Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Michigan Stars MDHL 08-09 Roster

Jersey # Last First School DOB Grade Position
2 Wahl Matt Cranbrook 5/15/1991 12th Defense
3 Sandmeyer Chris Portage Central H.S. 08/06/90 12th Defense
4 Hensley Steven Catholic Central 7/9/1992 11th Defense
5 Moore Evan U of D Jesuit 2/22/1992 11th Defense
6 DeBrincat Andrew Farmington Harrison 7/21/1993 10th Defense
7 Yanis Michael U of D Jesuit 6/15/1991 12th Defense/Forward
8 Brown Patrick Cranbrook 5/29/1992 11th Forward
9 Darnell Brent Catholic Central 3/23/1992 11th Forward
10 Brown Drew Chelsea 4/28/1992 11th Forward
11 Depp Brian Hartland 4/23/1991 12th Forward
12 Gruse Martin Trenton High School 9/15/1992 11th Forward
14 Kovacs Justin GP North 10/13/1991 12th Forward
15 Olson Mac U of D Jesuit 8/13/1991 12th Forward
16 Scarfone Benjamin Grosse Pointe North 3/2/1991 12th Forward
17 Spurlin Jonah Flint Powers 10/1/1990 12th Forward
18 Thomas Tony Catholic Central 11/16/1990 12th Forward
19 Wojtala Camden Trenton 8/29/1991 12th Forward
20 Hughes Christopher SMCC 7/27/1991 11th Forward
1 Kleinhans John DeLaSalle Collegiate 2/8/1991 12th Goalie
29 Rohrkemper Eric Grosse Pointe North 4/2/1991 12th Goalie

Malmo Redhawks 08-09 Roster

P # Name Birth Year
3 G 31 Alexander Bengtsson 90
4 G 35 Fabian Sivnert 92
6 D 44 Niklas Arell 90
7 D 38 Ziga Grahut 90
8 D 61 Anton Blomqvist 90
9 D 9 Rasmus Damgaard 91
10 D 10 Oliver Widding-Persson 91
11 D 4 Henrik Sandmark 91
12 D 7 Scott Nordh 92
13 D 5 Viktor Mångs 92
15 F 51 Adam Strandh 90
16 F 23 Linus Molin 90
17 F 11 Anders Poulsen 91
18 F 59 Robin Dahse 92
19 F 27 Andreas Ahlberg 91
20 F 86 Victor Öhman 92
21 F 40 Viktor Holmkvist 92
22 F 17 Sebastian Dyk 92
23 F 39 Roger Olsson 92
24 F 26 Axel Wemmenborn 92
25 F 15 Pontus Westerholm 92
26 F 33 Patrik Westerholm 92

Thursday, October 09, 2008

CCHA Preview

Notre Dame finds themselves in the same position Michigan State was last year. They come into the season following a fairly average year, ended with a fantastic run in the NCAA tournament. The Irish were one goal--strangely enough, one goal for, not against-- from not making the NCAA tournament last year, before finishing as runner-up in the national tournament. Which team is the real Notre Dame? I think the NCAA tournament-version of the Irish. The Irish lot some of their heart and soul due to graduation, with the loss of Mark VanGilder, but have yet to feel the sting of early pro departures of some of Jeff Jackson’s more talented recruits. This is the most talented team in the CCHA, and they should be able to take home a conference crown.

will have to recover from losing their entire top line of Kevin Porter, Chad Kolarik, and Max Pacioretty. It’s unlikely that any combination of players will replace their amazing goal totals of last year, but Michigan’s large freshmen class of last season is back—minus Pacioretty—and should be even better than last season. On the backend, Mark Mitera is back for his senior season and is a Player of the Year candidate. Billy Sauer’s struggles in the NCAA tournament have been well-documented, but his regular season play last year was very good. Michigan may lack the scoring to seriously compete for a national title, but their record NCAA tournament appearance streak should remain in tact.

