Wednesday, April 23, 2014

9 UNH Recruits Sign National Letter of Intent

Warren Foegele Signs NLI


All the recruits who verbally committed to UNH with a target date of Fall 2014 to enroll and join the men's hockey team have signed a National Letter of Intent. The NCAA defines the NLI as:
"...a binding agreement between an NCAA school and a student-athlete in which the student-athlete agrees to attend the school for one year and the school agrees to provide financial aid to the student-athlete. The NLI is voluntary and prospective student-athletes do not have to participate to play sports or receive financial aid."
The incoming freshman class includes 5 forwards - Shane Eiserman, Warren Foegele, Michael McNicholas, Andrew Poturalski, and Jason Salvaggio, 3 defensemen - Dylan Chanter, Cameron Marks, and John Furgele, and goalie Adam Clark.

Here's the basic demographic information for the 2014 recruits who have signed an NLI. It includes 2 informative links for each recruit. Click on the player's name and a link to his statistics comes up on a separate screen. Click on the date next to "Commit to UNH:" for a link to an article which announced the player's commitment to UNH.

2014 Recruits

Dylan Chanter
Vernon Vipers
British Columbia Hockey League
DOB: 9-17-1995 Hometown: Armstrong, BC
Defense, 6'3", 203 lbs. Shoots Right
Commit to UNH: 2-22-2012
Adam Clark
Salmon Arm SilverBacks
British Columbia Hockey League
DOB: 3-23-1993 Hometown: Sherwood Park, Alberta
Goalie, 6'5", 210 lbs. Catches Left
Commit to UNH: 9-28-2012
Shane Eiserman
Dubuque Fighting Saints
United States Hockey League
DOB: 10-10-1995 Hometown: West Newbury, MA
Forward, 6'1", 180 lbs. Shoots Left
Commit to UNH: 8-27-2011
Warren Foegele
St Andrew's College
CISAA/MPHL
DOB: 4-1-1996 Hometown: Markham, ON
Forward, 6'1", 182 lbs. Shoots Left
Commit to UNH: 2-20-2013
John Furgele
Jersey Hitmen
United States Premiere Hockey League
DOB: 1-15-1993 Hometown: Glen Mills, PA
Defense, 5'9", 181 lbs. Shoots Right
Commit to UNH: 9-11-2013
Cameron Marks
Coquitlam Express
British Columbia Hockey League
DOB: 4-9-1995 Hometown: North Vancouver, BC
Defense, 6'0", 175 lbs. Shoots Right
Commit to UNH: 4-11-2012
Michael McNicholas
Vernon Vipers
British Columbia Hockey League
DOB: 3-23-1994 Hometown: Manhattan Beach, CA
Forward, 5'10", 175 lbs. Shoots Left
Commit to UNH: 2-13-2011
Andrew Poturalski
Cedar Rapids Rough Riders
United States Hockey League
DOB: 1-14-1994 Hometown: Williamsville, NY
Forward, 5'10", 176 lbs. Shoots Right
Commit to UNH: 10-5-2011
Jason Salvaggio
Indiana Ice
United States Hockey League
DOB: 10-1-1994 Hometown: Hanson, MA
Forward, 6'1", 190 lbs. Shoots Left
Commit to UNH: 6-12-2013


This table shows each player's production in the 2013-14 season:

Player Team League GP Goals Asst Pts PIM
2014 Recruits
Dylan Chanter  (D) Vernon Vipers BCHL 19 0 0 0 16
Playoffs BCHL 19 4 3 7 18
Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 14 1 1 2 21
Adam Clark  (G) Salmon Arm SilverBacks BCHL 30 14W 14L 2.87 .911
Shane Eiserman  (F) Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 53 16 24 40 71
Playoffs USHL 4 0 1 1 6
Warren Foegele  (F) St. Andrews College CISAA 14 17 6 23 15
Playoffs CISAA 5 5 4 9 10
St. Andrews College MPHL 13 12 17 29 14
Playoffs MPHL 3 6 5 11 2
John Furgele  (D) Jersey Hitmen USPHL 44 8 29 37 16
Playoffs USPHL 6 0 5 5 0
Cameron Marks  (D) Coquitlam Express BCHL 57 4 24 28 12
Playoffs BCHL 19 0 5 5 4
Michael McNicholas  (F) Vernon Vipers BCHL 56 23 46 69 20
Playoffs BCHL 19 5 13 18 6
Andrew Poturalski  (F) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 60 27 37 64 28
Playoffs USHL 4 2 1 3 2
Jason Salvaggio  (F) Indiana Ice USHL 52 15 11 26 39
Playoffs USHL 2 0 0 0 2


The Class of 2018 includes 4 players who verbally committed to UNH when they were either 15 or 16 years old. Two members of the class will be 18 years old and three will be 19 years old when they enroll in September, 2014.

