Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Chase Stevenson From British Columbia Commits to UNH

Chase Stevenson
2019 UNH Commit
"(Chase Stevenson) is fast, plays with pace and drives to the net." Neutral Zone
"A good skater with a very high and consistent compete level." George Ross, Scout for Spokane Chiefs (WHL)
"Chase is a very complete player and can play any one of the forward positions." Rylan Ferster, Head Coach/General Manager, West Kelowna Warriors
The steady stream of hockey players born and raised in British Columbia, Canada will continue to flow to the University of New Hampshire for the foreseeable future. Versatile forward Chase Stevenson, who plays for his hometown West Kelowna Warriors in the BCHL, has committed to UNH for the 2019-20 season. The 2017-18 UNH Wildcats, currently ranked #13 in NCAA Division I, includes Captain Dylan Chanter (Hometown: Armstrong BC; BCHL Team: Vernon Vipers), Cameron Marks (North Vancouver; Coquitlam Express), Marcus Vela (Burnaby; Langley Rivermen), Liam Blackburn (Prince George; West Kelowna Warriors), and Matt Dawson (Delta; Surrey Eagles). Angus Crookshank (North Vancouver; Langley Rivermen), who currently leads the BCHL in goals per game (9 in 11 games; .81 GPG), has signed a National Letter of Intent with UNH and is on target to enroll next season.

After excelling at the Okanagan Hockey Academy for three years and with the Okanagan Rockets in the British Columbia Major Midget League for two seasons, Chase Stevenson was called up last November to play with the West Kelowna Warriors. As a BCHL rookie, Stevenson tallied 10 goals, including 2 game-winners, and 10 assists in 33 regular season games.

At the Bauer BCHL Showcase in Chilliwack, BC earlier this season, Stevenson was in the starting lineup playing left wing. In the Warriors' two victories, he scored a goal and added an assist. There were over 200 college and pro scouts in attendance. Among them were scouts from Neutral Zone** who ranked Stevenson as a "B+" player and provided this assessment:

"Prospect has nifty hands. He is fast, plays with pace and drives to the net. He's also patient."
Rating - 3 3/4 out 5 Stars. For purposes of comparison, Neutral Zone currently rates Angus Crookshank as a 4 star prospect.

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

George Ross, a scout for the Spokane Chiefs of the Western Hockey League who covers the Minnesota region, provided this assessment of Stevenson:
(Chase) is undersized but has good strength and is good in one-on-one battles. Not a high end skill guy, but a good skater with a very high and consistent compete level."
Stevenson (DOB: 1/13/1999), a left-shot forward, is 18 years old and has played in 18 Warriors' games so far this season. He has registered 3 goals and 6 assists. Here are video highlights of each goal:

Rylan Ferster, Stevenson's coach with the Warriors over the last two seasons, has provided this assessment:
"Chase is a very complete player and can play any one of the forward positions. His attention to detail in every zone is outstanding and is one of those players that no matter where he plays, he makes his line mates better."


I had an opportunity to interview Chase Stevenson, via email, about his hockey career and commitment to UNH:

Mike Lowry ("C-H-C"): Congratulations on your commitment to play for the University of New Hampshire. What are the main reasons you chose UNH?

Chase Stevenson: Thank you. The main reason I chose UNH was because of its fantastic combination of athletics and academics. One of my main goals is to win a college hockey national championship and I believe UNH gives me the best chance to do so. With Coach Souza taking over as head coach next season, I feel that I will be able to have a significant impact on UNH hockey, and will be a key contributor along the journey of bringing a national championship back to UNH. Right from the academic buildings to the hockey facilities, UNH will give me every opportunity to develop into a better hockey player and person, and I couldn't be more excited to commit to such a prestigious program.

Mike Lowry: What other college programs did you consider during the recruiting process? Which schools did you visit and which ones made an offer to you?

Chase Stevenson: Throughout my commitment process, I talked to Division I schools, such as UNH, that offer athletic scholarships and to Ivy League schools such as Harvard, Yale, and Cornell that offer financial aid based on need. After going on my official visit to the UNH campus, I knew it was the right place for me.

Lowry: Have you and the UNH coaches agreed on a target date for you to enroll as a freshman at UNH and join the team?

Stevenson: I will begin attending UNH at the start of the 2019/20 season.

Lowry: At this stage in your hockey development, what are the strengths of your game? What areas are you trying to improve?

Stevenson: The biggest strengths of my game are my hockey IQ and my skating ability. I like to use my speed and skill to create plays at both ends of the rink and be a reliable two way forward. The biggest thing I need to work on is being a more consistent player and just developing physically. I need to continue to develop my strength and speed in order to be a key contributor at the next level.

Lowry: Did you see the team play a game during your official visit? If so, how do you think your style and skill set will fit with the way UNH plays?

Stevenson: Unfortunately, I was only able to watch a practice while I was at UNH. However, that gave me a good sense of how the team plays. I feel that my skating ability and hockey IQ will allow me to fit in very well with UNH hockey. They play a very fast-paced, offensive style and I couldn't be more excited to join the team in 2019.

Lowry: During this season with the West Kelowna Warriors you've been playing both center and wing. Do you have a preference? How are you effective at each position?

Stevenson: I feel comfortable at both centre and wing and like to be a player that can be counted on in any position. Whether I am playing center or wing I pride myself on making plays at both ends of the rink and being a player that is counted on by his teammates to make key plays at crucial times during a game.

Lowry: In 2014, the Red Deer Rebels drafted you in the Western Hockey League Bantam Draft. Why did you forego the major junior route and decide to pursue an NCAA scholarship?

Stevenson: Shortly after I was selected in the Bantam draft, my dad and I flew out to the Boston area to look at 5 universities including UNH. Ever since that trip, I knew college hockey was going to be the place for me and was going to give me the best opportunity to develop into a pro hockey player.

Lowry: Have you graduated from high school? What are your academic strengths and interests? Have you thought about what you might major in when you enroll at UNH?

Stevenson: I just recently graduated from high school this past June and am excited to begin my college career in 2019. My strongest subjects are math and English because I enjoy the depth of understanding it takes to grasp their difficult concepts. I plan on attending the Paul College of Business and Economics while at UNH.


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