Title: Florida Jr. Blades Ink Forward Quinn Shepard
By: Tia Preece
ESTERO, FL- The Florida Jr. Blades have signed forward Quinn Shepard, head coach Todd Pococke and assistant coach Tyler Carlston announced today.
“Quinn is a player we've known for a while and are excited to have with us this year,” said Pococke. “He is a player with great speed and an outstanding work ethic.”
Shepard enters his rookie campaign with the Jr. Blades after spending the 2017-18 season with Cleveland Barons U18 program in the Tier 1 Elite Hockey League.
The ’00 born forward initially was developed in the Florida Junior Everblades organization.
For more information on Shepard and the entire Jr. Blades organization please continue to visit www.FloridaJrBlades.com
1. The Florida Eels Are Very Excited to Announce the Signing of Top Veteran Yan Kainovsky 6’1” 221 lbs. from Kazakhstan to its Premier Team for its 2018-19 Season.
Kainovsky is a major acquisition for the Florida Eels and the USPHL. Without doubt he will be one of the top defensemen in the league. He brings a wealth of experience to the program. He is one of the top 1998 defensive prospects from Kazakhstan and Russia. He has been under the radar of the KHL. GM Scarpaci noted Yan joined a half dozen Eel prospects at the IHC NCDC Main Camp. He was a top guy there but Yan wanted to stay with the Eels. It is where he felt most comfortable. For an import coming clearly across the Atlantic that is a big thing.
Premier Coach Frank Scarpaci noted, “Yan played for the Eels at the Pro-Am Sr. Chowder Cup and he was without question the most dominate defensemen in the entire Junior A Elite Division which is their top Division. He dominated in all 3 zones. Shut down line rushes, took total ownership of the crease, was explosive in joining in the line rush and was a consummate threat on the offensive blueline. He has a hard-heavy big league shot and his pucks get to the net”
Coach Alex Sanchez adds “Yan has been working and training with the Eels Summer training program since early June. He has a tremendous work ethic. He is in the gym 5 days per week and works incredibly hard every second he is on the ice. His determination and attitude is extremely positive and in fact contagious.
GM Scarpaci concludes, “Having Yan join the other world Class D-men we brought in this season will clearly elevate our presence in the D-Zone and on the Blueline. It is indeed chilling as all of our guys are very high-end Defensemen and it will be an incredible season to watch. No doubt with this back end we will garner significant attention amongst the college coaches.
2. The Florida Eels Announce a 2nd Major Signing Today from Europe 6’1 170 lbs. 2000 DOB Filip Skorec Left Hand Shoot from Slovakia to its Premier Team.
GM Scarpaci notes, Skorecis a highly regarded top prospect from Slovakia. He is extremely well respected and he played for some of the top programs in Slovakia and the Czech Republic: the HC Pardubice U18, Czech U18and the Bili Tygri Liberec U18Czech U18, the Slovakia U16 International Team, and the HC Slovan Bratislava U18. Florida Eel’s scout in Russia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic reports Filip not only has phenomenal skill but possesses the highest character. Great kid on the ice, in the locker room and off the ice.
Florida Eels Coaches Frank Scarpaci and Alex Sanchez have watched the videos and scouting reports on Filip and notes, they are extremely impressed with this young man. Filip is a solid 2 way Defensemen. A 2000 who plays like a 1998. He is fast, very smart in his own end, high hockey IQ, very poised and extremely disciplined. Equally impressive is his puck handling and offensive abilities.
GM Scarpaci is looking forward to Filip arriving. Skorecis a key component in the Eels architectural design to have a formidable defensive corps that is solid and impenetrable.
He will fit perfectly in with the Eels this season. Very exciting player to watch.
3. The Florida Eels are Thrilled to Report that they have Inked 1999 6’4 209 lbs. netminder Thomas Steere from Exeter, NH,for the 2018-19 Season.