Class of 2018

Player Commitment Age Signed NLI Enrollment Age
Dylan Chanter  (D) 16 years, 5 months November 2013 19 years, 0 months
Adam Clark  (G) 19 years, 6 months April 2014 21 years, 0 months
Shane Eiserman  (F) 15 years, 10 months November 2013 18 years, 11 months
Warren Foegele  (F) 16 years, 10 months April 2014 18 years, 5 months
John Furgele  (D) 18 years, 8 months April 2014 19 years, 8 months
Cameron Marks  (D) 17 years, 0 months November 2013 19 years, 5 months
Michael McNicholas  (F) 16 years, 11 months April 2014 20 years, 6 months
Andrew Poturalski  (F) 17 years, 9 months April 2014 20 years, 8 months
Jason Salvaggio  (F) 18 years, 8 months April 2014 19 years, 11 months


The incoming class is the largest since the 9 freshmen who came in the 2007-08 academic year. That group included James van Riemsdyk, Phil DeSimone, Mike Sislo, and Paul Thompson - players who had very productive NCAA careers.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Jake Ryczek: Another Top Selects Academy Player Commits to UNH

16-year-old Defenseman
Jake Ryczek


A few weeks ago, the second leading scorer on the USPHL U16 Champion Selects Academy team, Joey Cipollone, verbally committed to play for the University of New Hampshire. Now, Jake Ryczek (pronounced Rye-zick), the second leading scorer among the Selects Hockey Academy defensemen, has also committed to UNH. The 16-year-old Ryczek (DOB: 3/19/1998) and his teammates from the South Kent School have just completed a very successful 2013-14 season.

In January, the 5'11', 170 lbs., right-shot defenseman from Ludlow, Massachusetts was named to the USPHL U16 All-Star Team. Ryczek's performance in the All-Star game, held at Lawler Arena on the campus of Merrimack College, caught the eye of U.S. Hockey Report:
"Selects Academy 5’11” RD Jake Ryczek, a ’98 from the Springfield area, also stood out. His skating is excellent, and he’s comfortable with the puck on his stick."
The Selects Academy Cardinals finished the USPHL U16 regular season in first place with a perfect record of 29-0-0. Ryczek played in 26 games and scored 7 goals, including 2 power play goals, and 10 assists.

Selects Academy breezed through the USPHL U16 Playoffs winning all three games. In the Championship Game against the Jersey Hitmen, Jake Ryczek scored the second of the Cardinals' goals as they won 5-3.

In addition to league play in the USPHL, the Selects Academy/South Kent School U16 Team competed in the USA Hockey Regional and National Tournaments. They did so as the Central Connecticut Capitals. In November, they won the New England Regional Championship. Earlier this month, the Capitals traveled to Green Bay, Wisconsin to compete in the USA Hockey Tier I National Championships. After losing the opening game to Honey Baked (Michigan), the Connecticut team defeated Thunder Hockey (Tennessee/Georgia) 6-3 in Game 2. Jake Ryczek scored the team's first goal and assisted on the third.

With an opportunity to advance to the semifinals on the line, Ryczek and the Capitals faced the Buffalo Regals in the final game of pool play. After three 17-minute periods, the teams were tied 3-3. Neither scored in overtime setting up a shootout. The Regals' third shooter, Ryan Wheeler, scored. After three Capitals' shooters did not score, Jake Ryczek stepped up with the team trailing 1-0:



After 5 shooters, Central Connecticut and Buffalo were tied 1-1. Jake Ryczek was chosen to be the Capitals first shooter in the sudden death phase. Unfortunately, he did not score and the Regals' shooter did. No doubt, Jake and his Selects Academy teammates will be looking forward to earning a return trip to the National Championships next season.

I had an opportunity to interview Jake, via email, about his background, commitment to UNH, and future plans:

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?
Jake Ryczek: Thank you. I’m very excited and so is my family. I chose UNH because the first time I was on campus it just felt right. UNH has a great coaching staff, I felt my game fit their hockey style and UNH is a great academic school for me.

Mike Lowry: What other college programs were you considering?
Jake Ryczek: I’ve visited some Hockey East Schools and some ECAC Schools, but I always wanted to play Hockey East and UNH was my number 1.