This could be a defining year for the Miami program. With the departures of Nathan Davis, Ryan Jones, Alec Martinez and Jeff Zatkoff, Miami will need to prove that they can compete annually with the CCHA’s best, rather than the past few years being the result of a one good group of players. This group should be able to score goals, but their goaltending will have to prove itself for Miami to be a serious contender. The Redhawks have a good chance of sneaking into the NCAA tournament, but unless one of their goalies plays way better than expected, they likely won’t have much success in the tournament again.

Much like Michigan last season, Michigan State’s season will depend on how quickly their freshmen can adapt to college hockey, after a string of departures to the NHL this past summer. The Spartans bring in a lot of forwards that were among the very best in their respective junior leagues last season, but those leagues are less traditional recruiting grounds for top NCAA players. Goalie Jeff Lerg may need to carry this team early in the season while those players adjust for the Spartans to be successful. The Spartans could be on the NCAA tournament bubble, but a slump, either early in the season, or in the second half when the youngsters start to hit a wall, could keep them out of the tournament.

Even diehard college hockey fans would be hard-pressed to name more than a few players on Ferris State’s roster, but the Bulldogs have quietly been one of the better mid-tier CCHA teams, and would have been the near the NCAA tournament bubble last year, if not for a rough stretch in the middle of January. The Bulldogs finished 5th in most every statistical category. Goalie Mitch O’Keefe’s eligibility ran out at the end of last season, so Pat Nagle will need to improve his numbers in goal a little bit, but overall, this looks to be a very tough, gritty team.

Northern Michigan seems to be the trendy pick for surprise team in the CCHA this year, even ending up in the first national poll. But regardless of expectation, the Wildcats always seems finish in the middle of the pack in the CCHA, make a run to Joe Louis for the CCHA tournament, but end up a game or two short of making the NCAA tournament. Mark Olver should keep a family tradition alive by being the Wildcats leading scorer this year. He led the team in scoring as a freshman last year, while older brother Darin led the Wildcats in scoring in his first three seasons, before finishing second in team scoring as a senior. The key for the Wildcats will be the play of Brian Stewart in goal. Stewart’s numbers improved last season, but goaltending still isn’t a strength for this team.

Despite not having a lot of success recently, Bowling Green has managed some pretty decent recruiting classes, which should make them a difficult team to play against. Leading the way is sophomore Jacob Cepis, a leading scorer in the USHL who looks destined for big things. The Falcons have struggled in goal ever since the departure of Jordan Sigalet four years ago, but Nick Eno showed promise last season, and if he can hold Bowling Green in some games, they have a chance to be very successful.

This will be a make-or-break year for Ohio State head coach John Markell. He’ll have to hope for improved chemistry in the locker room, and a huge impact from his freshman and sophomore classes to save his job. Those newcomers will be a welcome addition to a powerplay that was the worst in CCHA play last season. There is a lot of talent on this team, but unfortunately this team is probably a year or two away from really competing.

Nebraska-Omaha has enjoyed enormous amounts of production from their top line recent years thanks to great forwards like Bryan Marshall, Mick Lawrence, Scott Parse, and Bill Thomas. This year’s UNO team will need to rely on a much more balanced offensive approach to be successful. The Mavericks have gone with a goalie-by-committee approach over the past three seasons, with no one ever stepping in and taking the reigns. Jeremie Dupont has the talent to be that goalie they’ve needed, and as a junior, will have to step up.

Dallas Ferguson will start his first season as the third head coach of Alaska in just three years. His team is a little thin on talent, but he’ll have a great first line with the Knelsen brothers and Dustin Sather, and will hope for a big freshmen year from Carlo Finucci. The Nanooks have the advantage of experience in goal with senior Chad Johnson, who could help keep his team in a few more games.

