The United States Premier Hockey League saw five 2020-21 champions skate away victorious at the York City Ice Arena in York, Pa., on Sunday, March 7. One team, the Springfield Pics, repeated as the champion in their USPHL 16U American Division. The USPHL congratulates all of its 2020-21 Midget Champions.
18U National: Boston Junior Bruins
The Boston Junior Bruins were the only 18U National team to skate through the Round Robin (March 4-6) completely undefeated at 3-0.
They picked up victories against the P.A.L. Jr. Islanders (4-0), the Rockets Hockey Club (3-1) and CP Dynamo (3-1) to earn the top spot in the four-team semifinal round late Saturday night.
That evening, they faced the Skipacks Hockey Club (a 2020 finalist) and skated away with a 7-2 win - one that came with a major cost to the Junior Bruins, however. The team exceeded the 15-penalty limit for a game set by USA Hockey, meaning they’d have to move forward to the finals without Head Coach Blake Bellefeuille.
The team was able to overcome this potential obstacle with flying colors, as they posted a 4-0 win against the Philadelphia Hockey Club (3-1 to that point) for the championship. Matt Bogdanski made 13 saves, and goals came from Jack Felicio, Michael Stevens, Mike Santonelli and Bob Lockwood, who also had two assists to lead his team in points.
18U American: Maine Moose
With seven players who had won the 2019 Tier-2 16U National Championship for the Moose, the 2020-21 18U Moose prospered despite facing some intense challenges en route to glory.
With no semifinal in this eight-team tournament, each finalist had to win their pool to move forward. They started with wins against Connecticut Jr. Rangers (3-1) and the Philadelphia Hockey Club 18U Elite team (5-0) before their toughest challenge.
On Saturday night, they were up against the other 2-0 team in their pool, the Northern Cyclones 18U Premier team. The Moose faced a 3-2 deficit going into the third period, before goals by Cam Knowles and the GWG by Brendan Manning sent them onward to Sunday’s final.
There, they met the Palmyra Black Knights, who’d gone 3-0 against the Islanders Hockey Club (5-1), Northern Cyclones 18U Elite (6-2) and South Shore Kings (2-1).
Owen Arend scored a pair of goals, and Gabe Poirier and Cam Rizzo each scored one apiece as they held off a comeback attempt by Palmyra to win 4-3. Josh Girard had 25 saves on 28 shots.
16U National: Islanders Hockey Club
After round robin wins against Palmyra (4-0) and the Connecticut Jr. Rangers (6-3), the Islanders needed just a tie against the Boston Junior Bruins on Saturday to advance.
The Islanders - coached by Islanders HC NCDC Head Coach Tim Kyrkostas - set the tone early with a first period goal by Jake Murphy, but the Junior Bruins’ goal 17 seconds into the third said that Coach Topher Bevis’ team had every intention of getting the W and advancing. The Islanders defense and goaltender Alex Lafreniere shut the Junior Bruin offense down the rest of the way, but also couldn’t get any more past Junior Bruins goalie Aidan Bickford (24 saves). Nonetheless, they got the point needed to advance, going up against the CP Dynamo.
The Dynamo had gone 2-0-1 in their round robin to make it to the finals and Head Coach Dennis Kravchenko was intent on his team being crowned with its first USPHL Midget title.
That tight Islanders defense, plus Lafreniere, however stymied those plans. The Dynamo had held off the Islanders for two periods, and most of three themselves, but Jackson Kyrkostas scored a shorthanded goal at 12:16. The Islanders sealed their second title in three years with an empty-netter with 13 seconds remaining by Aaron Schwartz. Lafreniere stopped all 15 shots he faced.
16U American: Springfield Pics
Yes, the Pics repeated as 16U American Champs, but this was actually an entirely new team put together by Coaches (and brothers) John and Anthony Sarno. That certainly speaks to the organization’s dedication to putting forth a first-class Midget program every year.