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?
Ryczek: I would like to play a year of Juniors, so tentatively 2016 -2017.

Lowry: I watched one of the Selects Hockey Academy games from the USA Hockey U16 Nationals and saw you score a power play goal against the Thunder Hockey club. You showed mobility and an accurate shot in the offensive zone. At this stage in your hockey development, what are the strengths of your game? What areas are you trying to improve?
Ryczek: I would say my strengths are my speed and skating ability, making a good first pass and my quick release shot from the point.
The areas I would like to improve are my defensive plays in front of the net and, being 5’ 11”, I’m not a big defenseman so I need to get stronger.

Lowry: You have a lot in common with Joey Cipollone who committed to UNH last week. You both played for the Selects Academy/South Kent School U16 team that recently won the USPHL U16 Championship and you were selected to the USPHL All-Star Team. Have you had many opportunities to be on the ice at the same time as Joey and, if so, do your styles compliment each other?
Ryczek: It’s great being out on the ice with Joey. He’s the type of player that just makes everyone around him better. We didn’t have an official captain on our team this year, but in my opinion it would have been Joey. I’m very excited that we will continue to be team-mates at UNH.

Lowry: Do you plan on returning to Selects Academy to play next season and if so, will you play for the U18 team?
Ryczek: Yes I will be returning to South Kent (Selects Academy) to play for Coach Plante on the U18 team.

Lowry: Do you anticipate playing junior hockey before coming to UNH? If so, what leagues would you consider playing in?
Ryczek: Yes I do plan on playing Juniors. I would like to play in the USHL.

Lowry: Like current UNH player Tyler Kelleher and his brother Charlie, a fellow UNH recruit, you come from Western Massachusetts (Ludlow). Do you know Tyler and Charlie and have you played hockey with them?
Ryczek: Yes we played for the same organization, The New England Junior Falcons. Being different ages, we didn’t play on the same team but we have skated together at skills events, goalie clinics and just for fun pick-up games.

Lowry: Back when you were a 12-year-old, 7th grader, you played for the New York Pee Wee Rangers that won the Quebec International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament. What was that experience like?
Ryczek: That was one of the most unbelievable experiences I’ve had in my hockey career. Spending 10 days in Quebec City, I billeted with the Boutin family, who were very good to me and made me feel like I was at home. The final game was against Little Ceasars and there was roughly 10,000 people in the Colisee. Coach Messier and Coach Devenney kept us very calm and confident to get the win.
After returning home we went to Madison Square Garden to watch the Rangers play the Bruins, had the honor of meeting Mark Messier and went out on the ice between periods to get introduced as the New York Pee-Wee Ranger Champions.

Lowry: In your time at the South Kent School, what have been your academic strengths?
Ryczek: South Kent has really helped me academically. They have taught me better study habits and to manage my time with a busy hockey schedule. I would have to say math is my strongest subject but I also enjoy history.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

UNH Recruits Update: April-8-2014

2014 Commit Dylan Chanter
2015 Recruit Danny Tirone


Co-Players of the Week - Dylan Chanter & Danny Tirone

It's playoff time for two of the top amateur, junior hockey leagues in North America - the United States Hockey League and British Columbia Hockey League. The BCHL just completed the round-robin semifinal series and the first round of the USHL Playoffs begins on Friday. The "Co-Players of the Week", among all UNH Recruits, have been chosen for the key roles they played in their team's success. Dylan Chanter helped the Vernon Vipers advance to the BCHL Championship Round and Danny Tirone backstopped the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders' return to the USHL Playoffs.

Dylan Chanter

For 18-year-old defenseman Dylan Chanter, it's been a long season of ups and downs. It began with optimism as he left the Merritt Centennials of the BCHL to play for the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the USHL. In July, he told the blog that:
"The primary reasons behind my decision were development, change, and continuing to push the envelope. I felt that Dubuque was going to be a good place to further develop myself as a hockey player with NHL caliber coaching with Matt Shaw as well as a winning attitude."
Then, in just the fifth game of the season, Chanter was the prime figure in a frightening incident that sparked a national debate on the role of fighting in junior hockey. In the midst of a fight with Corey Petrash of the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders, Chanter's helmet came off, he fell backward, hit the back of his head on the ice, and had a seizure lasting two minutes.