Lake Superior may not be a team with a lot of household names, but they have a very experienced group up front with players like Nathan Perkovich, Zac MacVoy, Troy Schwab, and Josh Sim. It’s not elite level talent, but it also isn’t as bad as things were during the Anzalone 2.0 disaster. Brian Mahoney-Wilson showed promise in goal last year as a freshman, and Lake Superior may need him to help carry the team, the same way LSSU had moderate success with Jeff Jakaitis in goal.

Last year was another abysmal year for Western Michigan and things don’t look to be getting much better. The Broncos had the worst offense in the league last year, averaging less than two goals per game. They were also near the bottom of the league in goals against. The offense may improve, with good scorers like Patrick Galivan and Max Campbell returning, but none of their newcomers look like they will make an immediate impact in the same way Mark Letestu did two years ago, and it’s hard to see much improvement in this year’s WMU team.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Wisconsin Preview

Thanks to a change by the NCAA Rules Committee, the 07-08 Wisconsin Badgers will go down in history as the only team to make the NCAA tournament with a losing record. The Badgers won an NCAA tournament game on their home ice, before losing a third period lead to North Dakota in the regional final. This year's Wisconsin team returns most of the players from last year, including star defenseman Jamie McBain and Ryan McDonagh, but minus superstar forward Kyle Turris.

Who is Gone?: The Badgers had a very young team last year, so they didn't lose too much, but did lose one of their top forwards in Kyle Turris. They lost two top defenseman in Kyle Klubertanz and Davis Drewiske. Depth players Josh Engel and Matt Ford also graduated.

Who is New?
: The Badgers bring in a strong freshman class, who beat out a cast of thousands of other players committed to the Badgers for the right to play college hockey this year. Forwards Matt Thurber, Jordy Murray and Derek Stepan should make an immediate impact. First round NHL draft pick Jake Gardiner is talented, but could need some time to adjust to college hockey. Eric Springer and Ryan Little should add depth on defense.


Projected Forward Lines

Mike Davies-Ben Street-Derek Stepan
Josh Turnbull-Blake Geoffrion-Pat Johnson
Matt Thurber-Sean Dolan-John Mitchell
Jorday Murray-Ben Grotting-Tom Gorowsky

Kyle Turris was the Badgers' leading scorer last year as a freshmen, but unfortunately for Badger fans, one year is all he would play in Madison. The Badgers don't have a flashy offense, but do return a few proven scorers in Ben Street and Mike Davies. Blake Geoffion had a 24-point increase between his freshman and sophomore seasons, and could be an offensive catalyst for the Badgers this year. Wisconsin also has the advantage of being able to count on some offense from their talented blueline.

Wisconsin finished 6th in league scoring last year, and without any bonafide superstars, they'll likely finish in the middle of the league again this year in scoring. If anything, I'd expect an inconsistent offense that looks very good some nights, but is shutdown on other nights.


Projected Defensive Pairings

Jamie McBain-Ryan McDonagh
Brendan Smith-Cody Goloubef
Jake Gardiner-Craig Johnson

This should be one of the more talented groups in the country. Last year, the Badgers had three 18-year-old freshmen defenseman playing nearly every night, and there were some hiccups as they learned the ropes. This year, those three are a year older and should be much better. Jamie McBain and Ryan McDonagh are both All-American candidates, and are likely playing their last year of college hockey.

While this is a talented unit, most of their defensemen are known for their offensive prowess. They could chip in some offense, but I'm not convinced that they will absolutely shut teams down the way their national title winning team did 3 years ago.


Shane Connelly
Scott Gudmanson
Jeff Henderson

After struggling mightily at the start of his career, Shane Connelly proved that was a capable starting goalie in his first full year as a starter, but he'll likely never be a dominating star in the way his predecessor Brian Elliott was. Scott Gudmanson played sparingly last season, and could see more action this year to prepare him for Connelly's graduation at the end of this year.