The Pics came right out and asserted themselves in their first three round robin games, with wins over the P.A.L. Jr. Islanders Premier (7-2), Philadelphia Hockey Club Elite (6-1) and Potomac Patriots (6-0). Their final game of the round robin was a 2-2 tie with Skipjacks Hockey Club, which set them as the No. 2 seed in the semifinals on Sunday morning - against the same Skipjacks.
Two goals by Ryan Shaw were a huge help in a tight game that saw the Skipjacks’ Trevor Risser score a late goal, but there wasn’t enough time for a full comeback.
In the final, against the 4-0 Northern Cyclones Premier team, the Pics got back to the busy offense of their first three games in a 6-1 win. Goals came from Ryan Shaw (2-2-4 line), Matthew Hanscom (two goals) and each of Brigham Dubey and Nick DiSanti. John Hanscom stopped 24 of 25 shots for the win.
15U: Jersey Hitmen
Teams needed to win their pool to get into the final and the Hitmen were all business through their first three games.
The opener was certainly a challenge, as the Philadelphia Hockey Club - on the back of a 39-save effort by Ian Schmitt - got the tie. The Hitmen came out of that knowing they’d have to win the rest of the way. They did just that against the Springfield Pics (9-0) and the Utica Jr. Comets, who gave them a tough go of it in a 2-1 match. Massimo Monteleone scored to break what would have been a devastating tie.
On Championship Sunday, the Hitmen took to the ice against the P.A.L. Jr. Islanders, who’d gone 3-0 in tight games to reach the final.
Joshua Shpungin scored two goals to lead the way, while Jake Rosolanko, Braedan Guiterman and Monteleone also scored for the title. Kyle Ozgun made 23 saves on 24 shots.
The United States Premier Hockey League is proud to announce the dates and site for its 2021 USPHL Midget Championships. Five Champions will be crowned at the York Ice Arena in York, Pa., with additional round robin games being played at Twin Ponds East in Harrisburg, Pa., between March 4-7, 2021.
There will be separate tournaments and championships for each of the USPHL 18U National Division, USPHL 18U American Division, USPHL 16U National Division, USPHL 16U American Division and the USPHL 15U Division.
All of the playoffs will run concurrently at York - home of the Skipjacks Academy - and Twin Ponds, with round robin running March 4-6. Semifinals will take place in each division on the evening of March 6.
All five championship games will be played at York Ice Arena on the morning and early afternoon of March 7. Round robin schedules are still being finalized, and will soon be posted on the division pages for each of USPHL 18U, USPHL 16U and USPHL 15U at USPHL.com.
Please note that there will be no video broadcast of these games. To follow along with the event, please go online to USPHL.com. Spectators will be allowed at both venues, with two per player allowed, and spectators are required to leave the building immediately after the conclusion of their participants’ game.
The United States Premier Hockey League, and its tuition-free National Collegiate Development Conference, are proud to announce their 2021 USPHL NCDC Combines, set to take place in Detroit, Mich. (April 23-24) and Chicago, Ill. (May 14-15).
These Combines will feature guaranteed scouting opportunities by coaches from the USPHL’s Tier-2 tuition free National Collegiate Development Conference, along with additional scouting opportunities with USPHL Premier and Elite teams. No league at the Tier-2 and Tier 3 level sends more players to college than the USPHL.
Players born between Jan. 1, 2001, and Dec. 31, 2005, will be eligible. Limited Openings are available for all positions!
Non-refundable* registration is $250 for each Combine. The USPHL is dedicated to providing a great value to prospective players to show their skills in front of NCDC coaches and begin new relationships.
Players will be guaranteed a minimum of three scrimmage games, and there will be goaltender-specific training sessions at each event. There will also be an informational seminar about the United States Premier Hockey League and its unparalleled USPHL Development Model.
The USPHL NCDC Detroit Combine (April 23-24) will be held at a rink in the suburban Detroit area, which will be announced in the coming weeks.
Register for the 2021 USPHL NCDC Detroit Combine:
The USPHL NCDC Chicago Combine (May 14-15) will be held at the Fifth Third Arena at 1801 West Jackson Blvd., in Chicago, Ill. Fifth Third Arena is the practice facility for the Chicago Blackhawks. Located in downtown Chicago, it is just over 30 minutes drive from O’Hare International Airport, and under 30 minutes from Chicago Midway International Airport.