To the great relief of the Chanter family and fans of junior hockey, Dylan did not suffer long-term effects from the head trauma. He returned to the Dubuque lineup four weeks later and played 13 more games. Over the holiday break, Chanter decided to return to his native British Columbia to finish out the season in the BCHL. He joined the Vernon Vipers who will host the prestigious RBC Cup in May. The Vipers qualified for the BCHL Playoffs, won the first two rounds against opponents from the Interior Division, and advanced to the semifinals.

In the first game of the round-robin series, the Vipers faced the Victoria Grizzlies, winners of the Island Division Playoffs. Vernon scored 5 goals in the second period and hung on to win 5-4. Chanter helped set up the game-winning goal. Next up was the Mainland Division champs Coquitlam Express. In the first period, Chanter scored what turned out to be the game-winner with an assist from fellow UNH recruit Michael McNicholas. Despite the loss to Vernon, Coquitlam advanced to the BCHL Championship Round by defeating Victoria twice.

As the Vipers prepare for the Championship series against the Express, which begins on Friday, Dylan Chanter received some good news. The NHL Central Scouting Service released its 2014 Final Rankings this morning and Chanter was identified as the #164 North American skater. Dylan had not appeared on any of the CSS's previous lists of NHL prospects. He is eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft this June. Last November, Chanter signed his National Letter of Intent to enroll at UNH next fall and play for the Wildcats.

Danny Tirone

19-year-old goaltender Danny Tirone is having one heck of a rookie season in the USHL. The Cedar Rapids RoughRiders just completed the regular season in 2nd place in the Eastern Conference and Tirone played in 44 of their 60 games - the third most games of any USHL goalie. With a record of 26 wins and 13 loses, Tirone had the 5th best Save Percentage in the league (.917) and 8th best Goals Against Average (2.63).

Down the stretch, Tirone won 6 of his last 9 games including a 3-1 game against Dubuque which clinched a playoff berth. On the next to last weekend of the regular season, Tirone lead the RoughRiders to 4-3 and 4-1 victories and was named the USHL Goaltender of the Week.

Cedar Rapids entered the final regular season game against Waterloo last Saturday knowing they had already secured home-ice advantage in the playoffs. The Black Hawks, on the other hand, were trying to win the Anderson Cup awarded to the USHL team with the best record. The teams battled to a 2-2 tie in regulation and Tirone made 41 saves. He stopped an additional 10 shots on goal in the overtime period. In the shootout, the first 8 RoughRiders and Black Hawks did not score. Finally, the 9th shootout attempt got past Tirone. In all, he stopped 51 of the 54 shots on goal he faced in the very long game. Danny Tirone is on target to come to UNH in the Fall of 2015.

NOTE
The statistics for the recruits, presented in the table, are categorized by the year the player and UNH coaches have targeted for enrollment in UNH. For example, the "2014 Recruits" have a target of the Fall of 2014 to begin playing for UNH.

Player Team League GP Goals Asst Pts PIM
2014 Recruits
Dylan Chanter  (D) Vernon Vipers BCHL 19 0 0 0 16
Playoffs BCHL 15 3 3 6 14
Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 14 1 1 2 21
Adam Clark  (G) Salmon Arm SilverBacks BCHL 30 14W 14L 2.87 .911
Shane Eiserman  (F) Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 53 16 24 40 71
Warren Foegele  (F) St. Andrews College CISAA 14 17 6 23 15
Playoffs CISAA 5 5 4 9 10
St. Andrews College MPHL 13 12 17 29 14
Playoffs MPHL 3 6 5 11 2
John Furgele  (D) Jersey Hitmen USPHL 44 8 29 37 16
Playoffs USPHL 6 0 5 5 0
Cameron Marks  (D) Coquitlam Express BCHL 57 4 24 28 12
Playoffs BCHL 15 0 5 5 4
Michael McNicholas  (F) Vernon Vipers BCHL 56 23 46 69 20
Playoffs BCHL 15 5 10 15 6
Andrew Poturalski  (F) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 60 27 37 64 28
Jason Salvaggio  (F) Indiana Ice USHL 52 15 11 26 39
2015 Recruits
Rich Boyd  (D) Cushing Academy NEPSHC 31 10 30 40 -
Elite 8 NEPSHC 1 0 0 0 -
Jason Kalinowski  (F) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 57 8 23 31 64
Charlie Kelleher  (F) Junior Bruins 18U USPHL 18U 22 4 11 15 2
Playoffs USPHL 18U 2 1 2 3 0
Junior Bruins Premiere USPHL Premiere 2 2 2 4 0
Joseph Masonius  (D) USA U17 Team USHL 22 0 2 2 32
Chris Miller  (F) Junior Bruins USPHL 31 5 10 15 10
Playoffs USPHL 6 1 0 1 2
Nationals USA 5 3 1 4 2
Danny Tirone  (G) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 44 26W 13L 2.63 .917
Marcus Vela  (F) Langley Rivermen BCHL 54 11 11 22 41
Playoffs BCHL 12 1 4 5 6
2015 or '16 Recruits
Liam Darcy  (D) Berwick Academy NEPSHC 19 6 17 23 -
Patrick Grasso  (F) Des Moines Bucs USHL 59 9 15 24 11
Aaron O'Neill  (F) Green Bay Gamblers USHL 32 1 1 2 4
Ara Nazarian  (F) Malden Catholic Mass HS 20 20 27 47 -
Super 8 Mass HS 4 1 8 9 -
Nick Nonis  (D) Governor's Academy NEPSHC 26 6 1 7 -
Brendan van Riemsdyk   (F) Jersey Hitmen 18U USPHL 18U 8 5 8 13 2
Playoffs USPHL 18U 3 0 1 1 12
Christian Brothers Jersey Prep 12 17 13 30 -
Playoffs Jersey Prep 3 2 5 7 -
2016 Recruits
Joey Cipollone  (F) Selects Academy 16U USPHL 16U 27 14 25 39 38
Playoffs USPHL 16U 3 3 3 6 0
Nationals USA 3 2 2 4 2
Justin Fregona  (F) St. Andrews College CISAA 15 7 6 13 24
Playoffs CISAA 5 4 1 5 8
St. Andrews College MPHL 13 9 12 21 16
Playoffs MPHL 3 3 4 7 6