Steere played for the prestigious Groton Prep School in Groton Massachusetts for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons. In 2015-16 he played for the IHC U16 Club. GM Scarpaci notes Thomas has played for two strong programs and comes highly recommended by one of the top college scouts and junior recruiters in the Amateur hockey.
Florida Eels Coaches Frank Scarpaci and Alex Sanchez both noted they were indeed impressed with Steere’s performances at the USPHL May Showcase and the more recent Pro-Am Sr. Chowder Cup - in July Jr. A Division. He faced some pretty heavy shots from some of the top prospects in the USA Canada and Europe. He tracked the pucks well challenged shooters and controlled his rebounds. Very strong performances in all games”
We are very thrilled that Thomas joined our Junior program. He is a very bright young man. He joined the Eels as part of his mission to play college hockey. He knows full well dreams and hopes are not enough and he is intent on advancing to the NCAA level. This is a very determined and dedicated player. He knows full well the sacrifices needed and that is why we wanted him here concludes GM Scarpaci. He showed us at the Post Season Showcases his high compete level.
4. The Florida Eels are Thrilled To Announce The Signing of 6’8” 245 pound 2ndyear veteran F/D Jonah Barrager from Wichita, Kansasto the Eels Junior Program.
Jonah played last season for the Tri-City Hawks of the USPHL Midwest Division. Jonah also played for a short period of time for the Northern Cyclones 18U. He is a big guy who takes up a lot of ice and his presence is very much felt when he is on the ice. A physical guy at 6’8” and likes to use his body and strength to his advantage. We saw Jonah at the CCM Junior Prospects Showcase in May. He joined the Eels at the prestigious Pro-Am Sr. Chowder Cup in July in Massachusetts.
This is a huge opportunity for Barrager echoed Coach Frank Scarpaci. The Hallmark of the Eels is two-fold: Player Development and College Advancement. We readily saw at the Summer Showcases, that Barrager is hungry to bring his training and game to the Next Level.” Coach Sanchez continued, “Bringing your game to the Next Level does not come from just having “Dreams and Goals” It requires unwavering determination dedication and sacrifices. We saw this over the Post Season Showcases. He is indeed hungry and willing to make the sacrifices to make himself into a total player.”
GM Scarpaci concludes, Jonah is a high character young man. He comes strongly endorsed by one of the Eels most decorated Alumni players Zac Boyle who knows Jonah from his home town in Wichita, Kansas.
5. The Florida Eels Are Very Excited to Announce the Signing of 1999 Forward Alec Elinoff to its 2018-19 Season.
Elinoff played high school in Pennsylvania where he averaged 1.09 Points Per Game - in 34 games he scored 22 goals and garnered 15 assists for 37 points. Coach Scarpaci first scouted Alec at the USA Hockey High School All Star Nationals in Pittsburgh PA a year ago. This year we recruited him again and he enthusiastically joined our organization notes GM Scarpaci. Over the Post Season, Alec this past July he joined the Eels prospects team at the prestigious Pro-Am Sr. Chowder Cup in July.
Coach Scarpaci said he “was quite impressed with Alec during the Sr. Chowder Cup. More specifically, he showed his scoring touch scoring 2 goals and garnering a couple of assists over the July Pro Am Sr. Chowder Cup Showcase. He plays a hard nose type game and is not afraid to get into the grey areas of the ice. He battles really well and is physical and works opponents well along the wall.”
GM Scarpaci says Alec plays with enormous intensity and heart. He is so competitive- you can hear him all over the ice. A “Crabtree” Effort on the Ice…he wants to win” This young man is looking to go play college hockey and is willing to do what it takes to bring his game to that level. Very determined indeed. The Eels coaching staff welcomes him to our program.
6. The Florida Eels Is Excited to Announce That 6’)1” 175 LBS. Right Shot Hunter Stewart from Fontana California Signs with The Florida Eels Junior Program.