Register for the 2021 USPHL NCDC Chicago Combine:
Invitations to NCDC and other USPHL team tryout camps for the 2021-22 season will be offered to select players from each Combine.
The cost for each two-day combine is $250, with a three-game guarantee as well as off-ice activities, and player evaluations. Also included: accredited on-ice officials, and medical staff on site.
There will also be a Q&A/information seminar during each combine, where players and their parents, if in attendance, can ask questions directly of NCDC coaches and USPHL League officials.
The USPHL and its tuition-free division, the NCDC, are providing an unparalleled, comprehensive on-and off-ice recruiting opportunity for players from throughout the United States. Sign up today, as registration will be limited.
About the NCDC
The NCDC is the only tuition-free junior hockey league that is fully located in the Northeastern United States, limiting travel to New York, New Jersey and the New England states. This allows players to spend more time on development, both on-and off-ice, than traveling on a bus.
With the unmatched USPHL Showcase Series, NCDC players have several opportunities each season to play in front of several scouts at well-attended multi-day, multi-tiered events. Even in the most uncertain of times, the NCDC continued to play a full season thanks to the USPHL’s unique and proactive creation of the Hub City Tampa event.
There were more than 700 former players from the USPHL’s top division skating with NCAA hockey teams during the 2019-20 season, the last full NCAA campaign. This included individual season-ending award-winners from multiple NCAA Division 1 conferences.
More than 150 players committed to college hockey out of the 2019-20 NCDC season alone, and there are currently over 50 Division I-committed players skating in the NCDC.
The NHL has also taken notice as the League set a record with 13 players on the NHL Central Scouting List - 12 of those players competing in the NCDC - which was more than any North American Jr. A hockey league outside of the USHL. Alumni of USPHL organizations currently skating in the NHL include players such as Jack Eichel, Charlie Coyle, John Marino, Jimmy Vesey, and Stanley Cup Champions Zach Sanford, Trevor Van Riemsdyk and Brian Dumoulin.
About The USPHL
The United States Premier Hockey League of 2020-2021 is the nation’s largest amateur ice hockey league and the only league to span the continental United States and parts of Canada.
The USPHL fields approximately 550 teams representing over 100 organizations comprised of 11,000 players spanning the ages of 6 through 20. Overall, across all its divisions, the USPHL had more than 1,200 alumni playing college hockey in 2019-20 and more than 250 playing pro hockey, including in the NHL.
* = Refunds will be available for those who medically cannot attend the Combines, with a doctor’s note.
THE USPHL RESERVES THE RIGHT TO CHANGE DATES AND LOCATIONS TO COMPLY WITH COVID-19 RESTRICTIONS, AS THEY ARE CONTINUALLY CHANGING.
The United States Premier Hockey League is excited to announce that eight of its League alumni have been named as Hobey Baker Award nominees for the 2020-21 season. The Hobey Baker Award, currently celebrating its 41st year, is given each year to the top player in NCAA Division I Hockey. It is traditionally awarded on the day between the semifinals and final championship game of the NCAA Frozen Four Tournament.
Past winners of the Hobey Baker Award from USPHL Member organizations include back-to-back winners Jack Eichel (Boston Junior Bruins alum) and Jimmy Vesey (South Shore Kings), who won the award in 2015 and 2016, respectively. Additionally, former South Shore King - then Walpole Stars - Matt Gilroy won the award in 2009.
USPHL Alumni Nominated for 2021 Hobey Baker Award
(listed in alphabetical order)
David Farrance, D, Boston University
Syracuse Jr. Stars (now Utica Jr. Comets) 16U, 2013-15
Farrance scored 86 points in 60 regular season and playoff games for the former Stars in the USPHL 16U Division. He was voted Defenseman Of The Year in that division in both 2014 and 2015. He was also the 16U MVP in 2014-15.