The Badgers finished in the middle of the pack in just about every statistical category last year in conference play(except for penalty kill, where they weren't very good). That means the Badgers should be in the hunt in the WCHA this year, but will probably lack the game-changing offense or goaltending to really compete amongst the best in the league. Their defense will be very good, but probably not enough to make a huge difference offensively or defensively. A little puck luck--and avoiding Randy Schmidt as an official--could make a big difference, but the lack of great goaltending will probably move them down towards the bottom of the middle of the pack.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Other Shattuck Rosters

Midget AAA
Jasper Aasa
Paul Barral
Brandon Beneduce
Billy Bruggeman
Ethan Caple
Peter Clements
Paul Enders
Geoff Ferguson
Karlis Kalvitis
Nick Kolz
Truman Landowski
Josh Little
Cody Marooney
Colin McCarthy
Ben Murphy
Dom Racobaldo
Alex Seyb
Guan Wang
Charles Wilson
Marcus Zelzer

Boys U16
Cory Bastian
Nick Bruneteau
Dennis Dalidovich
Daniel Elser
Ken Gillespie
Anthony Greco
Ben Grenier
Reid Jackson
Keegan Lowe
James Mullin
Nick Oswald
Canon Pieper
Ben Roush
Bryan Sinz
Tanner Sorenson
A.T. Terenzio
Peter Traber
Nicholas Weberg

Midget AA
Tyler Bruneteau
Mik Bushinski
Clayton Curwin
Jacob Davidson
Brody Decker
John Domina
John Draeger
Hans Drawbert
Victor Estoque
E.J. Faust
Aaron Forgaard
Castrenze Fricano
Orri Haman
Brian Harrison
Kyle Lee
Caleb Neal
Archie Ogani
Paul Parisot
Michael Rodriguez
Joseph Roelle
Trevor Stewart
Kevin Szopa
Tadas Tsibulskis
Nick Weiler
Zach Wolff
Spencer Wright

Bantam Tier 1
Zack Aman
Peter Barrel
Teddy Blueger
Oscar Dansk
Teddy Doherty
Hunter Fejes
Kyle Hayton
Noah Henry
Jordan Jancze
Miles Koules
Sebastien Lemm
Zack MacQueen
Ian McCoshen
Jake Montgomery
Trey Olson
Bo Pieper
Truman Reed
Ryan Schwalbe
Zach Stepan
Quinton Vitek

Bantam A
Liam Biard
Colin Biebel
Alex Birk
Spencer Carter
Michael Chuinard
Jake Curwin
Andrew Farney
Matt McCardel
Nick Mosher
Taylor Parkinson
Cal Perry
Justin Pirard
Kirk Reeve
Caleb Sevier
Andrew Sprang
Jack Strommen
Ben Tegtmeyer
Danny Tirone
J.T. Walters
Noah Westphal

Girls Prep
Dru Burns
Jessica Cohen
Brianna Decker
Kellie Dineen
Alyssa Gagliardi
Nicole Germaine
Kristine Horn
Lauren Joarnt
Kinzey Johnson
Amanda Kessel
Madison Kolls
Courtney Langston
Heidi Martin
Madison Marzario
Logan Murray
Madi Murray
Elena Orlando
Kathleen Rogan
Elena Ruegsegger

Girls U16
Rachel Bellio
Lexi Bender
Camille Biard
Jessica Brown
Courtney Burke
Molly Byrne
Megan Cox
Alexis Crossley
Kim Drake
Lauren Eberwein
Brook Garzone
Makeena Keil
Erin Krichiver
Kelly Murray
Aimee Rupp
Breanna Simon
Kayla Sullivan
Dana Trivigno
Jorie Walters
Ellie Williams

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Select 17 Camp Report

Team Black

Drew Shore(DU recruit)-Finished with a very respectable 7 points and was really a catalyst for this team. One of the most talented forwards at the camp.

Alex Wideman(Miami recruit)-Played with Shore and was a great playmaker all week. A little small, but excellent offensively.

