Apr 19

2014 OHL Priority Selection

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The OHL Priority Selection was held recently on Saturday April 5, 2014 and a total of six players with connections to Western New York were selected by six different teams. Recent drafts have included players from the area, but this years draft saw more players selected than any time in the last decade.

 

Stephen Dhillon – Round 3 – 52nd Overall – Niagara IceDogs

 

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Stephen Dhillon, a 6’3” 165 lb goaltender from Buffalo, NY was the first player off the board after being selected in the 3rd round, 52nd overall by the Niagara IceDogs. Dhillon participated in the USA Hockey Select 15 Player Development camp this past summer at the Northtown Center in Amherst. In addition to his selection to this camp, Dhillon was one six goalies invited to the 52 member tryout roster for the National U17 team. The National U17 teams is the flagship program under the United States National Team Development Program for players of this age group.

Buffalo, NY

Position: Goaltender

Shoots: Left

Height: 6’2″

Weight: 165 lbs

Current Team: Buffalo Regals – U15 – SCTAMM

Previous Team: Buffalo Regals – U15 – SCTAMM

 

Junior Draft Status:

Drafted 2014, Round 3 #52 overall by Niagara IceDogs in the OHL Priority Selection

 

 

Anthony Hora – Round 5 – 91st Overall – Owen Sound Attack

 

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Amherst, NY

Position: Defense

Shoots: Left

Height: 6’0″

Weight: 170 lbs

Current Team: Buffalo Junior Sabres U16 – T1EHL U16

Previous Team: Buffalo Regals – SCTAMM (2013-2014)

 

Austin Osmanski – Round 6 – 105th  Overall – Mississauga

Steelheads

TPH 20 Austin Osmanski

East Aurora, NY

Position: Defense

Shoots: Left

Height: 6’2″

Weight: 175 lbs

Current Team: Buffalo Regals U15 – SCTAMM

Previous Team: Buffalo Reglas U15 – SCTAMM

 

Junior Draft Status:

- Drafted 2014, Round 6 #105 overall by Mississauga Steelheads in the OHL Priority Selection

 

Tyler Johnson – Round 7 – 127th Overall – Plymouth Whalers

 

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Amherst, NY

Position: Goaltender

Catches: Left

Height: 6’1″

Weight: 175 lbs

Current Team: Northern Cyclones – EJEPL

Previous Team: Northern Cyclones – EJEPL

 

Junior Draft Status:

- Drafted 2014, Round 7 #127 overall by Plymouth Whalers in the OHL Priority Selection

 

Joseph Cecconi – Round 8 – 143rd Overall – Oshawa Generals

 

Joseph Cecconi (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

Joseph Cecconi (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

Youngstown, NY

Position: Defense

Shoots: Right

Height: 6’2″

Weight: 195 lbs

Current Team: Muskegon Lumberjacks – USHL

Previous Team: Buffalo Jr Sabres U16 – T1EHL U16 (2013-2014)

 

Junior Draft Status:

- Drafted 2013, Round 5 #70 overall by Green Bay Gamblers in the USHL Entry Draft

- Drafted 2014, Round 8 #143 overall by Oshawa Generals in the OHL Priority Selection

 

College Commitment:

- None

 

Matthew Jakubowski – Round 11 – 220th Overall – Guelph Storm

 

TPH 2 Matthew Jakubowski

East Aurora, NY

Position: Center

Shoots: Left

Height: 5’9″

Weight: 155 lbs

Current Team: Buffalo Regals U15 – SCTAMM

Previous Team: Buffalo Reglas U15 – SCTAMM

 

Junior Draft Status:

- Drafted 2014, Round 11 #220 overall by Guelph Storm in the OHL Priority Selection

Apr 04

Kyle Mackey Commits to Air Force

Air Force logo
The Western New York’s area has added another commitment to their list as Kyle Mackey has committed to play hockey The United States Air Force Academy.  Mackey, a Derby, NY native has spent the last two seasons playing for the Youngstown Phantoms of the USHL. The 6’1″ 170 lb defenseman has 1 goal and 14 assists for 15 points in 46 games this season and plays solid defensive game.

 

Mackey played for St. Francis in Buffalo before playing for the Buffalo Junior Sabres U18 team for two seasons prior to his time with Youngstown.  Mackey will be joining a very successful program with the Air Force Academy as the Falcons have won The Atlantic Hockey Association postseason conference tournament in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012 as well as having made appearances in the NCAA Tournament as the AHA Champion during each of these seasons.