He currently has 86 points in 108 career games for the Terriers, including a 4-10-14 line in just six games this season. Last year, he was a First Team All-American, First Team Hockey East and a Hobey Baker Award Finalist and he is currently an Alternate Captain for BU.
He was drafted in 2017, in the third round (92nd overall) by the Nashville Predators.
Jordan Harris, D, Northeastern University
Islanders Hockey Club 16U, 2014-15
Harris played 10 games in 2014-15 for the Islanders in 2015, scoring one assist. He also played in three additional playoff games, not registering a point. An Alternate Captain for the Huskies, he currently has a career line of 9-35-44 for Northeastern in 83 games, including 11 points in 10 games. He was drafted in 2018, in the third round (71st overall), by the Montreal Canadiens.
Alex Jefferies, LW, Merrimack College
Islanders Hockey Club 16U, 2016-18
A couple years after Harris moved on, Jefferies joined the Islanders’ 16U squad and led the USPHL 16U Division in goals with 33, part of a 33-20-53 line in just 25 games in 2017-18. All told, in 57 regular season and playoff games with the Islanders, he had 93 total points.
Currently a freshman at Merrimack, he scored a 4-6-11 line in his first 10 games. Jefferies was recently selected in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, a fourth round (121st overall) selection by the New York Islanders.
Alex Limoges, C, Penn State University
South Kent Selects Academy USPHL 16U/18U, 2013-15
The Captain of the Nittany Lions was one of the earliest USPHL 16U stars, playing a huge role for the Selects in the USPHL’s first season of 2013-14. That year, he scored a total of 56 points in 30 regular season and playoff games, helping Selects win the title. Moving to the 18U Selects in 2014-15, he was named Best Forward in the league after leading the league with 59 points in 28 regular season games. He added six points in four playoff games that year.
For Penn State, Limoges crossed the 100-point mark as a junior, and currently has 16 points in 18 games this year for 119 total points in 125 NCAA games. He was a Big Ten All-Tournament Selection in 2019, when he led the NCAA with 50 points. He was a Big Ten Honorable Mention All-Star last year as he helped Penn State capture the Regular Season title. After graduation, Limoges will be a professional free agent.
Keith Petruzzelli, G, Quinnipiac University
Boston Junior Bruins 16U, 2013-14
South Kent Selects Academy USPHL 18U, 2015-16
Petruzzelli was a powerful goaltender for the Junior Bruins’ first-ever USPHL 16U entry in 2013-14, posting a .924 save percentage and 1.31 goals against average in 11 games. Two years later, he made his return to the league with the Selects, earning Top Goaltender and MVP Awards for his .936 and 1.13 marks in 22 games. He also helped the Selects win that year’s USPHL 18U title.
Now a senior with Quinnipiac, he is building on an outstanding junior season with the Bobcats (21-10-2, 2.01, .920) as he has already won 10 games for a 10-5-3 record. His goals against is a shining 1.79 and his save percentage of .929 is top 10 in NCAA hockey. He was drafted in 2017, in the third round (88th overall) by the Detroit Red Wings.
Shane Pinto, C, University of North Dakota
South Kent Selects Academy USPHL 16U/18U, 2016-18
Just after the departure of Petruzzelli, the Selects got another star on their hands when Pinto joined the 16U squad. Although he didn’t play many games (13 total regular season games over two years), he was a better than point-per-game player with 14 points. He was even better in the playoffs both years, scoring seven points in four games at each level to win back-to-back championships.
Currently a sophomore for UND, Pinto has an 11-12-23 line in 18 games, coming off his Rookie Of The Year season in the NCHC last year. During the holiday break, he was named a Top Three player for Team USA at the 2020 World Junior Championships, posting a 4-3-7 line in five games. He was drafted in 2019, in the second round (32nd overall), by the Ottawa Senators.