Tyler Pitlick(Minnesota State recruit)-Has all the physical tools; a great skater, good hands, good size. He just needs to put it all together to become a great player.

Collin Bowman(WHL)-Had a great year with Kelowna last year, and looked very good here. He’s added a lot of strength recently and should be an excellent prospect to watch next year.

Eric Johnson-Played really well on Wednesday. Not flashy but a very solid defender.

Zach Marginsky-He’ll get a lot of looks because he’s a very legitimate 6’6” tall. He can move around fairly well for his size.

Gold Team

Tyler Brickler-Had a very brief stint with the Lincoln Stars last year. He should have a big year next year in the USHL. Very talented forward.

Stephen Obarzanek-Had a great week statistically. He’s got good size and can throw his weight around, and showed some nice scoring touch this week.

William Wrenn(DU recruit)- Excellent defender. Good shot. Plays with a bit of temper. I thought he played very well.

Nick Oliver(St. Cloud recruit)- Skating still needs a lot of work, but he’s always working hard.
Sean Casey-Big defenseman from Florida that has some potential.

Lee Winston-Not the most skilled player, but always willing to get his nose dirty.

Green Team

Zach Budish(Minnesota recruit)- Physically dominated everyone at the camp.

Tyler Voight-Excellent along the boards.

Eamonn McDermott- Very small for a defenseman, but extremely quick and smooth with the puck.

Mike Montrose-Showed the ability to jump into the play occasionally. Good talent, but got caught out of position a few times.

Grey Team

Joey Zarbo(Clarkson recruit)-Very speedy, good offensive talent.

Matthew White-I was a little surprised he didn’t score more points. A big power forward with a lot of skill.

Kenny Ryan(BC recruit)-Played pretty well on Wednesday. Injured and didn’t play on Saturday.

Joe Rogalski(OHL)-Big stay-at-home defenseman.

Josh Birkholz(Minnesota recruit)-A ton of talent. Attitude has been the biggest question with him.


Brad Smith(OSU recruit)- Played very well. His lack of size may keep him from being an NHL prospect, but he should be an excellent college player.

David Valek-Was playing with a soft cast on his wrist, but still one of the best power forwards at the camp. It’s surprising that he hasn’t chosen a college yet.

Sam Alfieri-Played with Smith and Valek on Wednesday and the line was nearly unstoppable.

Dan Furlong-Good skater that moves the puck well.

Sam Calabrese(Notre Dame recruit)-Not as dominant as he was at the Select 15s, but still very good. He’s grown a little bit, so he’s not as quick, but he’s still very agile. Probably not a superstar, but a very good player.

John Ramage-Big defenseman that skates really well. Of the defenseman that played Jr. A last year, Ramage was probably the best.

Joey Rehkamp-Quick and skilled, but still very small.

Navy Team

Brad Robbins-A little guy, but he’s not afraid to go to the front of the net to score goals. Played very well both days.

Paul Phillips(DU recruit)-Played solid both days, but didn’t really stand out to me.

Nick Mattson(North Dakota recruit)-Not very flashy, but played well all week. Moved the puck well and did a nice job on defense.

Caleb Herbert-Very speedy and scored a couple of goals on the week.

Brendan Rempel-Very big defenseman. If he improves his skating a little bit, he could be an excellent player.

Patrick Wey-Didn’t play his best on Wednesday, but looked good on Saturday.

Orange Team

Ryan Walters(Minnesota recruit)- Always making things happen in the offensive zone.

Kevin Cole(Cornell recruit)-One of the best players on Wednesday. Very fast.

Blake Coleman-Scored a lot of points over the course of the week.

Nick Lovejoy(Clarkson recruit)-Big, young defenseman with a lot of ability

Tyler Amburgey-Great size and strength. Still a little raw defensively but has a lot of potential.