News & Notes

2014 NHL Draft:

~ The NHL Central Scouting Service just released its Final Rankings of prospects for the NHL Draft this June in Philadelphia. Three of the 2014 UNH Recruits were on the list of 210 top North American skaters.

Shane Eiserman - #45 (#39 on Midterm Rankings)
Warren Foegele - #66 (#62 on Midterm Rankings)
Dylan Chanter - #164 (Not on Midterm Rankings)

United States Hockey League:

~ As mentioned above, the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders finished in 2nd place in the Eastern Conference and will have home-ice advantage in the first round of the USHL Playoffs. Over the final 9 games of the regular season, 2014 UNH recruit Andrew Poturalski, scored 10 goals and 6 assists. For the season, Poturalski was the team's leading scorer with 27 goals and 37 assists. His 64 points placed him in a tie for 6th in USHL scoring and he was the 6th leading goal scorer. The last UNH players to score at this level in the USHL were Jacob Micflikier in the 2002-03 season (31 goals, 67 points) and Phil DeSimone in 2006-07 (26 goals, 73 points). The final game of the regular season - the loss to Waterloo in which fellow UNH recruit Danny Tirone made 51 saves - was Poturalski's 115th USHL game. Andrew's goal in the second period was the 100th point of his USHL career.

~ 2014 commit Shane Eiserman and the Dubuque Fighting Saints finished 3rd in the Eastern Conference and will play Cedar Rapids in the best-of-5 opening round of the playoffs. Eiserman was the 4th leading scorer on the Dubuque squad with 16 goals and 24 assists. Two of his goals were game-winners and he had the best +/- rating on the team (+18). Eiserman signed his National Letter of Intent last November.

~ 2014 recruit Jason Salvaggio and the Indiana Ice finished in first place in the Eastern Conference. In his first full season in the USHL, Salvaggio scored 15 goals, including 4 game-winners, and added 11 assists. The Ice will face UNH recruit Aaron O'Neill and the Green Bay Gamblers in the first round of the playoffs.

~ 2015 or '16 recruit Patrick Grasso came up big in the next to last game of the Des Moines Buccaneers' season. Grasso fired 5 shots on goal, scored the game-winning goal, and earned the #2 Star. In his first full season in the USHL, the 17-year-old Grasso posted 9 goals and 15 assists and was the Bucs' 5th leading scorer. Des Moines did not make the USHL Playoffs.

British Columbia Hockey League:

~ As I described above, the Vernon Vipers defeated the Victoria Grizzlies and Coquitlam Express in the BCHL Semifinal round. In the 6-1 victory over Coquitlam, 2014 recruit Michael McNicholas scored the Vipers' 4th goal and assisted on the game-winner. So far in the playoffs, McNicholas is tied for 6th in scoring (15 points) and tied for 4th in assists (10).

