The saying "better late than never" fits this scenario perfectly. Today, the Philadelphia Flyers Junior Hockey team is proud to announce that its co-captain Ryan Badger has committed to play for UMass-Amherst hockey team next season.
Badger, who finished the season as the team's second-highest scorer, served as a leader on and off the ice for this year's Flyers squad. His success helped spur the Flyers to their best season in the organization's short history, ending the year as runners-up in the United States Premier Hockey League.
Ryan Badger finished the 2014-2015 campaign as the Flyers leading assist getter with 41. His unselfish play and incredible ability to create chances for his teammates was a major factor in the Flyers potent scoring attack. In addition to his 41 assists, Badger added an outstanding 23 goals. His 64 points were good enough to land him in the league's top ten point-getters this season.
Badger's impeccable regular season was only rivaled by his primetime playoff performance. All postseason Badger served as the team's go-to-guy, leading the team in playoff points with 9 in just six games.
His biggest point of the season came late in the night, following 90-plus minutes of hockey between your Flyers and the visiting Islanders Hockey Club in the USPHL Semifinals. Ryan Badger who has made a USPHL career off always being in the right place at the right time, placed himself perfectly yet again in the second overtime of Game 1 of the team's Semifinals series. Forward Ron Greco found Badger open for a game-winning power play goal, which is arguably the greatest moment in Philadelphia Flyers Junior Hockey history.
UMass-Amherst has brought on more than just a talented hockey player in the likes of Ryan Badger and the Flyers organization wishes him the best of luck in the next step of his career.
Chicago, IL- This past weekend, seven USPHL member organizations sent their 18U and 16U teams to compete in the Tier 1 Elite/ USPHL Showdown hosted by the Chicago Fury. The schedule featured a full slate of top-ranked midget teams and ended with the USPHL representatives taking 23 of the 48 contests.
“The pace in every game was at an elite level,” commented Junior Bruins 18U head coach Chris Masters. “Every game was a difficult one for both teams. When you looked in every team’s locker room, they were all exhausted; the winning teams earned every win and the losing teams pushed them to the limit.”
Among the highlights of the tournament were the Junior Bruins’ win over the third-ranked Colorado Thunderbirds 16U team and wins by the Bruins, Team Comcast and Selects Academy over the 15th-ranked St. Louis Jr. Blues.
“The [USPHL teams’] performance speaks volumes about the level of talent in the USPHL,” stated Masters. “The level of consistency across the board is a lot greater than in previous years.
To Master, the major takeaway from the showcase was the competitiveness.
“There were very few blowouts in this tournament. Most games were won by one or two goals and a lot of games went to overtime,” he noted. “That shows just how tough every team in the tournament was to play against.
“The Fury and the Tier 1 Elite League were great hosts, and the weekend showed how great the hockey players are throughout the country, even in the non-traditional markets like Los Angeles and Dallas,” he said. “It was a great weekend of hockey.”
The teams from the Tier 1 Elite League will face off against the USPHL 18U and 16U divisions at the USPHL Winter Showcase on January 9-11.