Apr 02

Sitting Down With Western New York’s Hockey Photographer Dan Hickling

DanThroughout the creation and growth of this website I ran across Dan Hickling, a sports photographer who all winter long can be found at countless rinks throughout Western New York and Southern Ontario shooting hockey games from AAA Travel, Junior, NCAA, AHL and NHL.  I have been lucky enough to receive permission to use Dan’s work on the site and I believe his photographs have been extremely beneficial to the growth and development of Western New York Hockey Prospects.  Dan took some time out of his day to tell me about his love of hockey and photography and what got him interested in bringing them both together.

 

 

 

Website:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/dan_hickling/sets/

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/DanHickling

 

When did you get into photography & how old were you?
I didn’t pick up a camera until five years ago, so that would have made me 55. I started shooting out of necessity, actually. I was working for a small daily newspaper in New England, and the sports editor, who also did all the photos, left for a better job. Thus the camera passed into my hands, and I kind of took to it right away. It was as though the Good Lord was saying, “I’ve got something new for you to do.”
What subject matter did you start with originally?
All I’ve ever shot is sports. It was baseball season when I took over the camera, so that would be the answer.
What photographers are you inspired by originally and why?
There are so many great lensmen, and each one has a unique eye. The ones who inspire me, do so, by the way they conduct themselves. That list would include Bill Wippert, who is the chief fotog for the Sabres and the First Niagara Center.
Where did you grow up in what were your interests when you were younger did you play sports?
I am Chautauqua County born and raised. Born in Silver Creek, raised in Cassadaga on a golf course. I was always interested in sports, first it was baseball, but when I discovered hockey, I was hooked. However, I was not especially gifted athletically — that message came through loud and clear when I was cut from the Little League farm team — so I found other ways to enjoy sports.
Where did you go to high school and where did you attend college?
I graduated from Cassadaga Valley Central School (Class of ’71) – with the young lady who became the love of my life – but had just one very ignominious year of college at Hilbert..
When did you start shooting sports?
As stated above, I started shooting in 2009, almost by accident. I had been a sports writer for a couple decades, but soon discovered I enjoyed shooting more than writing.
When did you pick up an interest in hockey?
My first memories of hockey came from my grandmother. She would listen to hockey games on her bedroom radio and that was my introduction. That was in the pre-NHL expansion days — the Original Six — and even to this day, I prefer listening to hockey on radio than watching it on TV (by the way, I don’t own one of those). Then again, nothing beats being there. As I got a little older (still in high school), I could pick up hockey broadcasts from all over in the dead of a Chautauqua County winter, and began to get up to Buffalo for a few Bisons games. By then, it seemed certain that Buffalo would get an NHL team, so I bought Bisons season tickets in their final year (69-70) to insure I could get Sabres season tickets. Life took many strange twists after that, the trail led all over the map, but the hockey passion remained.
When did you start shooting hockey pictures?
My first hockey shots were in New England (back in 2009) — AHL, high school, etc.
What makes shooting hockey pictures so fun and interesting for you?
The first thing is my love of the sport. I think I know the game pretty well, so I can often anticipate what might happen. Hockey players often talk about slowing the game down in their heads, and the same is true for photographers. The other interesting element rests in the facial expressions. I covered games in press boxes for years and during that whole time, missed out on that part of the game.
Hockey is a very fast-paced sport, how do you balance following the play and trying to get the best shot while looking through a lens?
As I said, the ability to anticipate is crucial. Figuring out what might happen around the net, in the corners, along the boards, in the face off circle. Also, being aware of who is on the ice helps me guess what might come next.
Can you give us a brief history of your work as a photographer and where you were employed or where your pictures could be found before the Internet?
Guess I’m best called the “Accidental Photographer”, but I don’t mind that. It’s a skill that has become useful as a freelancer. I’ve been privileged to shoot for a few papers, websites, and the like.
Have you made your living as a photographer or do you have another job?
Very few make a full time living as a sports photographer. You wag your tail for whomever pats your head. In my case, writing was more my bread and butter, but that is slowly turning the other way.
What is your current camera and lens setup and what do you normally take to the rink to shoot?
I just keep it simple. I have a Nikon D7000 with a Tamron lens, 70-200, f 2.8
For a first time or entry level photographer looking to get into shooting sports like hockey what are three things that you’ve learned not to do that people could benefit from knowing?
First I would say don’t get frustrated over shots you’ve missed. Enjoy the ones you get. Also, be prepared to take a lot of snaps with the view to getting just a few really good ones. On a typical Sabres’ day (from AM skate to post game pressers) I’ll take about 3,000 shots. Obviously, not all of those are going to be “keepers”. Margaret, who is also my crack photo editor, winds up deleting plenty of those. Lastly, I’d say hang on to your photos. Get an external hard drive and file (dates, locales) the shots. You will want the memories, you will end up with useful file photos, and should notice an improvement in your skills over time.
What are three things that you’ve learned that you think new photographers would could benefit from knowing?
Have fun, have fun, and lastly, have fun.
What words of wisdom could you give to you fans of photography or people looking at you do what you do and would like to do it for a living?
Don’t quit your day job, at least not at first. Not until you’ve discovered whether you really love to shoot, and are willing to go to all lengths to shoot what you love. And even then, don’t spend money you don’t have on equipment. Learn humbly, outgrow what equipment you have before investing in more. Oh, and did I mention? Have fun!

