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USPHL Premier Players Of The Month: West Region

By USPHL Staff, 11/04/21, 9:15PM EDT

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Mountain Division

Forward

Benjamin St-Onge, Pueblo Bulls

The all-time leader in scoring for Pueblo Bulls (even coming into this season) just keeps clicking along at a dizzying pace, scoring goals and points as if he simply wills them to happen. He has 16 goals in 16 games so far this year, and has added 19 helpers for a total of 35 points. His 107 points since the start of last season - when Pueblo entered the USPHL - is the third-most in the Premier league behind Cincinnati’s Drake Barnish (109) and Fresno’s Stepan Skvirskii (111). 

 

Nick Urtis, Utah Outliers

The Outliers have been leaving everyone in the dust, pushing ever forward on a nine-game points streak (8-0-1) and with a 10-1-1-0 record. One major driver of this success has been the second-year Premier veteran Urtis (‘02/Riverside, Ill.), who has posted nine goals and three assists for 12 points in the seven games he played this season so far. He continues to build on a fine USPHL career in which he scored 34 points in 28 games for Provo last year. 

 

Brayden Fryfogle, Northern Colorado Eagles

The ‘03 out of Wyoming, Ont., has already blown past his 2020-21 totals of 11 points in 41 games last year. That’s ancient history and he now holds eight goals and eight assists for 16 points in eight contests. From Sept. 25 to Oct. 30, Fryfogle enjoyed a run of 6-8-14 in six games, including five straight multi-point efforts.

 

Defense

Xavier Fortin, Northern Colorado Eagles

Fortin takes care of business in so many ways, whether it’s chipping in on the offense for the Eagles or keeping up his responsibilities in the Eagles’ own end. The 2002-born Quebec native has put up three goals and seven assists for 10 points, which leads all Mountain Division defensemen. In addition, he leads the Eagles in plus-minus with a +8 and in blocked shots with 11. 

 

Luke Faas, Ogden Mustangs

A first-year junior, this 2003-born native of Eagle, Idaho, has been a steady, heads-up presence on Ogden’s blue line all season long. Along with contributing a goal and seven assists for eight points in 12 games, he has also led the Mustang defense with a +10 ranking. 

 

Goaltender

Garrett Alderman, Utah Outliers

Alderman (‘02/Raleigh, N.C.) came to Utah after a highly accomplished Ohio high school hockey career with Upper Arlington H.S. He has yet to suffer a loss in the USPHL Premier, starting his junior career 5-0 with a very impressive .937 save percentage that is good for 10th in the entire Premier, and his 1.57 goals against average ranks fifth. He is also one of just eight goaltenders league-wide with at least two shutouts (eight), and he has those against Provo (15 saves on Sept. 24) and Northern Colorado (37 saves on Oct. 31). 

 

Pacific Division 

Forwards

Jett Arminen, Lake Tahoe Lakers

Arminen (‘01/San Diego, Calif.) certainly enjoyed his first USPHL Premier season in 2020-21, putting together a 41-point season and getting a chance to play in the National Championships with Fresno. This year, he jumped to the brand new Lake Tahoe Lakers and has already pushed past those already lofty totals of last year, posting 22 goals and 23 assists for 45 points - all in just 11 games. He has never missed scoring in a game, nor has he scored just one point in a game - they’ve all been multi-point efforts, culminating in a five-goal, three-assist effort on Oct. 15. 

 

Ari Rossi, Lake Tahoe Lakers

The Lakers also came upon a great talent when the 2002-born Santa Rosa, Calif., native was seen playing for Tahoe Prep Academy last season. Joining Arminen on Lake Tahoe’s top line, he has been dishing out his fair share of assists - a league-leading 24 helpers to be exact - as well as nine goals for 33 points in just 12 games this season. After going pointless in his very first game, he hasn’t looked back and brings an active 11-game point streak into November, including 10 points in the final three games of October against Fresno. Rossi also leads the Lakers in hits with 10. 

 

Heath Mensch, Las Vegas Thunderbirds

Recently, with Mensch’s second of four assists on Oct. 28, he passed former teammate Nate Mohr as the T-Birds’ all-time leading scorer, with 74 points now in just 50 games. The 2003-born native of Las Vegas is second only to Rossi in assists, as he has sent out 23 helpers so far this year, in addition to 15 goals in 14 games to give him a total of 38 points, good for third overall in the league. His current eight-game scoring streak began with four assists on Oct. 9, and it has reached eight games and seen him produce 32 points in that span of time. 

 

Defense

Luke Stevens, Lake Tahoe Lakers

The 2002-born Denver, Colo., native is the leading scorer among defensemen in the USPHL Premier, with a lead of four points over the Metro Jets’ Braydin Lewis. Currently, Stevens has 15 goals and 14 assists for 29 points in 12 games played. He is tied with fellow Lakers blueliner Bryden Hewko with a plus-8 to lead the Lakers’ defensemen, and he has blocked nine shots this year. 

 

Ty Woodard, Fresno Monsters

The 2003-born Woodard (of Squamish, B.C.) returned to the Monsters after a year away for what is now his first USPHL season. The plan has worked like a charm, as he has racked up a 2-13-15 line in 14 games. More than half of his 13 assists have come on special teams (six power play and one shorthanded), and he is also his team’s leader in hits (19). 

 

Goaltender

Justin Lakin, San Diego Sabers

The Sabers as a team may have struggled so far this year, but Lakin has been extremely sound as the last line of defense. He has a .936 save percentage, which places him in the top 15 out of more than 120 goaltenders league-wide, and his personal 2.96 goals against average is impressive on a team with an overall team GAA of 4.50. He made a season-high 58 saves in a loss to the Las Vegas Thunderbirds. In just four games, he has faced a total of 187 shots and given up just 12 of these, including making 34 of 35 stops in a 2-1 win over Long Beach on Oct. 2. 

 

Top Performers Of The Week

Mountain Division

Forward - Cade Herrera, Ogden Mustangs 

Defense - Connor Williams, Pueblo Bulls 

Goalie - Marco Felicetti, Utah Outliers 

 

Pacific Division 

Forward - Heath Mensch, Las Vegas Thunderbirds

Defense - Aiden McPhee, Fresno Monsters

Goalie - Anthony Bonaldi, Las Vegas Thunderbirds