Jacob Schmidt-Svejstrup, RW, University of Maine
South Kent Selects Academy, USPHL 16U, 2013-15
Boston Junior Bruins, USPHL Premier, 2015-16
A former teammate of Limoges, the Dane scored 36 points in 28 games to help Selects to the first USPHL 16U title. Still young, he remained with the Selects 16U in 2014-15, leading the league in goals (40) and finishing his USPHL 16U career with 95 points in 51 games, good for fourth all-time at that level.
He then joined the Junior Bruins’ top junior team, scoring 30 points in 35 games alongside future UMaine teammate Tim Doherty.
Currently a junior with the Black Bears, he has nine points in 10 games, and he has 41 points in 76 career NCAA games.
Alex Steeves, F, University of Notre Dame
New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs 16U, 2014-15
Steeves was the leading scorer for the Monarchs in 2014-15, posting 38 points in 28 games, and another five in four playoff contests.
In 2018, Steeves matriculated to the Fighting Irish, getting into 39 of their 40 games as a freshman. The next year, Steeves scored 28 points in 36 games and led the Fighting Irish to the Big Ten Championship. Currently, Steeves has a 9-6-15 line in 18 games as a junior.
Additional Organizational Alumni
Four other players who have spent time with USPHL Member Organizations, but outside of the USPHL, were also named as Hobey Baker Award Nominees.
Eduards Tralmaks, University of Maine
Spencer Knight, Boston College
Connecticut (Mid-Fairfield) Jr. Rangers
Zach Solow, Northeastern University
Matthew Boldy, Boston College
South Shore Kings
The United States Premier Hockey League was honored to have its six-week Hub City Tampa event lauded by ESPN's John Buccigross, the leading hockey broadcaster and promoter for the "Worldwide Leader In Sports."
To his audience of more than 395,000 followers, Buccigross tweeted the following:
As junior leagues throughout North America shut down or cancelled seasons the @USPHL got creative and created a Hub event in Tampa to keep the kids playing while putting safety first for players, coaches & staff. 40+ teams from all over the US headed to Tampa including... pic.twitter.com/DtAzfkEGBI— Bucci Mane (@Buccigross) January 25, 2021
..the Women’s PWHPA All-Stars.— Bucci Mane (@Buccigross) January 25, 2021
*850+ players competing over the six week Hub event
*300+ league games played
*50+ D1 committed players at the Hub
*13 players on NHL Central Scouting Players to Watch List.All-Star Games, and Lightning’s Dave Mishkin/Phil Esposito broadcasting game pic.twitter.com/XeS5LIgreG
All games broadcast on @myhockeytv. Teams living in condominium suites at the Saddlebrook Resort. Masks & social distancing when indoors except for when in suite, locker room or on ice.— Bucci Mane (@Buccigross) January 25, 2021
Off ice recreation at Saddlebrook: golf, tennis, fishing, swimming Ect. pic.twitter.com/a9e8aA0PVh
Buccigross began working for ESPN in 1996, making 2021 his 25th anniversary at the network. He has proven to be the biggest supporter of the sport of hockey at ESPN, formerly hosting the network's NHL 2Night program. In 2010, he began the "#bucciovertimechallenge" on Twitter, offering the public to win merchandise with that hashtag if they are the first to correctly predict the overtime game-winning goal-scorer in an NHL game, and he's also expanded that promotion to other leagues, including the NCAA.
He became NCAA college hockey's largest proponent on ESPN, and coined the phonetic catch-phrase "cawlidge hawkey."
The USPHL thanks John Buccigross for his support of the Hub City Tampa event, and will continue to provide unprecedented access to hockey games for its players during the COVID-19 pandemic in a specially-designed controlled community environment where the health and safety of its players and staff is the top priority.
The United States Premier Hockey League is excited to announce that 12 players who have skated in the Tier-2 National Collegiate Development Conference (NCDC) have been listed as “Players To Watch” by NHL Central Scouting in their most recent list, issued January 22.
The NCDC is second in North American Jr. A hockey only to the Tier-1 United States Hockey League in players listed on the Watch List, and is ahead of all other Tier-2 junior leagues in the United States and Canada.