Stewart played for the herald California Wave Midget program in California. He attended the Global Junior Prospects Showcase in Las Vegas in June where GM Scarpaci and Coach Frank Scarpaci saw Hunter play. GM Scarpaci said there were over 500 players there showcasing their skills for over 100 scouts present. GM Scarpaci he was only interested in about 3 or 4 players and Hunter was at the top of his list. His size and hockey intelligence is what caught his eye. GM Scarpaci further commented Hunter showed the work ethic we were looking for. Global does a unique camp as they not only have the players play in 4 showcase games they also have them participate in 3 practice sessions. Hunter worked very hard in all of the sessions: games and practices. He stood out amongst many of the players even the veterans 2 -3 years his senior.
Coach Scarpaci noted, “Hunter has a nice quick release. You could see he has a knack for scoring. He is very aggressive on the puck. Works hard along the wall and was dominate in his shifts. We You can tell he has a high hockey IQ. We are thrilled to bring him into our program”
GM Scarpaci concluded, Hunter is determined to play NCAA Men’s hockey and clearly the Eels are the best route. We take players dreams and goals and ripen them into realities.
7. The Florida Eels Are Very Excited to Announce the Return of 5’9” 175 LBS. of Veteran Right Shot Gavin Media of Lakewood CO.
Gavin is entering his 3rdseason with the Eels. He has split time with the Elite and Premier teams over the past 3 seasons where he played 120 games and has accumulated 29 goals and notched 43 assists which averaged .60 points per game.
GM Scarpaci notes, we recruited Gavin as 3 seasons ago when he played for us at the prestigious Pro-Am Jr. Chowder Cup. He came in from Colorado where he played his youth hockey. When we brought him in to play on our USP3/Elite team we took the time to develop him into a very skilled player. He became one of the Division All Stars and leading scorers and was without question very exciting to watch. He was a constant scoring threat every time he hit the ice; he became one of the most dominate players in that division, he mastered power play and penalty kill special teams. He is an example of how the Eels player development process works.
Premier Coach Frank Scarpaci says “he has had Gavin since he arrived here. I take great pleasure in seeing Gavin improve immensely as a junior player and mature as an individual. With him and all of our players it is about “Player Development” Indeed, we were patient with our players where some teams lose sight of this. They rush guys through the process and don’t take the time to develop their skill set. Gavin has become a solid all-around player. He is very dangerous around the net. He is smart in all 3 zones. The difference between Gavin and other players is he not only creates scoring chances by getting the puck on net, he actually can put the puck in the net. This year we expect some breakout production from him”
Coach Alex Sanchez comments, “Medina is a hard-working guy - on and off the ice. He works full time while playing juniors and while finishing high school. Now that is impressive. Not too many players can handle that work load. He is disciplined and very determined. Very mature. You see his work ethic transcends to the ice. Moreover, he is very coachable”
GM Scarpaci concludes that college coaches look to the intangibles that Gavin underscores with his work ethic and determination. Today College Coaches are looking for individuals who can handle demanding schedules and who can budget their time. There are many guys who have good skills but can’t handle the time demands. Gavin will undoubtedly blossom this year and show coaches his true potential. We are thrilled to have him back.
Title: Texas Forward Jake Putnam Returns To Florida Jr. Blades
By: Tia Preece
ESTERO, FL- The Florida Jr. Blades have re-signed forward Jake Putnam for the upcoming 2018-19 season, head coach Todd Pococke and assistant coach Tyler Carlston announced today.
“We're looking forward to having Jake back with us this season,” said Pococke. “He plays a gritty style and sees the ice well, so we have great expectations.”
The Frisco, Texas native joined the Jr. Blades Premier program towards the end of last season where he posted 13 points including six goals and 7 assists in his nine games played.
Putnam was initially signed after splitting the 2017-18 season with the Arizona Bobcats 18U and Dallas Stars U18 programs.
For more information on Putnam and the entire Jr. Blades organization please continue to visit www.FloridaJrBlades.com.