Wednesday, August 10, 2016

UNH Freshman Patrick Grasso: Speedy, Scoring Chance Generator

Patrick Grasso - UNH Forward #20


When Patrick Grasso turned 16, he was invited to try out for the Des Moines Buccaneers in the United States Hockey League. Although he had not been drafted and only weighed 152 pounds, his play in camp impressed the Bucs' coaching staff and he was offered a spot on their active roster. Grasso chose to split his time between the Omaha AAA U16 Lancers and the Des Moines Bucs. He played 17 games with Des Moines in the 2012-13 season and scored 3 goals and 2 assists.

Over the course of his three full seasons with the Des Moines Buccaneers, Grasso's scoring output steadily increased. After scoring 9 goals and 15 assists in the 2013-14 season, Grasso followed up with 9 goals and 25 assists in 2014-15. This season, Grasso was named the Captain of the Bucs squad and he more than doubled his goal-scoring. The right-shot forward played in every game of the 60 game schedule, and scored 22 goals and 21 assists. Among all USHL players, Grasso tied for 13th in goals and tied for 18th in scoring. His 3 game-winning goals placed him in a tie for 5th in the USHL.

When Patrick Grasso comes to play for UNH, fans will notice similarities with former Wildcats' star Stevie Moses. Both are fast, right-shot forwards who readily find open ice in the offensive zone for frequent shots on goal. Grasso at 5'7", 175 lbs. and Moses, 5'9", 170 lbs., are undersized players who can score goals in bunches. Grasso did it all for the Buccaneers this season. He started at all three forward positions, was the point-man on their first power play unit, and fore-checker on the first penalty kill unit. He turned 20 years old at the end of May.

Patrick Grasso
Last Team: Des Moines Buccaneers
United States Hockey League
DOB: 5-29-1996 Hometown: Ankeny, Iowa
Forward, 5'7", 175 lbs. Shoots Right
Commit to UNH: 8-31-2012 at Age 16 years, 3 months.
Signed National Letter of Intent: 11-11-2015

Coach's Report

Over the last two seasons, Patrick Grasso was coached by Dave Allison, Head Coach of the Des Moines Buccaneers. Over the weekend, I had an opportunity to interview Coach Allison regarding Grasso's strengths and readiness for NCAA hockey:

Mike Lowry ("C-H-C"): What are Patrick's strengths and how did he develop during his two seasons with you in Des Moines?

Coach Dave Allison: Patrick is a well rounded player and person who can handle any situation. His hockey IQ and insight will bode well for him after his playing days are over and he gets into a coaching or management position.

Mike Lowry: What kind of adjustments will he need to make as he begins his NCAA career?

Coach Allison: The adjustments will be the obvious size of the players as well as the ice sheet. But when you watch Patrick, it will not be the size of the dog in the fight, it will be the size of the fight in the dog. And this kid plays beyond his size absolutely!

Scouting Report from Neutral Zone**

"Small and shifty veteran in his fourth season with Des Moines (USHL) closing in on 100 points in his career. He plays the game with a lot pace, can stop on a dime, elite acceleration and good on-ice intelligence. The Iowa native can process the game while at full speed and creates a lot of scoring chances off the rush. While he's a pass first type, he's been able to capitalize on the powerplay demonstrating a quick release and accurate follow through. The Bucs captain signed his letter of intent with UNH where he'll play on an olympic sheet and try to utilize that extra space to his advantage. He'll need to improve the play in his own end carrying a -68 +/- in his USHL career, but our scouts are confident he's already taken strides to round out his game this season."
Rating: 3 & 3/4 Stars out of 5 Stars.

According to, Neutral Zone is a first-of-its-kind hockey scouting and news site which identifies, ranks and profiles NCAA (Div. 1 & Div. 3) and Ontario Hockey League (OHL) prospects from across North America. The innovative site leverages top quality, unbiased scouts to profile players and track their progress over the course of their amateur careers. Our team is made up of nearly 30 experienced scouts who attend games, tournaments and showcase events to discover and evaluate the best players in their respective regions. Neutral Zone scouts come from diverse, high-level hockey backgrounds, most of which include playing, coaching or scouting at the NCAA, CHL, CIS or professional levels..

** Reprinted by permission of Brendan Collins, Director of Scouting at Neutral Zone.

2015-16 Achievements

~ Reached 100 career USHL points on March 25, 2016.
~ USHL "Forward of the Week" March 28, 2016.
~ Regular Season: 3rd Leading Buccaneers' Scorer (43 pts) and 2nd leading goal-scorer (22).
~ Selected by teammates as Bucs' Most Valuable Player.

2015-16 USHL Highlight Reel

Junior & Midget Hockey Statistics

Player Season Team League GP Goals Asst Pts +/- PIM
Patrick Grasso  (D) 2015-2016 Des Moines Buccaneers USHL 60 22 21 43 -16 14
2014-2015 Des Moines Buccaneers USHL 60 9 25 34 -23 12
2013-2014 Des Moines Buccaneers USHL 59 9 15 24 -30 11
2012-2013 Des Moines Buccaneers USHL 17 3 2 5 -4 0
Omaha Lancers 16U NAPHL 16U 22 13 21 34 8
Playoffs NAPHL 16U 5 2 6 8 2

Links to Articles on Patrick Grasso

Meet Patrick Grasso: UNH's Newest Recruit

UNH Recruits Update: Nov-13-2015


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