The Jan. 22 list includes four new players who were not on the October Players To Watch List, and tthree of them skated in the NCDC NHL Prospects Game on Monday, Jan. 18. These players are Colin Graf (Boston Junior Bruins), Sean Melso (Jersey Hitmen) and Kaleb Nelson and Johnny Ulicny (Islanders Hockey Club).
All of the players listed below, except for Nelson and Norcross and 18U player Remick, played in the NCDC NHL Prospects Game, personally scouted by NHL Central Scouting’s Dave Gregory. Players have been drawn to the NCDC due to the USPHL’s forward and proactive thinking that has seen the league actively playing since September, including its Hub City Tampa initiative that has kept the season going within a controlled community concept focused around health and safety.
All of the players listed below were issued “C” rankings, which predict Draft selections between the fourth and seventh round. The NHL Entry Draft will be held July 23-24, 2021, at a location to be determined.
Oliver Flynn, LW, Boston Junior Bruins
Listed by Central Scouting as playing with Loomis-Chaffee School, Flynn has been with the Junior Bruins since November as Loomis-Chaffee canceled its 2020-21 season, and just after he was listed in October. He has posted a 1-9-10 line in 18 games, and he is committed to the University of Connecticut.
Colin Graf, C, Boston Junior Bruins
Newly listed, Graf has been with the Junior Bruins for essentially his entire career going back to youth hockey. He has skated in 171 USPHL Midget and NCDC games in his career since 2016, and he has 14 goals, 20 assists and 34 points in 28 games in this, his second NCDC season. Graf is committed to Union College. Graf scored two goals and one assist in the NCDC NHL Prospects Game.
Shane LaChance, LW, Boston Junior Bruins
Another November addition for the Junior Bruins, LaChance returned to the Players To Watch List. The Boston University commit (and grandson of BU coaching legend Jack Parker) has posted a 6-5-11 line in 21 games. LaChance scored a goal in the NHL Prospects Game.
Sam Lipkin, C, Rockets Hockey Club
Lipkin - listed with Chicago (USHL) - joined the Rockets as they began their run at Hub City Tampa, scoring a 2-1-3 line in his first NCDC game on Jan. 7. The Quinnipiac University recruit has four goals and nine assists for 13 points in 10 games.
Sean Melso, D, Jersey Hitmen
Melso was an immediate hit for the Hitmen, and has been a regular two-way contributor, scoring 3-14-17 in 27 games this year, as well as a goal in the NCDC NHL Prospects Game. He is a +11 for the season.
Logan Morrell, RW, Islanders Hockey Club
Morrell, another Quinnipiac commit, joined the Islanders at the start of the game and has played in eight games this season, registering seven assists through that time.
Kaleb Nelson, RW, Islanders Hockey Club
Nelson, a Providence College commit, played six games for the Islanders during the month of November and just into December, registering one goal and one assist.
Billy Norcross, C, Islanders Hockey Club
Norcross played 19 games for the Islanders before suffering an injury in the Hub. In 19 contests, he posted two goals and six assists for eight points as he prepares for his future with Boston College.
Evan Orloff, D, Rockets Hockey Club
Another homegrown product for his team, Orloff played a full season last year in the highly-ranked Rockets 16U program, before joining the NCDC program. The uncommitted blueliner is a +14 with two assists in 27 games this year.
Jack Pascucci, D, Boston Junior Bruins
Joining in mid-November, Pascucci became an immediate boon to the Junior Bruins D corps, helping them remain steady in their hunt for first place in the North Division. He posted a 1-9-10 line through 18 games. He is a UConn commit.
Johan Rosenquist, C, Islanders Hockey Club
The fourth-year Islander and second-year NCDC veteran continues to impress NHL scouts, as he remained on the list from October. The uncommitted center has posted a 6-11-17 line in 29 contests. He has climbed the USPHL Development Model from 16U to Premier to NCDC.
Johnny Ulicny, LW, Islanders Hockey Club
A new addition to the Players To Watch list, Ulicny earned his spot in the NCDC NHL Prospects Game with a powerful two-way game that has seen him score nine points in 19 games with the Islanders. Like Rosenquist, he will make a yet to be determined NCAA program very happy.