Apr 01

2014 Scotty Bowman Showcase Rosters Released

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Today sabres.com released the Buffalo and Rochester player rosters for the 10th annual Scotty Bowman Showcase.  The Junior, Senior and Prep games will be held at 6:00, 7:30 & 9:00 P.M. at the First Niagara Center on Wednesday April 9th, 2014.  Tickets are $5 each.

2014 Bowman Cup – Rochester RostersUPDATE

2014 Bowman Cup – Buffalo Rosters

Apr 01

10 Question With Dylan Blujus

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1.  Where in Buffalo did you grow up? Explain a little bit what or who got you interested in playing hockey and what your first hockey experiences were like. 

 

I grew up in Amherst and growing up I had an older brother Austin and I always went to his hockey games and tournaments. That’s when I started getting interested. My Dad ran a novice program and because he ran it he got me in at a younger age to start skating in the novice program.

 

2.  Who was the biggest influence on your hockey career while you were still in Buffalo?

 

My biggest influences were my parents and brother growing up and they still are to this date. They were always there to support me and gave up alot of their time to get me to early morning practices and long road trips and to tournaments.

 

3. What was your hockey career like in Buffalo growing up before playing with the Buffalo Regals U18 team?

 

Growing up I played everywhere in Buffalo. I played for both my age group and for the 1993 age group growing up. I played for the Buffalo Regals for two years to start my minor hockey and then the Amherst Knights for two years. I then played with the Wheatfield Blades for another few years and then the Buffalo Regals U16 and ended with the Buffalo Regals U18 program.

 

4. Although the Buffalo Regals program has always been successful it seems like more and more, the quality of the players coming from that program is increasing. Lately there has been a jump in the number of former Regals playing in the OHL, NCAA, USHL, NAHL, OJHL and many other high level leagues around the country. What do you think it is about the Buffalo Regals program that breeds this type of success?

 

Well there is a ton of hockey talent in Buffalo. With the Regals program, from the coaches to the organization itself, I think it is one of the best programs in all of New York. It has really grabbed people’s attention recently with all the players moving on. It has caused players from outside of the Buffalo area to come and play for the Regals program because they play in such a competitive league, against some of the best hockey programs from around the United States.

 

5. In 2010 you were drafted by the Brampton Battalion of the Ontario Hockey League as well as the Lincoln Stars of the United States Hockey League. I’m sure you had many options open to you for the 2010-2011 hockey season. What options did you have and what ultimately led you to choose the OHL route and move to Brampton?

 

Well that year I tried out for the USNTDP (United States National Team Development Program) but was not offered one of the top defense spots. I hoping to play on that team but it changed things. I looked at my options and was deciding between the Junior Sabres program and the USHL. While I was making my decision I was told about a good opportunity in the OHL with The Brampton Battalion who had just lost their top four defenseman from the previous season. Brampton told me they had a spot to draft me in the 3rd round. After some thinking and talking with my family we thought it would be the best decision for my future to go to the OHL even though it meant I was giving up the opportunity of college scholarship to play NCAA Division 1 hockey in The United States.

 

6. What was the move like for you and your family? Can you describe what it was like to live away from home with a billet family at such a young age? How did your parents take it? Did they get to come see you often in Brampton given that you were only about two hours from Buffalo?

