USHL Update

The Bulldog Country OFFICIAL USHL Update.  

It really looks a lot more important if you bold it, so why not?  The United States Hockey League is the US' tier 1 junior hockey league.  When explaining it, I usually revert to calling the USHL "AAA minor league" College Hockey.  Many college hockey players will spend time in the USHL or the NAHL or a league within the CJHL.

In the USHL, playoffs are right around the bend, which means teams will compete for the Clark Cup.  Some UMD Recruits are on teams that have clinched a playoff berth.  Can you guess who?  UMD recruits from Fargo are also highlighted, earning rewards and accomplishments.  More to follow below...

Enjoy.


Playoffs are officially set.  Mark your calendars for April 17th when the USHL Playoffs officially begin.  For those who are unaware of how the USHL playoff structure works, let me lend you a hand.  The first 4 teams (with the most points, of course) from each conference are given bigs into the tournament.  At this point, all of the bids are finally locked, even with games left to play.

In the Eastern Conference, Dubuque clinched not only a playoff berth, but the Anderson Cup (league title) as well; UMD recruit Karson Kuhlman is currently skating with Dubuque.  The rest of the teams from the Eastern Conference that have clinched a bid is Green Bay, Youngstown and Muskegon.  Chicago, Cedar Rapids, Team USA and Indiana, where UMD recruit Adam Johnson currently resides, were the tames that failed to advance to playoffs from the East.

Karson Kuhlman
From the Western Conference, Sioux Falls earned the division title and clinched a seat for playoffs.  Fargo, home of UMD standout recruits Dom Toninato and Alex Iafallo, Waterloo and Lincoln all clinched the remaining playoff berths as well.  Sioux City, home of the most UMD recruits (Jared Thomas, Blake Heinrich, Dan Molenaar and Neal Pionk), Tri-City, Des Moines and Omaha, where UMD recruit Kyle Osterberg skates, unfortunately missed the opportunity to make a run for the Clark Cup.

You can find Dubuque's article on the Fighting Saints' Anderson Cup clinch here.  For a better view at the league standings you can either click the picture or click here.


UMD Recruit Alex Iafallo earned USHL honors this week.  Iafallo earned a spot as one of the weeks top players during the weekend.  Iafallo will join the Bulldogs next year as he has already been with Fargo Force for two years.  Release highlights from the USHL:
The second-year forward led the Force to a pair of wins over the weekend, tallying six points (3g, 3a) with a plus-five on-ice rating.  Friday night in Sioux Falls, he registered a goal and a season-high three assists in a 7-4 win over the Stampede. One of his assists came shorthanded and he tied a game-high with a plus-three on-ice rating.  He responded with a pair of goals and an assist in Saturday’s 4-3 win over the Sioux City Musketeers.  His second goal was the game-winner to help the Force overcome a 3-1 deficit and it was also his 20th goal of the season. The 19-year-old from Eden, NY is sixth on the team in scoring with 42 points (20g, 22a) and is tied for sixth in the League with a plus-35 rating.  He is committed to the University of Minnesota-Duluth. - USHL Release
Iafallo, who is incredibly rated +35 thus far, will pull on the UMD Bulldog sweater next year, we predict, along with teammate Dom Toninato.

P.K. O'Handley becomes fourth coach to earn 500 career USHL wins.  O'Handley, coach of the Waterloo Black Hawks, joins the ranks of current Minnesota State coach Mike Hastings, Dave Siciliano and Bob Ferguson.  O'Handley is also the only coach in the USHL to have coached over 1,000 games.

The Black Hawks defeated the Cedar Rapids Roughriders to capture the special moment for O'Handley, who has a handful of other accomplishments as well.  With a Clark Cup title, an Anderson Cup, two USHL coach of the year awards and a USHL general manager of the year award, O'Handley has had a bright career in the USHL.

Ask almost any NHL player about O'Handley; like J.T. Brown (Minnesota Duluth/Tampa Bay Lightening), Parker Milner (Boston College), Joe Pavelski (San Jose Sharks) or Craig Smith (Nashville Preds) who have all been taught by O'Handley, I'm sure they'll tell you the same thing...   The guy's a helluva great coach.

You can view the USHL's article about P.K. O'Handley here.  Or Waterloo's postgame post here.

Future Bulldog, Dom Toninato, sets Fargo Force Record.  Toninato broke the regualr season scoring record for the Fargo Force not too long ago.  The record came on March 29th, when he tallied two assists to pass Matt Leitner, who currently plays for Minnesota State, with 67 points.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling, especially to do it in my first year in the USHL," said Toninato. "Couldn’t do it without my teammates, especially my linemates.”
Toninato now sits with 70 points so far this season, with 29 goals and 41 assists.  He will have time to add to his record as well, being there is still two games left to be played until the USHL playoffs begin.