David Johnstone(Michigan State recruit)-Kind of a quiet week, but chipped in a couple of points. Comfortable in the offensive zone with a decent snap shot.

Purple Team

Garrett Orhn-Good defenseman, but needs to add a lot of strength to play at the college level.

Brad Walch-Not a dominating performance, and got called for a few bad penalties, but plays pretty good defense. A good combination of size and skating.

Cody Murphy-Never really able to put things together and score like he is capable of, but is still incredibly talented. A good skater with excellent finishing ability.

Jay Camper-Played very well. Good poise with the puck.

AJ Treais(Michigan recruit)-Lack of size is starting to catch up to him a little bit, but still an amazing stickhandler.

Kit Sitterley- Very impressive. He’s underrated because he comes from a non-traditional hockey area, but is a very solid player.

Red Team

Brian Dumoulin- Big defenseman that can really skate.

Nate Schmidt(Minnesota recruit)-Not as impressive as he was at the Select 15s since he doesn’t physically dominate over everyone anymore, but he’s still a very good player, and looks more comfortable playing defense now.

Richie Crowley-Surprised he hasn’t made a college commitment yet. Very poised and responsible on the blueline all week.

Chris Brown(Michigan recruit)-Played like a bull in a china shop, which didn’t work well with the tight officiating, but a very impressive prospect. He skates extremely well for his size and isn’t afraid to throw his weight around. One of the more impressive forwards at the cap.

Nick Widing-Didn’t stand out much for Hill-Murray last year, but was more of an offensive threat here.

Anthony Hamburg-Consistently the most dangerous offensive threat for his team. Very skilled.

Royal Team

Mark Alt(Minnesota recruit)-Huge defenseman that is incredibly athletic. Should be a very high draft pick in 2010.

Mac Bennett(Michigan recruit)-Always calm, cool and collected. Had the most poise with the puck of any defenseman at the camp.

Beau Bennett-Leading scorer at the camp thanks to a big game on Saturday. Not flashy, but very effective.

Michael Pereira-Always in the middle of things offensively.

Teal Team

Beau Schmitz(OHL)-Great skater. Played the game a higher level than everyone else. Didn’t play on Saturday and his team really struggled without him.

Torey Krug-A small defenseman, but works hard and plays smart defense.

Ryan Reilly-One of the smaller forwards at the camp, but very speedy and a good playmaker.

Matt Tabrum-A solid player that understands the game very well.

Kevin Lynch(Michigan recruit)-Not incredibly flashy skillwise, but he always seemed to be in the middle of the play in the offensive and defensive zones, and always seemed to be making things happen.

White Team

Nick Leddy(Minnesota recruit)-One of the best skating defenseman at the camp. Really starting to develop into an excellent player.

Ben Hughes-Smart, poised defenseman with decent size and excellent skating. Should do well at the Jr. A level next season.

Kyle Beattie-Needs to add a little weight, but once he does, he should be an excellent player. Great skills and hockey sense.

Shane Berschbach- Doesn’t get a lot of hype because he’s so small, but always finds a way to score points.

Steven Whitney(BC recruit)-Not a dominating performance like the past two Select camps, but still one of the most skilled players on the ice.

Nate Heng(Nebraska-Omaha recruit)-Great stickhandler and playmaker. Can make something happen every time he touches the puck.

It’s difficult to judge the goalies over such a short time, but a couple that stood out to me were Max Fenkell, Cab Morris, Matthew Skoff, Branden Komm, and Eric Ferber

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Sioux Falls Tryout Camp

Sioux Falls camp this year didn't have as much star power as last year's camp with Jake Hansen and Jack Connolly giving impressive performances, but it was another very fast-paced camp. It was pretty well-attended too. It looked like some fans had made the trip from Sioux Falls which is pretty impressive.