 

The move was obviously something that was tough for me and my parents with me moving away from home at such a young age. It was tough at first but I moved in with a great billet family in Brampton that took me in and really took care of me. They made moving away from home a lot easier for me.  Brampton ended up being a great location because it was only an hour and a half drive from my home in Buffalo so it made it very easy for my family to come up and see me play every weekend. Many of the road games were close enough for them to come and see me play as well.  Because it was so easy for my parents to come see me, it made the move easier for me because I could still see my family every weekend.  I also had a good amount of chances to make the trip home, sometimes for just a day or two.

 

7. During your second season in Brampton you finished with 7 goals & 27 assists for 34 points.  That summer you were taken in the 2nd Round, 40th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Describe what that day was like for you and your family. Did you have any idea how high you would be going? Were you aware Tampa Bay was interested in you or was it a surprise when they selected you?

 

It was an amazing day and it was almost too much excitement in one day for me to take it all in. I did have talks with Tampa throughout the season and they expressed interest in me.  They told me at the time they had a lot of picks in the 2nd Round and they made it seem that they were interested in taking me with one of those picks. You don’t always know though when you’re at the draft because things change. Some players are taken and some are not so I was just waiting for my name to be called by any team. When my name was called in the second round by the Tampa Bay Lightning I could not have been more excited knowing that I was drafted by such a great organization. It was even better that I got to share that great moment with my entire family and some of my friends.

 

8. Last summer, for the second year in a row, you participated in the Lighting’s Prospect Development Camp. What was it like getting to see and play with some of the organization’s other prospects?  What was it like learning from NHL coaches and trainers and what was the biggest thing you took away from your time at the Development Camp?

 

It was a great experience for me at the development camp just being there with the other prospects. It was good to get there and kind of get a glimpse of what an NHL camp was like with all the practices being run by NHL coaches. It really opened my eyes to all the great talent that was in the organization and also the wide range of player ages represented. Some guys were older and it really showed me how much hard work you have to put in to your summer training to build strength and speed to get to that next level.

 

9. Following the 2012-2013 season you were one of 40 players invited to the 2014 USA World Junior Championship Evaluation Camp in Lake Placid, NY. What was that experience like?

 

It was an honor just to get the call from them to let me know that I was selected to try out for the USA World Junior Team. It was a really cool experience going to Lake Placid for the first time and getting to play against other countries in the exhibition games. I didn’t end up getting the result I wanted after being cut from the team but there was a ton of talent there and just being put in that Top 40 tryout was an honor for me.

 

10. You are known mostly as being a big, sound defensive defenseman with a strong offensive upside as your numbers during your time with the Battalion have shown. Being such a high draft pick, the Lightning obviously have big expectations for you. What do you see as some of the strengths in your game? Also, what do you think you need to improve upon the most in your game to get you to the next level in your career?

 

I think after playing four years now in the OHL I have really grown as a player. I have always been a good two way defenseman but playing against such great talent in the OHL has allowed me to really work on my game a lot. I have tried to improve my all around game, but especially my defensive game and I think I have done that this year playing on the top defensive pairing and shutting down the top line of our opponents.

 

So Dylan, What are your plans for next year?

My plans are still up in the air right now but I’m hoping to move on from the OHL and to start playing with the Syracuse Crunch in the AHL.

Mar 31

Buffalo Jr. Sabres U16 Going To Tier 1 Nationals

Beginning tomorrow The Buffalo Junior Sabres U16 Team will begin their bid for the 2014 USA Hockey Tier 1 National Championship held in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Junior Sabres will begin pool play starting with a 2 PM puck drop against Thunder Hockey AAA. The Junior Sabres U16 will compete in Pool A along with Thunder Hockey (Georgia) Detroit Honeybaked (Michigan) and the Central CT Capitals / Selects Academy (Connecticut). The Top 2 teams from each of the four pools will move on and play in the finals bracket.

 

Owen Green (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

Owen Green (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

 

The Junior Sabres have not played any of the teams in their pool thus far but as you would expect at Nationals, they will not have an easy road to out of Pool A. Currently, myhockeyrankings.com has Honeybaked #1 overall, Central CT Capitals / Selects Academy #8 and Thunder Hockey slightly further back at #36. Buffalo will not be outclassed by any means though as the Junior Sabres currently sit #10 overall and finished their season playing out of the Tier 1 Elite Hockey League with a 46-18-2 record.

