The United States Premier Hockey League is back for its second year of the tuition-free National Collegiate Development Conference, which saw a great first year with more than 120 college commitments from what was then an 11-team league.
The New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs join the NCDC team for this season, and all 12 teams are chomping at the bit to make Year 2 even bigger and better than last year’s successful inaugural season.
New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs
2017-18: Premier Division
Outlook: The Monarchs are new to the NCDC this season, but will actually complete their 26th season as an organization in 2018-19. The Monarchs have several NHL alumni, including Stanley Cup champions Brian Dumoulin and Trevor vanRiemsdyk, just as the tip of the iceberg.
The Monarchs’ top team operated at the USPHL Premier level last year, but even as a first-year NCDC team, general manager/head coach Ryan Frew is optimistic.
“We have a nice balance with some high-end young prospects and seasoned veterans,” said Frew. “We’ll have a quick, transition team that plays 200 feet with a lot of speed.
“I’m excited. I’ve been with this organization for a long, long time and have had great success. As a program we’ve done some incredible things over the years but this venture is one that makes me work, grind, and feel like a rookie again,” added Frew. “I want to deliver my players the absolute best hockey experience they have ever had, and I will. This chance fuels me every day. I’ve been waiting for an opportunity like this and we won’t disappoint. We are more than ready and we will be prepared.”
Top newcomers: University of New Hampshire recruit Aidan Curran (’01 forward) is at the head of a strong, talented group, joining the NCDC team from the 16U Monarchs. Robbie Ferreira (’99 forward) and Trent DeNuccio (’99 forward) are exciting prospects from Vermont Academy and the Loomis Chaffee School, respectively. “We also feel very confident about our group of imports,” added Frew.