PDA

View Full Version : Union Hockey Official off Season Thread: Can U Three Peat?



Pages : 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 [10] 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25

rdf8585
06-03-2013, 12:56 PM
Coburn signs with Ilves Tampere of the Finnish Elite League: http://unionhockeynews.blogspot.com/2013/06/coburn-inks-deal-overseas.html

ADK11
06-03-2013, 04:39 PM
OK, better late than never.. time for my (in)famous recruits summary. There are 5 graduates to replace plus Mingoia and Grosenick, so need to replace 3 forwards, 3 d-men, 1 goalie.

Might as well jump right to the recruit named Mike with the Italian last name that is one of the most highly anticipated in Union’s history. He is a quick, elusive skater with exceptional puck skills, a hard accurate shot, plays with a lot of energy and is not afraid to mix it up despite being slightly undersized. He’s had success at every level he has played in and best of all, is Hokydad’s godson!! (joke). That’s right I’m talking about the “other Mike”..

• Mike Vecchione, RW, Tri-City (USHL), 5-10, 190#, ’93 DOB, 65gms-26G-36A-62pts-1.0pts/gm-75PIM - (-7): 29 points in 49 games with Tri-City previous season. Prior to that was a hot-shot at Malden Catholic HS and was widely considered one of the best HS players in Boston. Had 83 points in 25 games his senior year at MC and team won Super 8 (state) title. Previously committed to UNH but decommitted when they asked him to do another season in the USHL before matriculating. I saw video of him from two seasons ago and prior, and while you could certainly see the skills, he still looked raw and a little out of control at times. This season his game really came together. He looks like a very polished offensive player. Below is a link to highlights from every one of Tri-City’s home games this past season, and Mr. Vecchione (BTW rhymes with “macaroni”) features prominently. A couple of good games to check out are the ones on 1/25 (hat trick), 1/29 (3 pts & lots of fights), and 4/13 (another 3 pts). As a BTW, the level of play in the USHL is very impressive. http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLIvzcVysVOPoiJOr0-ypjx1lyQ9AABRan

• Jeff Taylor, LD, Dubuque (USHL), 5-11, 165#, ’93: 57-5-22-27-0.5-16-(+41), ’11-12 Albany Academy 26-10-28-38-1.5: A mobile offensive type d-man that put up outstanding +/- in the USHL, though should note Dubuque was an excellent team. Is undersized in the Bodie/Ghost mold, but from limited video is a terrific passer and makes good puck decisions. Below is a link to a game with Tri-City where Taylor (#2) makes a nice pass that leads to a goal around the 3:15 mark. There are other game highlights video of Dubuque on YouTube, though are not real high quality. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHUSwOoh03M&list=PLIvzcVysVOPoiJOr0-ypjx1lyQ9AABRan&index=25

• Eli Lichtenwald, LW, Nipawin (SJHL), 6-6, 211#, ’92, 19-9-13-22-1.2-10, Omaha (USHL) 28-3-7-10-0.4-38-(-3) team captain, ’11-12 Omaha 42-5-14-19-0.5-34-(+4), ’10-11 Nipiwan 56-21-24-45-0.8-8: See video of two Tri-City games with Omaha early in the season and you’ll get some glimpses of Eli. In a word, he his HUGE, not sure U has ever had a skater this big. Is difficult to project how he will do at the next level, as his numbers in the USHL weren’t great and the SJHL is a weaker Jr. A, but I know the coaches are very high on him. He does look like a decent skater, but my take is he may be more David Roy than Jeremy Welsh. Big potential though.

• Griff Martin, LD, Avon (NE Prep), 6-1, 177#, ’94, 27-3-14-17-0.6, '11-12 Avon 27-4-9-13-0.5: Decommitted from Yale and U scooped him. USHR had him as a pre-season All-Prep dman and the blog New England Hockey Daily had him as a 2nd team All-Prep at the end of the season. Logged a ton of minutes for Avon. Below are a couple of videos with some game highlights and links to other Avon videos (Martin is #6, makes a nice assist in the first video ~30 sec). Looks like a very well rounded dman with decent size that will probably be more D oriented in college, perhaps similar to Brock Matheson. Liikely need time to adjust from preps. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fOW8SmmdV1s http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWQoLblQOjw

• Alex Gonye, LC, Deerfield (NE Prep), 6-1, 191#, ’92, 24-6-18-24-1.0, '11-12 Deerfield 25-18-15-33-1.3: Ranked a ‘C’ player on NHL Central Scouting watch list in 2012. USHR had very positive word on him when committed to Union and felt he has big potential though not fulfilled yet. As a center is an important replacement for graduated players like Bodie, Welsh & Zajac. Came into this season projected as a top forward in NE Preps but put up very mediocre numbers, though Deerfield was not good. Found a video that shows him a little (#19). He is a big kid with potential. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANf_SW4Xh1E

• Matthew Krug, LD, Indiana (USHL), 6-1(?), 202#, ’92, 52-3-8-11-0.2-54-(-13), Asst. Captain, ’11-12 Indiana 56-2-9-11-0.2-24-(-3), ’10-11 Buffalo (OJHL) 50-10-34-44-0.9-32: Listed height in USHL 6-0, Indiana 6-1, OJHL 6-2 so took the middle. Indiana was not very good, so point numbers may not mean much, though did have one of the better +/- on the team. Could not find any video on him, but appears to be a solid defensive d-man that can handle the puck.