 

Chris Berger (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

Chris Berger (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

 

It seems for fans of Western New York Hockey Prospects there will be quite a few players to follow for the Junior Sabres during Nationals in Green Bay.  The Junior Sabres will certainly miss the play of defenseman Joe Cecconi who was mid-season call up by the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL, a team currently in a tight race for the 4th and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.  Even without Cecconi there are plenty of very talented players to keep an eye on, notably 2013 OHL Entry Draft selection Owen Green.  Green, a 6’4″ 200 lb forward was an 9th Round selection (170th overall) by the North Bay Battalion and was also taken in the 6th Round (83rd overall) by the Muskegon Lumberjacks in the USHL Entry Draft.  Green has 23 goals & 45 assists for 68 points in 64 games so far this season.  Another player to watch will be Chris Berger, a 5’9″ 155 lb forward who notched 28 goals & 24 assists for 52 points in. Berger, along with 6’0″ 170 lb defenseman Anthony Hora – brother of current Kitchener Ranger defenseman Frank Hora – were recent attendees of the 2014 OHL Combine.  The Junior Sabres leading scorer Collin Rutherford’s name has also been talked about by scouts as a potential selection for the upcoming 2014 OHL Entry Draft which will be held beginning at 9 A.M. on April 5th, 2014.

 

Anthony Hora (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

Anthony Hora (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

 

Mar 27

Andrew Poturalski 5th in USHL Scoring

Andrew Poturalski

 

With just over a week to play in the regular season, Andrew Poturalski is leading the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders in scoring.  Poturalski is also 5th overall among all USHL scoring with 24 goals & 35 assists for 59 points in 56 games.  The 5’10″ 175 lb forward is a native of Williamsville, NY and is a former Buffalo Junior Sabre as well as a 2011 graduate of The Nichols School.  Following this season, his second with the RoughRiders, Poturalski will be attending the University of New Hampshire to play NCAA Division 1 Hockey for the Bobcats.

 

Mar 25

10 Questions With Trevor Mingoia

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1.  You grew up in Rochester, NY.  How did you start playing hockey and who helped you the most when you were just starting out? 

I started playing hockey after always being at the rink to watch my older brother Tyler play in his hockey games.

 

2.  What was it like growing up and playing hockey in Rochester? What teams did you play for in Rochester before leaving to play Prep School (Travel, High School, Juniors?)

Growing up playing in Rochester was a great experience and I made such amazing relationships and friendships, and really was able to grow and a player and person. I played for the Rochester Americans, then I went on to play for the Syracuse stars, then played one year with the Rochester Alliance. I also played my freshman and sophomore year at Fairport high school before heading off to play at Berkshire for a repeat sophomore year and my junior and senior seasons. 

 

3. For your sophomore, junior and senior seasons of high school you played at the Berkshire School, a Prep School in Massachusetts with a very competitive and successful hockey program. What was that choice for you and your family?

I played three years and Berkshire, and it was the best decision I could have made. I was physically smaller than most at my age and most were moving on to junior hockey so I made the choice to go to prep school and develop not only in hockey but as a student.

 

4. New England Prep Schools are known for more than just hockey with their emphasis on education and extremely high academic standards. What was it like trying to adjust to living away from home and maintaining your grades while playing Prep Hockey?

I found the transition to prep school smooth because I was so used to traveling for hockey and staying with other families or in a hotel. I was very focused on the learning curve of the change from public high school and prep school. I was able to transition easily because of the great teachers there and my coaches at Berkshire being able to guide me through the beginning of the year.

 

5. Following your senior season at Berkshire you played at Union as a true freshman. Can you describe the recruiting process, how it works and what made you decide to play at Union?

The recruiting process was a very exciting one, and being recruited by coach Leaman was very comforting. I really like the upswing that the program was on and I thought it would be amazing to join a time on such a rise and with the coaches there I was very excited to be a part of it.

 

6. Due to longer Junior A careers before moving on to college hockey, many freshmen these days are much older than you were when you started playing at Union. Did you notice a difference between yourself and some of the other freshman? If not, why. If so, what did you do to try and stand out?

I definitely noticed a difference between the older freshman and me. I was a young player both physically and mentally. I had to stand out by my smarts on the ice and my creativity.