~ 2014 recruit Cameron Marks and the Coquitlam Express will face the Vernon Vipers in the best-of-7 Championship Round beginning this Friday. Marks, who turns 19 tomorrow, is in his second BCHL season. The defenseman has 5 assists so far in the playoffs.

USA Hockey National Championships:

~ Joey Cipollone - UNH's newest recruit - and the Selects Hockey Academy/South Kent School U16 team travelled to Green Bay, Wisconsin for the U16 National Championship last week. The team, also called the Central Connecticut Capitals, split the first two games in the opening round, pool play. In the all-important third game against the Buffalo Regals, Cipollone set up the go-ahead goal midway through the third period with a pretty cross-slot pass to Alexandre Limoges. The Regals tied the score with less than 3 minutes in regulation. Neither team scored in the overtime period. Buffalo won the shootout ending the Selects Academy's quest for the National Championship.

~ 2015 recruit Chris Miller and the Junior Bruins Premiere team travelled to Simsbury, CT for the USA Hockey Tier III National Championships. The Jr. Bruins won all 5 games on their way to the Championship and Miller scored 3 goals and an assist.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Joey Cipollone Commits to UNH

17-year-old Forward Joey Cipollone


It's been a month of milestones for Joey Cipollone (pronounced Sip-ih-LOAN) of the South Kent School (Connecticut) and Selects Hockey Academy team. The first came in early March at the United States Premiere Hockey League U16 Playoffs held at Merrimack College. Cipollone, a 5'9", 155 lbs. forward, and his Selects Hockey Academy teammates finished the USPHL U16 regular season in first place with a perfect record of 29-0-0. Cipollone was the team's second leading scorer with 14 goals and 25 assists. He was selected to the USPHL U16 All-Star team in January.

In the USPHL Playoffs, the Cardinals maintained their perfect season, winning all three games including the 5-3 victory over the Jersey Hitmen in the Championship Game. Cipollone scored the Selects' first goal and assisted on the game-winner. Overall, his three goals in three playoff games tied him for the USPHL lead and he was tied for 2nd in scoring with 6 points.

Last Saturday was another memorable day for Joey Cipollone. On his 17th birthday, he accepted a verbal offer from the University of New Hampshire with the goal of enrolling in the Fall of 2016 and playing for the Wildcats in the 2016-17 season. Cipollone becomes the fourth South Kent alum to have committed to UNH. Graduating senior forward Jeff Silengo and former goalie Tyler Scott played at South Kent. Also, 2014 recruit Jason Salvaggio was the Alternate Captain on the 2012-13 Selects Hockey Academy U18 team. Other notable alumni of the South Kent School are Hobey Baker top-10 finalist Shayne Gostisbehere, a junior at Union College and 3rd Round draft pick of the Philadelphia Flyers and Anthony Florentino, a freshman at Providence College and 5th Round pick of the Buffalo Sabres.

Winning your league championship, having a birthday, and accepting a scholarship offer to play college hockey. That's an impressive list of accomplishments for one month. But Joey Cipollone isn't done yet. He and his Selects U16 teammates have just arrived in Green Bay, Wisconsin to compete in the USA Hockey Tier I National Championships. Last November, the South Kent School's U16 Team earned a berth in the National Championship by winning the New England Regional Championship. They downed the rival Connecticut Wolfpack in overtime.

This is Joey Cipollone's second year playing for the Selects Hockey Academy U16 team. In the 2011-12 season, Cipollone, who is from Purchase, New York, played for the Connecticut Wolfpack Bantam Major team. In 40 regular season games, he scored 35 goals and 36 assists and was selected to the Atlantic Youth Hockey League All-Star Team. Interestingly, 2015 UNH Recruit Joseph Masonius also played in that All-Star Game representing the New Jersey Rockets.

I had an opportunity to interview Joey, via email, about his background, commitment to UNH, and future plans:

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?
Joey Cipollone: Thank you, it is definitely an exciting time right now for both my family and me. Deciding to commit to a school is a significant decision, but the University of New Hampshire gave me countless reasons to trust this is the right choice for me and will be a great fit.
The main reason I chose UNH is because it will offer me many opportunities to succeed, not just on the ice, but in the classroom as well. The hockey program, with its countless accomplishments, speaks for itself. And, the style of the UNH hockey team as a whole will fit my game perfectly.

Mike Lowry: What other college programs were you considering?
Joey Cipollone: Over the past year I visited several schools, but my decision ultimately came down to UNH and Providence College. I'm confident this coaching staff and program will take my game to the next level, and know that I will be getting a great education at the same time.

