Our Top 16 From Harvard Camp
Earlier this week, from a sizzling Sunday to a temperate Tuesday, the Harvard University coaches hosted a three-day tournament dubbed the College Hockey Experience -- not the zippiest of names -- at the Bright-Landry Hockey Center.
With ten teams, each consisting of nine forwards, six defensemen, and two goalies, there were 170 players to look over. The birth years ranged from 2000-2005, with no more than ten '00s and the same number of '05s. The biggest chunk of players came from the '03 birth year, followed by the '02s, then the '01s, and the '04s. Most of the older players were spread across one group of four teams, while the other group of six teams was a little younger. We're just trying to lay out the landscape for you here.
We watched each team once in games that were played with 25-minute run time halves, all 5x5 play. Penalties were treated as icing: faceoff back in your end.
Here, in no particular order, are the 16 players that stood out for us. The five players with asterisks preceding their names are our all-star picks. The two goalies listed could also be on the team -- it's impossible to pick one over the other.
LC Alex Robert (#9 Kelly Green) '00, Deerfield -- Will be the top returning scorer at Deerfield this season. Consistently noticeable.
* RD Matt Fusco (#7 White) '03, Dexter -- Played well in all three zones. Keeps feet moving, is mobile, and consistently makes plays. Also played up front, strengthening his team's top line. The youngest player among the tournament's four oldest teams, Fusco was able to pretty much make plays at will.
RW Kevin Urquhart (#10 White) '01, Proctor -- Played last year for the Valley Jr. Warriors U18s. 6'2", good stride, made plays -- and finished his chances.
* RC Andy Moore (#11 White) '02, Greely (Maine) HS -- Good size, smart, a playmaker. Worked well with Urquhart. Those two -- and Fusco -- pretty much dominated the game I watched them in.
* LC Alexander Assadourian (#15 Forest Green) '05, York Simcoe (Ontario) -- The top 2005 birthdate here. Did something every shift. Makes plays, competes. A lot of upside.
LD Joseph Calvarino (#5 Orange) '03, Westchester Express -- Good stick abets his offensive skills. Strong, compact d-man. Loves to skate with it. Sometimes tries to do too much, but that's OK with us -- in this setting, anyway.
LW/C Liam Cochrane (#10 Orange) '04, St. Albert (Alberta) Sabres -- Good skater, good head for the game, and a great one-timer for his age.
G Justin Wu (#43 Orange) '03, Mississauga (Ontario) Rebels -- It's a little hard to rank goalies just from watching them in one 25-minute stop-time half. But Wu is technically sound, quick laterally, and has a good glove. Made some key saves.
RC Drew Haxton (#9 Gold) '03, Bishop Hendricken (RI) HS -- Will be at Nobles this fall. Quick, average-sized forward relies on excellent stick skills. Scored a bunch of goals here. Consistently noticeable, but needs to become a little more dynamic.
RD John Logan (#5 Maroon) '03, BC High -- Good wheels, handles puck well, and can carry it. Good at both ends.
RW Anton Safonov (#11 Maroon) '03, NJ Devils U16 -- Good stick, and tall, too. Uses body to effectively protect puck.
LC Adam Teryek (#13 Maroon) '04, Delbarton (NJ) School -- Crafty player, good stick skills, won draws, and made plays.
* RW/C Arvega Hovsepyan (#15 Maroon) '03, Shattuck-St. Mary's -- Big, strong winger with a long stride and a great wrister. Stood out consistently.
G Justin Katz (#49 Maroon) '04, Lac St.-Louis -- Again, we didn't get a long look at goalies, but Katz showed himself to be technically sound, and made some excellent saves. Had a strong team in front of him.
* LD Evan Orloff (#4 Grey) '03, NJ Rockets U16 -- Tall, long stride, and great reach. More likely to move the puck up to his forwards than to take off with it. Has the earmarks of a solid d-man.
RW Matthew Brille (#12 Royal Blue) '03, Landon School/NJ Rockets -- Skating needs some smoothing out, but he's patient, physical, protects puck well, and has a good sense of the game.
Kings of East Coast Showcase
It has one of the better names of any summer tournament...The Kings of East Coast Showcase. And tomorrow, Tuesday July 30th, it gets underway at Lowell's Tsongas Arena.
The tournament, run by Vancouver scout Vinnie Montalbano, is a small -- eight teams -- U19 showcase that puts the spotlight on uncommitted players.
It will run for three days, ending on Thursday August 1st.
Below is the schedule and rosters. There will be roster books on hand for coaches and scouts, and admission is free.
Kings of East Coast Showcase Schedule & Rosters
Top '05s at BU Camp
Earlier this week (Mon.-Wed. July 15-17), some of the top '05s -- mostly from the Northeast -- were in action at Boston University's camp. In addition to skills work, the players were split up into four teams, each playing a game a day at Walter Brown Arena.
In no particular order, here are the players who stood out for us.
Ryan Fine, Mid-Fairfield -- A ridiculously good skater who makes high-skill plays at full speed. Can beat even the best of d-men 1-on-1. He should be an NTDP player when the time comes. Committed to BU.
Will Smith, Boston Jr. Eagles -- Dominates with size. Excellent skill and shot. Scored a bunch of highlight reel goals. He should also be an NTDP player in a couple of years. Committed to Northeastern.
Sal Guzzo, Mid-Fairfield -- Great combination of size, skill, and tenacity. Never gives up on a play. Yet another who could be an NTDP player when his time comes.
Nick Lardis, Oakville (Ontario) Blades -- Small elusive playmaker. His vision and skating are off the charts. Will be a really good college player.
Calum Ritchie, Oakville (Ontario) Blades -- Good size, excellent skater. Scored a bunch of goals and plays at both ends of the ice.
Owen Leahy, Providence Capitals -- Small, fast, tenacious. Good playmaker with a good shot.
Logan Renkowski, Mid-Fairfield -- Smooth and skilled. He has really good offensive instincts, and makes his linemates better.
Ryan Leonard, Springfield Rifles -- A young power forward, Leonard has excellent stick skills and a bomb of a shot.
Tanner Adams, LI Royals -- Small playmaking centerman. Makes his linemates better. Also knows how to play in his own end. Committed to Providence.
Aram Minnetian, Mid-Fairfield -- Big d-man who is also one of the best skaters in the age group. An excellent athlete, he will only get better. He should be an NTDP player when the time comes.
Jonathan Lanza, Boston Jr. Eagles -- Good solid d-man. Lanza moves the puck well, and has a physical element in how he defends.
Drew Fortescue, Mid-Fairfield -- The most refined of the group, Fortescue has an extremely mature game for his age. Skates well, defends well, and has really good vision.
Mike Hagens (usually a forward), LI Royals -- Surprise of the camp. He went back to defense and, even as undersized as he is, controlled the game whenever he was on the ice.
Matt Mania, Belle Tire -- A converted forward, Mania moves the puck very well, defends equally well, and has excellent offensive instincts.
Alex Bosland, NJ Colonials -- Big, tough right-shot D who can really shoot it from the point. Strong passer and defender.
Cooper Rautenstrauch, Buffalo Jr. Sabres -- Outstanding. He has good size, a great glove, and stood on his head in two of his three games.
Carter Capton, Lethbridge (Alberta) Winterhawks -- He is huge, yet still plays athletically. Capton controls rebounds well, and defends post-to-post as well as most goalies several years older than he.