 

7. Just before your freshman season at Union, your coach Nate Leaman left the program and accepted the head coaching job at Providence College. You decided to transfer and follow Coach Leaman to Providence. Why did you choose to leave and what made you think that following your coach to Providence was better for your career than staying at Union?

Coach Leaman actually decided to leave Union on his own to take on a new job at Providence College. I was recruited by Coach Leaman and Coach Barr to go to Union but they ended up leaving 2 months or so before my freshman year at so I never got to play for either of them, and I walked into the program with a coaching staff that I didn’t really have a relationship with. So after my freshman year with the new coaching staff I decided to leave after the first semester of my sophomore year at Union and go to the USHL to play for the Tri City Storm. I chose Providence because I really wanted to play for the coaches who originally recruited me to play college hockey, and Providence was just the right fit for me.

 

8. Because of NCAA eligibility rules, you were forced to sit out for the entire 2012-2013 NCAA hockey season and played the year with the Tri-City Storm of the USHL. After playing Prep School and then moving on to college what was it like playing in the USHL? Did you still attend college and if so can you describe the difference between Prep and College hockey and life playing in the USHL?

From prep school to college was a big jump, but going from college to the USHL was not much of a difference. It felt like college hockey but with less speed and less physicality. I took seven classes online during the first half of the season and five during the last half of the season. Prep hockey is very fun and its like playing for a small college. College hockey is a business and that is your job. It is a much more serious place to play hockey but it is an amazing time and experience. Life in the USHL was the greatest experience of my hockey career. I made amazing friendships and my billet family was truly unbelievable. I had the time of my life in the USHL.

 

9. You had to wait until late November before you were eligible to play for Providence but since you came in you’ve been able to contribute immediately with 4 goals and 9 assists for 13 points in 23 games. What do you think is the reason you’ve been able to come in half way through the year and help out offensively right away?

I was put into a good situation being able to practice the first half of the year and really continue to develop as a player before getting into games again. By the time I was able to compete in games again I was just able to play with confidence, and playing for a coaching staff that believed in me was most important to the success, not to mention my teammate who were great throughout the whole process.

 

10. You and the Providence Friars are on your way to playing in the 16 team NCAA Division 1 Tournament and have a 1st round matchup against Quinnipiac, who lost in last season’s championship game. What is it going to take for you and the Friars to get past Quinnipiac and on to the next round?

It is going to take a full team effort with everyone playing their roles and buying into what we need to do on the ice. We are a team that isn’t satisfied with just making it to the tournament, we want to win it, and I think that team drive is going to help us move onto the next round.

 

Mar 21

Anthony Petrella Commits to UMass

MSM 9 Anthony Petrella 2

Anthony Petrella (Image Courtesy of Dan Hickling)

 

Anthony Petrella has finally made his NCAA Division 1 college commitment and the UMass Minutemen will be the beneficiaries of his decision as he committed to the program yesterday.  Petrella, a native of Hilton, NY and Western New York Hockey Prospects #9 overall rated player has spent the last two seasons terrorizing defenses as a member of the Shattuck-St. Mary’s Sabres Prep program.  Shattuck is widely regarded as one of the top Prep School programs in the country and boasts alumni such as Drew Stafford, Jack Johnson, Zach Parise, Derek Stepan, Jonathon Toews & Sidney Crosby.  

 

During this past season Petrella really took his game to another level leading the team in goal scoring, finishing with 34 goals & 32 assists for 66 points over 45 games.  He finished just as single point behind Boston University commit Clayton Keller for the overall team lead in points.  Petrella has high end offensive instincts and his scoring ability will be felt immediately as he will begin play as a true freshman next year for the 214-2015 season.  From what I was told Petrella was being very heavily recruited by 10-12 programs between Big 10 and Hockey East. The 5’9′ 190lb forward is eligible for this years 2014 NHL Entry Draft and I wouldn’t at all be surprised to see a team take him in the 3-5 round range.  My previous analysis of Petrella can be found below.



Hilton, NY

Position: Forward

Shoots: Left

Height: 5’9″

Weight: 190 lbs

Current Team: Shattuck – St Mary’s Prep Sabres

Previous Team: Belle Tire U18 (2011-2012)

 

NHL Draft Status:

- Eligible 2014

Junior Draft Status:

- Drafted 2012, Round 4 #58 overall by Dubuque Fighting Saints in the USHL Futures Draft

 

Western New York Hockey Prospects Ranking: #9

 

Currently entering his Senior season, his second as a member of the Sabres Prep team, Anthony Petrella will have more than just coaches and fans watching him this season. As a first year player with the national power Shattuck – St. Mary’s Sabres, Petrella finished the season with 26 goals and 28 assists for 54 points in 57 games and looks to add to this number for the 2013-2014 season. If Petrella plays like he did last season, and with another year of experience under his belt its hard to image him not, he could likely be a mid to late round selection in the 2014 NHL Draft.