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?
Cipollone: Yes, right now the plan is for me to play one year of junior hockey after my senior year, and then enroll for the fall of 2016.

Lowry: You just completed a very successful season with the Selects Academy winning the USPHL 16U Championship. At this stage in your hockey development, what are the strengths of your game? What areas are you trying to improve?
Cipollone: I think one of my strong points is my ability to see the ice and create plays. I try to think the game when I'm out there but I also think I play well below the goal line. An area that I put continuous effort and work into is my skating. Being one of the smaller players, I need to have the speed and strength to get around guys bigger than me. This summer I'm planning on making huge strides in this area.

Lowry: Your Selects Academy U16 team won the New England Regional Championship last November and is set to compete for the USA Hockey National Championship in Green Bay, Wisconsin later this week. What does it mean to compete in and possibly win the U16 National Championship?
Cipollone: The last time a moment as big as this occurred for me was when I was playing in the 2010 Nationals in Buffalo as a member of the Westchester Express hockey program. We ended up losing in the semifinal game, which was somewhat disappointing giving the great amount of effort our team put forth.
I am so excited and grateful to have yet another opportunity at winning a national championship. It means a lot to our team to make it to nationals, but we're not satisfied with just that. We're going out strong to win the whole thing, and I know I speak for the whole team when I say that anything less will be a great disappointment.

Lowry: Do you plan on returning to Selects Academy to play next season?
Cipollone: As of right now, I have no future plans of leaving Selects Academy. It is a great place to develop as a player and receive a strong education as well.

Lowry: Do you anticipate playing junior hockey before coming to UNH? If so, what leagues would you consider playing in?
Cipollone: That is the plan for me in the future. One year of junior hockey will be a great way to prepare and develop before I head to UNH. The two leagues that I would consider are the USHL and the BCHL.

Lowry: In your time at the South Kent School, what have been your academic strengths?
Cipollone: My biggest academic strength is my work ethic. Even when an assignment is difficult, I put all of my energy into working hard to complete it well. Throughout my whole life though, math always came easily to me and is the subject I enjoy.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

UNH Recruits Update: March-25-2014

2014 UNH Wildcat
Michael McNicholas

Player of the Week - Michael McNicholas

In the just completed 2013-14 UNH season, the four senior forwards - Kevin Goumas, Nick Sorkin, Jeff Silengo, and Dalton Speelman - scored a total of 54 goals and 71 assists. That's a hefty amount of offensive output that will need to be replaced. Fortunately, the 2014 recruiting class includes several high-scoring forwards who could help fill the gap as freshmen next season. 20-year-old Michael McNicholas is one of them.

#11 Michael McNicholas
In his final season with the Vernon Vipers of the BCHL, McNicholas has proven to be a high quantity and high quality scorer. McNicholas was the 5th highest scorer (69 points) in the BCHL regular season and was tied for third in assists (46 assists). Three of his 23 goals were game-winners. In the Vipers' quest to win the Fred Page Cup in the BCHL Playoffs, McNicholas is stepping up again.

Vernon eliminated the West Kelowna Warriors in the opening round of the Playoffs and faced the Penticton Vees in the second round. After the Vipers fell behind the Vees two games to one in the best-of-seven series, McNicholas lead the team to a series win. In Game 4 last Tuesday night, fellow UNH Recruit Dylan Chanter set up McNicholas for the game-winning goal.

The Vipers won a tightly-contested Game 5 last Thursday. McNicholas tied the game 1-1 on a first period goal. After Vernon fell behind 2-1, McNicholas assisted on the game-tying and game-winning goals. The Vees tied the series 3-3 on Friday night setting up an exciting Game 7.

Penticton lead Vernon 3-1 entering the final period of Game 7. McNicholas helped the Vipers draw to within a goal by setting up Colton Sparrow with a precise cross-slot pass:



At the end of regulation, Vernon and Penticton were tied 3-3. Just over two minutes into overtime, Michael McNicholas one-timed an errant clearing effort past the Vees goalie. Scoring a game-winning goal in overtime of a Game 7 is a rare achievement:



For his accomplishments in the playoff series, McNicholas was named the BCHL Player of the Week. It was the second time this season he has earned the honor. With their victory, the Vipers have advanced to the BCHL Semifinals - a Round Robin series with the Coquitlam Express and Victoria Grizzlies.