The Navy team was the most impressive at the camp, led by Harvard recruit Luke Grenier. Grenier was the most impressive player of the day. He's filled out over the past 12 months, and should be due for a huge year for the Stampede. Returning player Matt Farris also had a nice game. St. Cloud recruit David Eddy looked talented, but was kind of all over the place. A year in the USHL refining his game a little bit should serve him very well. Also, former Blaine HS forward Mike Schaber played an excellent second half of his game and was rewarded with a goal. He was recruited by some WCHA teams over the high school season. Former Texas Tornado forward Adam Mitchell also looked very good, and has very good size.

On defense, Randy Cure recently committed to Mercyhurst. He's a big guy that skates well. He's a little unpolished, but has a lot of potential. Another intriguing defenseman was '91 birthdate Drew Scurfield. He played a couple games in the MJHL last year. In another couple years, he could be very good.

Defenseman Chad Ruhwedel looked pretty good for the Green team, as did returning forward Dane Walters.

On the Gold team, Anthony Raiola had a pretty impressive camp and he should have a solid year for Sioux Falls. Cretin-Derham Hall's Ryan Bohrer also had a good game. The Gold team also had a couple nice power forwards in Ryan Kesti and Duncan McKellar.

The most impressive player for the Red team was former Texas Tornado forward Sam Goodwin. Goodwin was great, but he might have trouble making the team because he's an '88 birthdate. The Stampede have '88s Kris Reinthaler, Max Grover, Terry Broadhurst, and Joe Knoepke all returning, so one of them would have to go for Goodwin to make the team. If Goodwin didn't make it in Sioux Falls, I'm sure somebody would pick him up.

'91s Andy Simpson and Travis Belohrad both looked pretty good for the Red team.

Among the goalies, Eric Hartzell will likely be returning unless he commits to a college. Sioux Falls also had two of the better '91 goalies out there in camp with C.J. Motte and Clay Witt. Both are talented, but maybe a little raw right now, though they'd potentially make nice back-ups to Hartzell. Also at the camp was a goalie named Matt Ray, a '92 from Andover, Minnesota. I wasn't familiar with him, but he was outstanding.

Tri-City Storm Camp

As you might expect, Tri-City's returning players were, for the most part, the top players at the camp.

For the Gold team, Mike Cichy played pretty well. He should have an exceptional year in the USHL next year before heading to North Dakota. Another returning forward, Josh Berge, also played pretty well. Kyle Politz of Apple Valley, played in the NAHL last year, and he looks like he's ready to make the jump to the USHL this year. Returning defenseman Danny Heath has made a huge jump in terms of strength over the past 12 months and looks like a much more solid defenseman.

For the second straight year, I though Nick Oliver looked great at this tryout camp. He drew some criticism for his play during the high school season, but I still believe he's better suited for a league like the USHL or in college hockey which is more physical. Former Hill-Murray forward Andy Singerhouse was another player that didn't blow me away during the high school season, but played extremely well at the camp. I think he's got a decent shot of making the team.

Chicago Young Americans defenseman Charlie Dodero was the only '92 birthdate(that I recognized, the roster didn't have birthyears). He struggled a little bit with the faster pace, but he should be pretty good in a few years.

Jordan Van Gilder was playing for the Navy team, which implies that he won't be going to Alaska next year. Twins Matt and Joe Zarbo looked very good for the Navy team, though passing and team play was understandably sloppy with everyone at the camp, so they definitely had an advantage playing together.

Off the Red team, New York defenseman Sean Escobedo tried out for Sioux Falls' team last year and I thought he was very close to making the team. He looked good at this tryout camp too. The Red team also had three recently graduated defenseman from the Minnesota high school ranks in Grant Fahnhorst, Rob Vannelli, and Zach Tolkinen. Vannelli is probably good enough to play right now, while the other two are bigger defenseman that could be very good USHL defenseman with a little more development.

Anthony DeCenzo played a few games for Tri-City last year and with a full season for the Storm this year, he should be one of their best scoring threats. Troy Power is another returning forward that had a surprising(at least to me) lack of points last year, but with a year under his belt, should score more next year.

