Thousand Oaks, California, is 6’2”, 175 lbs., and a 3/2/90 birthdate. In 2004-05, he played for the Ventura Mariners. Last season, he played for the California Wave.

This past summer, he injured his leg midway through the second game of the Select 16 Festival in Rochester, NY, but was selected anyway for the Under-17 team (there were two last year) that traveled to … Rochester.  

Nicastro has good size, holds the blue line well, has a good stick, can make a pass, and sees the ice well.

With the Junior Kings, he has a 17-19-36 line in 48 games. All but two of those goals have come on the power play.

Next season, he’s slated to play for the Chicago Steel (USHL).