Monday, December 05, 2011

UNH Recruits Update: Week 10

Player of the Week - Collin MacDonald

For the second time this season, Collin MacDonald has been selected as the "Player of the Week" among all UNH Recruits. When the Jersey Hitmen forward was selected back in Week 3, he had scored 7 goals over a 3-game stretch. This past week, the Eastern Junior Hockey League returned to action after the Thanksgiving break and MacDonald lead his team to 2 wins and an overtime loss. The 6'2", 196 lbs left-winger scored 4 goals in those three games, including 2 goals against the Philadelphia Revolution. MacDonald scored his 4th game-winning goal of the season in the Philly matchup. MacDonald is now the 3rd leading goal scorer in the EJHL and is tied for 10th in total points.

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to watch MacDonald and the Hitmen play against the Springfield Pics at the Olympia Ice Center in West Springfield, MA. MacDonald scored the first goal for the Hitmen with less than 30 seconds remaining in the 1st period. On the play, MacDonald was positioned near the crease to the right of the Springfield goalie and he batted the puck in off a rebound. When I first saw MacDonald play back on the opening game of the season in September, he was playing on the third line. Since then, he has become the top-scoring player on the Hitmen and gets significant icetime. MacDonald is now the starting left-winger and plays on the Hitmen's first power play unit.

What impressed me most yesterday was MacDonald's play in the offensive zone. He used his strength and size to control the puck in traffic and along the boards. Early in the third period with the Hitmen trailing 3-4, MacDonald carried the puck from the middle of the blueline, around a couple of Springfield players in the left faceoff circle, and managed to get a shot on goal as he was being held and dragged down to the ice. In the subsequent power play, MacDonald effectively moved the puck along the halfwall and corner boards.

With about a minute remaining in regulation, still trailing by a goal, Hitmen Head Coach Toby Harris pulled the goalie and MacDonald was on the ice to take the faceoff. Seconds later, MacDonald made a nifty spin move and got a shot on goal. Finally, at the 25.7 mark, Quinnipiac recruit Jason Stephanik tied the game. Early in the 4-on-4 overtime, MacDonald showed good speed and puck handling as he moved the puck across the red and bluelines into the Springfield zone. But a minute later, Springfield scored the overtime goal on a sharp-angle shot.

Throughout the game, I was very impressed with the play of 2013 Recruit Brett Pesce, a 6'3", 182 lbs, defenseman. I will feature Pesce in an upcoming post.

2012 Recruits
Dan CorrealeNanaimo ClippersBCHLInjured0000
Maxim GaudreaultSioux CityUSHL2054914
Jamie HillWaterlooUSHL19471132
Collin MacDonaldJersey HitmenEJHL 231892712
Kyle SmithJunior BruinsEJHL21920294
Mike VecchioneTri-CityUSHL174596
2012 or '13 Recruit
Jordan MastersMuskegonUSHL 1727931
2013 Recruits
Matias ClelandWaterlooUSHL1202017
Dylan MallerTri-CityUSHL100112
Brett PesceJersey HitmenEJHL111454
Andrew PoturalskiBuffalo Jr SabresOJHL2112172912
2013 or '14 Recruit
Michael McNicholasMuskegonUSHL80220
2014 Recruits
Shane EisermanCushing AcademyNEPSAC2022-
Tyler KelleherUSA U17 TeamUSHL114594
2015 Recruits
Jason KalinowskiSalisbury Prep NEPSAC1 10 1-

News & Notes

British Columbia Hockey League
~ 2012 Recruit Dan Correale, who has been recovering from shoulder surgery since mid-summer, was traded from the Grande Prairie Storm of the Alberta Junior Hockey League to the Nanaimo Clippers of the BCHL. At the end of last season, Coach Mike Vandekamp left the AJHL franchise in Grande Prairie to become the Head Coach and General Manager of the Nanaimo Clippers. In the 2007-'08 and 2008-'09 seasons, Dan Correale played for the Prince George Spruce Kings in the BCHL. In 2009, Coach Vandecamp recruited Correale to come play for him in Grande Prairie. Now, Dan Correale has followed Coach Vandecamp back to the BCHL. He is expected to be in the lineup in the next few weeks.
~ 2013 or 2014 Recruit Michael McNicholas has been playing more regularly as of late for the Muskegon Lumberjacks. In a Dec. 2nd victory over Youngstown, McNicholas scored the first two assists of his USHL career.
~ 2014 Recruit Tyler Kelleher picked up 2 assists for the USA Under-17 team this week. One came on a game-tying goal in the 3rd period of a game against Waterloo. Team USA went on to win the game in overtime. Upon seeing Kelleher play for the first time last night, Chris Peters - Writer and Editor of The United States of Hockey blog and former Public Relations representative for USA Hockey - tweeted "Tyler Kelleher is a joy to watch. Little guy can fly out there."
New England Prep School Hockey Conference:
~ In his first two games as a member of the Cushing Academy Penguins, 2014 Recruit Shane Eiserman picked up two assists.
~ A minute and a half into the first game of the season, 2015 Recruit Jason Kalinowski scored a power play goal for The Salisbury School. They went on to beat Williston-Northampton 5-1.


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