Ryan Remick, LW, Rockets Hockey Club 18U
Remick has been on the 18U Rockets roster this season, and is a recruit of the University of Maine.
Jacob Guevin (Northwood School)
Guevin currently plays for Muskegon of the USHL. He had a 5-11-16 line through 12 games with the Northwood School last season, along with one goal in three USPHL 18U playoff games. Guevin is committed to the University of Nebraska-Omaha.
Gleb Veremyev (Rockets Hockey Club)
The former Rocket, who racked up the points in the USPHL 15U and 16U levels (76 points in 46 contests), currently plays for Lincoln in the USHL. He is committed to Penn State University.
Nate Benoit (Northern Cyclones)
Benoit played two seasons of USPHL Midget Hockey (15U and 16U) for the Northern Cyclones. He racked up more than 50 regular season and playoff points for these teams, and also saw a three-game NCDC call-up in 2018-19. He currently plays for Mount St. Charles Academy.
Ruben Rafkin (South Kent Selects Academy)
Rafkin helped Selects Academy win both the 2017 and 2018 USPHL 16U championships. He currently plays for TPS in the Liiga in Europe, the top pro league for Finland. He earned a bronze medal for Finland at the recent World Junior Championships.
Cam MacDonald (Connecticut Jr. Rangers)
The former Rangers Futures Draft Pick scored a goal in his first game in the NCDC in 2018-19. This season, he is with the Saint John Sea Dogs in the QMJHL.
Matt Beniers (South Shore Kings/Boston Junior Bruins)
Rated as an “A” player for the first round, Beniers played his youth hockey for both the Kings and Junior Bruins. He is currently with the University of Michigan and helped Team USA win the recent World Junior Championships.
Tim Lovell (Boston Advantage)
The Boston College recruit played his Midget hockey for the Boston Advantage.
Cooper Flinton (Northern Cyclones)
Flinton, who is at St. Paul’s School, has played split-season Midget hockey for the Northern Cyclones’ Prep team for the last three seasons.
Peter Reynolds (Islanders Hockey Club)
Reynolds played youth hockey for the Islanders Hockey Club.
The United States Premier Hockey League wishes the best of luck to all six of its alumni playing in the IIHF World Junior Championships’ top-level tournament. The WJC got underway on Christmas Day and will wrap up with the Gold Medal Game on Jan. 5. Defending Gold Medalist Canada is the host country, with all games taking place in Edmonton and Red Deer, Alberta.
The USPHL is excited for all of its alumni, hailing from the National Collegiate Development Conference, the USPHL 18U and USPHL 16U Divisions.
Sam Colangelo (Boston Junior Bruins)
Colangelo (‘01/Stoneham, Mass.) just turned 19 on Dec. 26. The former Boston Junior Bruin played 31 combined regular season and playoff games in 2015-16 with the USPHL 16U Junior Bruins. Three seasons later, he played NCDC games with the Junior Bruins as well as games with their split-season Midget program known as the Little Bruins. Colangelo is on the roster for Northeastern University, but has not yet played his first NCAA game.
The 2021 World Junior Championship tournament marks Colangelo’s debut with Team USA.
Luis Lindner (Boston Junior Bruins)
Lindner, a 2001-born native of Spittel an der Drau, Austria, joined the Junior Bruins in 2019-20 at the NCDC level for what was so far his only North American season. Lindner was selected to the 2020 USPHL All-Star Game, immediately recognized after joining the Junior Bruins in the middle of the fall of their first season after winning the 2019 Dineen Cup. Lindner scored 42 points in 39 NCDC games last season. Lindner helped Austria capture the WJC Division 1A Gold Medal last year, earning promotion to the top 10 championship group for this winter. Lindner was also twice a World Under-18 Division 1 Group B Silver Medalist with Austria in 2018 and 2019.