St. Cloud Tech's Jared Maetche played at forward at the camp after experimenting on defense during the high school. He played well at forward and continues to remind me of St. Cloud Tech alum John Swanson.

New Jersey forward Colin Markison was one of the best forwards at the camp. I thought he had made a commitment to somewhere, but then couldn't find anything. In any case, he was excellent.

The Grey team had Minnesota recruit Brandon Martell. Martell lost most of last year due to injury, and some Minnesota fans have raised their eyebrows about his potential future with Minnesota. Martell played pretty well at the tryout camp, but wasn't head and shoulders above the competition. He'll likely be what Minnesota expected when they recruited him, which is a solid defenseman that can add some depth and fill in if the team gets beset by injuries.

The Grey team also had some nice performances from players I wasn't familiar with before the camp. Forwards Nick Curry, Doug Clifford, and JT Osborn all played pretty well.

Roseau's Tyler Landman also had an excellent camp. He scored the goal of the day when he dove past a defender to deflect a centering pass into the net, and added a nice assist through hard work.

The goalies at the camp were: Ryan Benitez, Tyler Bruggeman, Owen Collette, Nick Holmes, Kyle Jendra, Nick Maricic, and Sean McClure. Nick Hopper was supposed to be coming back this year, but he wasn't at the camp. The Storm probably needed an overhaul at the goalie position anyway. Bruggeman and Collette both played pretty well. Bruggeman stopped 7 straight breakaways between the game and the post-game shootout. Both goalies will likely go back to high school and compete for the honor of top senior goalie in the state next year.

Jendra is still a tremendously quick goalie, and has a shot at making the team. It's really a shame that he wasted his college eligibility by signing with the Plymouth Whalers and then only playing three games for them. Nick Holmes and Yale recruit Nick Maricic are two other '90 born goalies that played well and have an excellent shot at making the team.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The 2011 Recruiting Board

I've tried to be as thorough as possible in creating this list, but given the difficult nature of maintaining a list like this, there are always going to be players that should be on this list that are missing. If you think I have missed a player that should be listed, or have any other comments on the list, please email me at westerncollegehockey@gmail.com

Committed Forwards

Seth Ambroz-Omaha(USHL)-Committed to Minnesota-Big power forward with good scoring ability.

Nick Bjugstad-Blaine(MN HS)-Committed to Minnesota-Big forward with excellent shot

Austin Czarnik-NTDP U17-Committed to Michigan State-One of the top scorers at 2008 Select 16 Festival.

Uncommitted Forwards

Shane McColgan-LA Kings AAA-Likely signing with Kelowna of WHL.

Colin Jacobs-Texas Attack

Brandon Saad-Mahoning Valley(NAHL)-Visited Michigan, among other schools

Brett Benson-Weyburn

Cason Hohmann-Dallas Ice Jets-

Colton Hargrove-Dallas Penguins-Big, power forward. Visited UMass and Denver.

Vince Trochek-Little Caesar’s

Travis Boyd-Hopkins HS(MN HS)-

Dan Carlson-Maple Grove Bantam-

Max Birkinbine-White Bear Lake(MN) Bantam-

Danny Elser-Shattuck-

Craig Duinick-St. Cloud(MN) Bantam

Committed Defenseman

Robbie Russo-Chicago Mission-Committed to Notre Dame-

Uncommitted Defenseman

Justin Sefton-Notre Dame Prep

Eric Preston-Little Caesar's U16-Good skater. Right-handed shot.

Kevin Liss-Pittsburgh Hornets-Talented puck-moving defenseman

Ben Marshall-Mahtomedi(MN HS)-Invited to 2008 NTDP tryout camp. Capable of playing forward or defense.

Max Everson-Edina HS(MN HS)-

Andrew Ryan-Victory Honda-Very big for his age. Lots of potential

Uncommitted Goalies