Toninato's arrival to Minnesota Duluth next season has been greatly anticipated, as we've watched him develop tremendously thus far in tier 1 juniors.  The former Duluth East standout should provide the Bulldogs with a good amount of scoring, something the Dogs lacked in many scenarios last season.

Top-scoring NCAA hockey recruits.  The spreadsheet below names a few of the leading scorers for each estimated arrival classes.  Split into Forwards and Defensemen and ranked based on the players point per game statistic.

Incoming Freshman:
Player
Pos
Current Team
GP
G
A
Pts.
Pts/G
College
Justin Kloos
F
Waterloo
52
28
57
85
1.63
Minnesota
Taylor Cammarata
F
Waterloo
57
36
54
90
1.58
Minnesota
Zach Stepan
F
Waterloo
54
32
44
76
1.41
Ohio State
Vince Hinostroza
F
Waterloo
45
25
35
60
1.33
Notre Dame
Brian Ward
F
Tri-City
40
22
29
51
1.28
St. Lawrence
Michael Szmatula
F
Dubuque
62
37
39
76
1.23
Northeastern
Jake Guentzel
F
Sioux City
57
27
41
68
1.19
Nebraska Omaha
Austin Cangelosi
F
Youngstown
53
20
43
63
1.19
Boston College
Kyle Novak
F
Green Bay
61
27
45
72
1.18
Western Michigan
Nicholas Schilkey
F
Green Bay
57
30
37
67
1.18
Ohio State
Dom Toninato
F
Fargo
61
28
41
69
1.13
Minnesota Duluth
Alex Kile
F
Green Bay
54
30
30
60
1.11
Michigan
Peter Quenneville
F
Dubuque
62
31
37
68
1.10
Quinnipiac
Brendan Harms
F
Fargo
62
24
44
68
1.10
Bemidji State
J.T. Stenglein
F
Waterloo
52
24
31
55
1.06
Michigan State


Player
Pos
Current Team
GP
G
A
Pts.
Pts/G
College
Ian McCoshen
D
Waterloo
52
11
31
42
0.81
Boston College
Paul Ladue
D
Lincoln
59
11
35
46
0.78
North Dakota
Matias Cleland
D
Omaha
61
9
30
39
0.64
New Hampshire
Ryan Lowney
D
Youngstown
60
8
29
37
0.62
Ferris State
Barrett Kalib
D
Green Bay
47
6
21
27
0.57
Northern Michigan
Jaccob Slavin
D
Chicago
58
5
27
32
0.55
Colorado College
Niklas Nevalainen
D
Dubuque
58
5
27
32
0.55
St. Cloud State
Mark Friedman
D
Waterloo
62
8
26
34
0.55
Bowling Green
Victor Newell
D
Waterloo
50
7
20
27
0.54
Harvard
Ian Brady
D
Cedar Rapids
55
6
23
29
0.53
Nebraska Omaha


Debut Set For 2014:
Player
Pos
Current Team
GP
G
A
Pts.
Pts/G
College
Dennis Kravchenko
F
Sioux Falls
55
22
38
60
1.09
Umass
CJ Franklin
F
Sioux Falls
61
31
25
56
0.92
Minnesota State
Jake Eichel
F
U.S. NDPT U17
37
18
15
33
0.89
Boston University
Nick Schmaltz
F
Green Bay
61
17
32
49
0.80
North Dakota
Matt Weis
F
Green Bay
56
13
27
40
0.71
Ohio State
Jake Randolph
F
Omaha
61
13
29
42
0.69
Nebraska Omaha
John Hayden
F
U.S. NDPT U18
43
15
14
29
0.67
Yale
Tony Calderone
F
Sioux Falls
62
28
13
41
0.66
Princeton
Jared Thomas
F
Sioux City
56
15
22
37
0.66
Minnesota Duluth
Willem Nong-Lambert
F
Des Moines
50
17
14
31
0.62
Western Michigan


Player
Pos
Current Team
GP
G
A
Pts.
Pts/G
College
Gavin Bayreuther
D
Fargo
40
4
16
20
0.50
St. Lawrence
Michael Kapla
D
Sioux City
49
9
15
24
0.49
Umass-Lowell
Tucker Poolman
D
Omaha
61
13
14
27
0.44
North Dakota
Nolan Gluchowski
D
Tri-City
46
7
11
18
0.39
St. Lawrence
Keegan Ford
D
Dubuque
42
4
12
16
0.38
Wisconsin


Taylor Cammarata - Minnesota Gopher Recruit
Lastly, if you're interested in power rankings, click this link.  JuniorHockey.com put the rankings together and should give one a good idea as to what to expect from this year's playoffs.

Enjoy.

Questions?  Comments?  Ask Below!!

0 comments :