 

Not known to many people outside of hockey circles in Western New York, Petrella’s name may be one you hear more often during the upcoming season. Currently property of the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the USHL, Petrella has a number of options available to him after his final season in Fairbault, MN. He is not currently committed to an NCAA hockey program but will surely be fielding offers from many of the strongest programs in the country before deciding to continue his career in the USHL with Dubuque or move right into a spot with an NCAA Team. Some Western New York Hockey fans will get a chance to see Anthony Petrella in action as his Shattuck – St. Mary’s Sabres Prep squad will be playing its counterpart from The Nichols School during the 2013-2014 season.

 

Mar 20

NCAA Conference Tournament Weekend Preview – Big 10

#3 Michigan (USCHO #12) Vs. #6 Penn State 

Thursday March 20th – XCel Energy Center – St. Paul, MN 3:00 P.M. – Big 10 Network

 

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The Michigan Wolverines open play in the first ever Big 10 Tournament this Thursday against the Penn State Nittany Lions at the XCel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN.  In net for the Wolverines likely be freshman goaltender Zach Nagelvoort.  Nagelvoort took over for Williamsville, NY native Steve Racine when he went down with an injury and played very well in his absence.  Racine has since returned and started in six of eight since returning but according to College Hockey News writer Jashvina Shah, Berenson has said it is likely Nagelvoort gets the start this afternoon in St. Paul.  Racine has posted solid numbers when healthy this year and has more playoff experience.  He led the Wolverines to the CCHA Finals last season as a freshman, losing 3-1 to a very strong Notre Dame team.  If Michigan loses to Penn State, they very likely will lose out on an at large bid and it seems odd Berenson would opt for the less experienced Nagelvoort in essentially a do or die game but if he struggles early, don’t be surprised if he is replaced by Racine.

 

#4 Ohio State Vs. #5 Michigan State 

Thursday March 20th – XCel Energy Center – St. Paul, MN 7:00 P.M. – Big 10 Network

 

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As most teams in six team conference would be, the Michigan State Spartans and Ohio State Buckeyes have become very familiar with each other during this inaugural  Big Ten hockey season.  Of the four regular season games these two teams have played, three went to OT and ended in ties decided by shootout.  Ohio State took the only regulation decision, a 5-3 win in Columbus.  This matchup figures to be a very heated battle as games like this tend to be when two teams have so much familiarity.  Greece, NY freshman forward J.T. Stenglein has suited up in 15 games for the Spartans notching a goal in his first season in East Lansing.  Playing time does not come easy in the Big 10 and with six players graduating this fall, Stenglein will likely find a much larger role with the team in his second season.

 

#2 Wisconsin (USCHO #6) Vs. Game 1 Winner

Friday March 21st – XCel Energy Center – St. Paul, MN 2:00 P.M. – Big 10 Network

 

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One of the team to watch in the Big 10 Tournament and eventually in the NCAA Tournament will be #6 nationally ranked Wisconsin Badgers.  One of the players to watch on the Badgers is Rochester, NY senior forward Mark Zengerle who together with Nic Kerdiles and Tyler Barnes form one of college hockey’s most potent scoring lines this season.  They’ve been on fire recently, combining for 54 points in the last 14 games of the season and much of Wisconsin’s late season play can be attributed to the play of Zengerle and his linemates.  During his four seasons in Madison, Zengerle has grown into one of the top playmakers in college hockey.  He has registered 36 goals and 121 assists for 157 points in 148 games.  In 2011 he was invited to the Toronto Maple Leafs development camp and although he went undrafted, will certainly garner major interest from more than a few teams as a free agent following the NCAA Tournament.  Wisconsin will make the NCAA Tournament no matter where they finish this weekend and will be a threat to win a National Title if Zengerle and company keep up their recent play together

 

For the full College Hockey News article about Zengerle, Kerdiles and Barnes see Jashvina Shah’s writeup here:

http://www.collegehockeynews.com/news/2014/03/18_trio_bravo.php

 

 

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