Senna Peeters (South Kent Selects Academy)
Peeters (‘02/Deurne, Belgium) joined South Kent Selects Academy for the 2018-19 season, which included their involvement in the USPHL 16U and 18U playoffs that year. Peters played in all four USPHL playoff games with the 16U South Kent squad, posting a goal and two assists for three points in four games. Peeters was with Lindner on the Gold Medal-winning Team Austria at last year’s World Junior Championships Division 1A tournament. Prior to the WJC, he was playing in Sweden’s Top Under-20 League with Rogle BK.
Ruben Rafkin (South Kent Selects Academy)
Rafkin (‘02/Turku, Finland) helped SKSA win back-to-back USPHL 16U Championships in 2017 and 2018. Overall, in 19 combined USPHL regular season and playoff games, Rafkin scored 11 points. He has represented Finland at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge (in 2018-19) and was with Finland’s U18 team in 2020. The WJC marks his debut in an IIHF championship tournament for Finland. During the regular season, he plays for Turku in Finland’s top pro league, the Liiga.
Artur Turansky (South Kent Selects Academy)
Turansky (‘01/Bratislava, Slovakia) joined Rafkin on the 2018 USPHL 16U championship team out of South Kent School. He was also a key member of the SKSA team that won the USPHL 18U title in 2019. Turansky scored 17 points in 10 combined regular season and playoff games in 2018-19, and he had three points in six games with the USPHL 16U team one year earlier. In 2019, Turansky was also a member of Team Slovakia at the World Under-18 Championships, marking this year’s WJC his second time representing his country.
Ray Fust (Northwood School)
Fust (‘01/Reverolle, Switzerland) was a member of the Northwood School’s entry in the USPHL 18U Division in 2019-20, where he posted 12 goals and 18 points in 12 regular season games. He also added four points in three USPHL 18U playoff games last February. Committed to the University of Nebraska-Omaha for 2021-22, Fust is in his fifth appearance representing his home country and first IIHF championship tournament appearance.
Four former South Shore Kings youth players on Team USA
The South Shore Kings, a founding member of the USPHL, are also represented with four former youth hockey players on Team USA - this includes Sam Colangelo, Brett Berard, Matty Beniers and Matthew Boldy. Best of luck to all of these four as they chase down a Gold Medal for the United States!
Six former Junior Bruins Youth tournament players on Team USA
Six alumni of the Boston Junior Bruins' Brick youth tournament teams are on team USA - Sam Colangelo, Brett Berard, Matty Beniers, Matthew Body, Patrick Moynihan and Henry Thrun.
Just over a week ago, the United States Premier Hockey League announced its revolutionary Hub City Tampa plans. All NCDC teams, plus select USPHL Premier and USPHL Elite teams, will play games in the Tampa area while living all in one location, Saddlebrook Resort in Wesley Chapel, Fla. Health and safety is the top priority as players will be restricted to traveling only between the resort and the ice rinks they are playing at, greatly reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission, while also following federal, state and local guidelines as well as the USPHL’s Health Protocols.
The initiative is exciting to coaches in the NCAA Division I ranks, who have pledged they will be watching closely to see the next wave of NCAA D-I talent playing in the NCDC. Hear directly from three Division I coaches, including the all-time leader in Division I wins, Boston College’s Jerry York.
Jerry York, Boston College: "The NCDC has made a marked improvement over the last couple of years. They have attracted a strong group of talented players and the coaches do an excellent job with player development. My staff and I will continue to follow the teams when they play in Tampa and throughout the remainder of the season.”
Scott Borek, Merrimack College: "I am impressed and excited for the NCDC and the USPHL as they work towards the ‘Hub City’ in Tampa. I certainly can appreciate the effort and creativity of the league’s coaches and leadership as they try to bring hockey to the kids on their teams."
Brett Riley, Long Island University: “I have been very impressed by the pace of the NCDC games this season. The coaches have done a fantastic job strengthening rosters and recruiting top prospects to play during these unprecedented times. The talent of the league is even deeper and the games have been fast and competitive. Our staff looks forward to closely following the games down in Tampa.”
Learn all about the USPHL Hub City Tampa at usphl.com/hubcitytampa!