• Tyler Hynes, RW, Omaha (USHL), 5-11, 183#, ’93, 53-6-9-15-0.3-38-(-3); NE Prep '11-12, 32-33-27-60-1.9: Was one of the top scorers in NE Preps at Albany Academy two seasons ago, but had a tougher time putting up numbers in the USHL this past season, though obviously was not on a top scoring line. I did see him a couple times at AA and is more of a grinder that gets points by working hard in the tough areas of the ice – not a bad thing at all.

• Alex Sakellaropolous, G, Chicago (USHL), 6-2, 220#, ’92, 48gms-3.03GAA-0.914save%, ’11-12 25-3.28-0.903%: There is a very good video of one of his games this year showing him making a lot of saves. My critique of this one game is that he is big, goes down a lot, and doesn’t look very mobile. This could add up to trouble at the college level, but this only one game and his numbers are actually very good for the USHL so maybe I’m missing something. Overall should be a reasonable backup goalie and could develop into more. http://www.nahdigest.com/video/chicago-steel-goalie-highlights-alex-sakellaropoulos-november-17-2012/

Overall this a “good” class and fills some important immediate needs. I’m always cautious in expecting too much from freshmen forwards since you never know how any individual will adjust, but have to say I am very high on Vecchione and feel the coaches could have a hard time keeping him out of the top 6. He has the potential to be a major contributor right out of the box. Also optimistic about Taylor and would expect him to get significant ice, as he is a logical successor to the offensive QB roles that Bodie & Ghost currently fill. Also would expect Martin to get a good look, as there will be plenty of opportunity on the blueline next fall. Beyond that, how good this class turns out in the long run will depend on how the other players develop – particularly Lichtenwald, Gonye & “the Big Greek”. Forward depth will be an issue after next season’s seniors graduate and there will need to be a replacement for Stevens in 2 seasons, so this is a very important class.

As for the recruits after next season, I noticed that Mr. P tweeted that he had “a great couple days at his future home” after visiting Schenectady, so that is hopefully a good sign that he shows up in fall ’14. My feeling is it would be a huge crapshoot going MJ for one season and hope to get signed by the pros. Hoping he ends up in the USHL next season and we’ll get a better read on how he does against tougher competition. Also will be interesting to see how Scarfo and Henry do in the BCHL next season. Scarfo essentially lost the whole NE Preps season to injury, but was projected to be one of the top forwards. He is a bigger kid like Gonye and more of a power forward. Henry is supposed to be a mobile offensive minded d-man, though didn’t shown it last season in BC (13 pts in 52 games). Dufour and Young definitely could use an extra year of seasoning. Dufour had very good numbers at Kents Hill (NE Preps) this past season (27 goals in 35 games), but needs much tougher competition in order to develop. I’d be surprised to see him in the USHL, more likely BC or Eastern Jrs. Young had a tough season with injuries and also could use more D time, most likely with the Jr. Bruins again.

Of interest, there is a new junior league forming in the east that is called the US Premier Hockey League (USPHL). It is essentially several of the same franchises that are in the EJHL (including all the top ones like the Jr. Bruins, New Jersey, New Hampshire), but would be at a higher level than the EJHL (i.e. more financial support). The idea is that all the teams in the USPHL must have feeder teams of U16s & U18s, as well as keeping EJHL teams, with an ultimate goal of having feeder programs even below the U16 level. The league is hoping to challenge the USHL and keep more eastern kids in the east. They will be an independent junior league next season and hope to be fully sanctioned by US Hockey for 2014. Keep an eye on Young & Dufour to see if they end up in this league.

Wholin1
06-04-2013, 09:46 PM
ADK, thanks for your usual thorough and in depth analysis of U's incoming recruits. Like Forrest's box of chocolates you never know what you're going to get, but the anticipation makes it interesting.

rdf8585
06-05-2013, 02:15 AM
Thanks for the write-up! Overall, it seems like a solid class to me. Vecchione and Taylor seem like the best bets for immediate impact.

Time will tell when Union officially announces the incoming class... for what it's worth, it has been in July the past two years.

rdf8585
06-06-2013, 02:39 PM
Troy Grosenick named to the Capital One Academic All-American third team: http://bit.ly/14BwIqB

rdf8585
06-10-2013, 10:10 PM
Ryan Forgaard and Shawn Stuart signed by Drakkars of French Elite League: http://bit.ly/19jmLVQ

Wholin1
06-12-2013, 09:16 PM
Good luck to volunteer assistant coach Joel Beal who will be leaving for an assistant position at Sacred Heart. He will be missed

rdf8585
06-16-2013, 11:47 PM
Pontarelli says no to the USHL and stays in Cornwall: http://bit.ly/13MLqxe

By the way, Pontarelli's jersey from this past season is currently on display at the hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.

ADK11
06-17-2013, 08:14 AM
Pontarelli says no to the USHL and stays in Cornwall: http://bit.ly/13MLqxe

By the way, Pontarelli's jersey from this past season is currently on display at the hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.Not happy to hear this.. I was hoping he'd go USHL or BCHL. I mean he was the leading scorer in CCHL and had over 50 goals despite missing the first 2 weeks of the season.. he needs tougher competition to continue developing. I hope he doesn't get any offers from Major Junior..

rdf8585
06-19-2013, 03:26 PM
I confirmed that Tyson Fulton has left Union: http://bit.ly/12VRxmj

Dutchfan
06-19-2013, 03:29 PM
I confirmed that Tyson Fulton has left Union: http://bit.ly/12VRxmj

Not surprising, he never really found his stride at Union. Hopefully he'll be able to catch on somewhere else. Tyson had a very strong high school career out in Minnesota and there was quite a bit of buzz when he initially committed to Union.

rdf8585
06-19-2013, 03:49 PM
Not surprising, he never really found his stride at Union. Hopefully he'll be able to catch on somewhere else. Tyson had a very strong high school career out in Minnesota and there was quite a bit of buzz when he initially committed to Union.

I remember that. He even popped up on some NHL Draft watch lists and was later a top 20 pick in the USHL draft.

rdf8585
06-19-2013, 09:49 PM
Updating the earlier post, Fulton has latched on at D3 St. John's in Minnesota.

Fulton to the Saint Cloud Times:


“I just kind of had a tough time [at Union]. Things didn’t go the way I wanted them to and I was feeling a little homesick. I‘m a big believer in God. I think things happen for a reason... I’m very excited about the chance I have at St. John's. I think it’s a place I can have a very successful career — both in hockey and academically.”

Fulton, a Minnesota native, was injured early this past season.

ADK11
06-20-2013, 12:43 AM
That's too bad that things didn't work out for Fulton, but he sounds like a great kid and I hope he does well at St. Johns. I was wondering what had happened to him last season and what his future in the program would be.. didn't know he got hurt. From the recruiting end, this shouldn't change anything as there are 4 forwards coming in to replace 2 that graduated plus Mingoia and now Fulton. Suspect the coaches anticipated that something like this was going to happen.

Ralph Baer
06-20-2013, 01:36 AM
It is interesting that players from both RPI (Commers) and Union (Fulton) would both end up at St. John's.

Wicked Slappaahs
06-20-2013, 09:36 AM
Pontarelli staying in Cornwall next season.

http://www.standard-freeholder.com/2013/06/19/pontarelli-staying-with-colts

Wholin1
06-20-2013, 10:11 PM
I never heard anyone from the program talking about MP coming a year early. As the article mentions, the Spinks and Laliberte played additional seasons for the same team and are no slouches. I think there may have be other factors in play as well, such as the family angle. I will just be happy to see him walk on campus in Schenectady next year.

ADK11
06-21-2013, 01:30 PM
I never heard anyone from the program talking about MP coming a year early. As the article mentions, the Spinks and Laliberte played additional seasons for the same team and are no slouches. I think there may have be other factors in play as well, such as the family angle. I will just be happy to see him walk on campus in Schenectady next year.It really does depend on each individual, the style of game they play, and how well they adapt to moving to college etc. I'm sure the RPI folks will correct me if I'm wrong, but seemed like Laliberte struggled a bit his freshman year. He "only" had 14 points and seemed to fade as the season went along.. certainly wasn't the dynamic point producer he was in juniors. Obviously he had a really nice season this past year and looks to be a more major offensive force going forward. I'm hoping that MP will be more like the Spinks or Matthew Peca, who also came straight from the CCHL/CJHL and put up major points. U is really going to have a big void offensively when Carr/Jooris/Bodie graduate and would be nice to have a couple freshmen that could put up 20+ points.

My concern is that Pontarelli hasn't really operated outside his comfort zone in preps or juniors (BTW, his numbers at St. Marks were RIDICULOUS - he had like over 80 goals in something like 54 games) and that a move to a tougher league farther from home would help his transition to the NCAA. MP is lot more like Laliberte than the Spinks; approximately the same size and from Quebec, which can be a bit of a cultural transition to US college. Also concerned that he was kicked out of St. Marks and will have to adjust to an academically rigorous school. As comparison, I'll be interested to see how Vecchione does after coming off 2 seasons in the USHL. I will ultimately agree with Wholin that I can't wait to see him at U regardless and I think his potential is off the charts.

turk181
06-21-2013, 03:30 PM
the Pontarelli/Laliberte comparisons really are, "mirror-like". The biggest adjustment Lali had to make was the physicality of D-1 hockey.....suffering a broken finger that Fr. year was a huge set-back for a player of his caliber. Would've been nice to see the 2 of them compete against each other for more than 1 year.

rdf8585
06-24-2013, 09:08 PM
Charlie Vasaturo, injured late in the season, is back on the ice.

With three veteran defenseman gone, Vasaturo could play an important role next year. He was coming into his own before the injury.