NOTE
The statistics for the recruits, presented in the table, are categorized by the year the player and UNH coaches have targeted for enrollment in UNH. For example, the "2014 Recruits" have a target of the Fall of 2014 to begin playing for UNH.

Player Team League GP Goals Asst Pts PIM
2014 Recruits
Dylan Chanter  (D) Vernon Vipers BCHL 19 0 0 0 16
Playoffs BCHL 13 2 2 4 10
Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 14 1 1 2 21
Adam Clark  (G) Salmon Arm SilverBacks BCHL 30 14W 14L 2.87 .911
Shane Eiserman  (F) Dubuque Fighting Saints USHL 48 14 23 37 71
Warren Foegele  (F) St. Andrews College CISAA 14 17 6 23 15
Playoffs CISAA 5 5 4 9 10
St. Andrews College MPHL 13 12 17 29 14
Playoffs MPHL 3 6 5 11 2
John Furgele  (D) Jersey Hitmen USPHL 44 8 29 37 16
Playoffs USPHL 6 0 5 5 0
Cameron Marks  (D) Coquitlam Express BCHL 57 4 24 28 12
Playoffs BCHL 12 0 5 5 2
Michael McNicholas  (F) Vernon Vipers BCHL 56 23 46 69 20
Playoffs BCHL 13 4 9 13 6
Andrew Poturalski  (F) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 56 24 34 58 20
Jason Salvaggio  (F) Indiana Ice USHL 47 14 10 24 33
2015 Recruits
Rich Boyd  (D) Cushing Academy NEPSHC 31 10 30 40 -
Elite 8 NEPSHC 1 0 0 0 -
Jason Kalinowski  (F) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 53 7 22 29 62
Charlie Kelleher  (F) Junior Bruins 18U USPHL 18U 22 4 11 15 2
Playoffs USPHL 18U 2 1 2 3 0
Junior Bruins Premiere USPHL Premiere 2 2 2 4 0
Joseph Masonius  (D) USA U17 Team USHL 19 0 1 1 26
Chris Miller  (F) Junior Bruins USPHL 31 5 10 15 10
Playoffs USPHL 6 1 0 1 2
Danny Tirone  (G) Cedar Rapids RoughRiders USHL 40 24W 12L 2.64 .916
Marcus Vela  (F) Langley Rivermen BCHL 54 11 11 22 41
Playoffs BCHL 12 1 4 5 6
2015 or '16 Recruits
Liam Darcy  (D) Berwick Academy NEPSHC 19 6 17 23 -
Patrick Grasso  (F) Des Moines Bucs USHL 54 8 13 21 9
Aaron O'Neill  (F) Green Bay Gamblers USHL 31 1 1 2 4
Ara Nazarian  (F) Malden Catholic Mass HS 20 20 27 47 -
Super 8 Mass HS 4 1 8 9 -
Nick Nonis  (D) Governor's Academy NEPSHC 26 6 1 7 -
Brendan van Riemsdyk   (F) Jersey Hitmen 18U USPHL 18U 8 5 8 13 2
Playoffs USPHL 18U 3 0 1 1 12
Christian Brothers Jersey Prep 12 17 13 30 -
Playoffs Jersey Prep 3 2 5 7 -
2016 Recruits
Justin Fregona  (F) St. Andrews College CISAA 15 7 6 13 24
Playoffs CISAA 5 4 1 5 8
St. Andrews College MPHL 13 9 12 21 16
Playoffs MPHL 3 3 4 7 6

News & Notes

British Columbia Hockey League:

~ As I mentioned above, 2014 recruit Dylan Chanter assisted on Michael McNicholas' game-winning goal in Game 4 of the Vernon-Penticton playoff series. Tyler Lowey of the Vernon Morning Star described it as "a gorgeous Sedin-like slap-pass". Lowey also described one of defenseman Chanter's body-checks from earlier in the period:
"Dylan Chanter delivered the biggest hit of the night. Serratore got caught with his head down in the neutral zone. Chanter stepped up and obliterated him. That crushing blow energized a mellow Viper crowd."
The 6'3", 213 lbs. Chanter has scored 2 goals and 2 assists in the BCHL playoffs so far.

~ 2014 recruit Cameron Marks and the Coquitlam Express eliminated Marcus Vela and the Langley Rivermen from the BCHL Playoffs last Friday night. In the 5-3 victory in Game 6, Marks assisted on two goals including the game-winner. The 6'0", 175 lbs. defenseman has tallied 5 playoff assists.

~ 17-year-old Marcus Vela, a 2015 recruit, finished his first ever BCHL playoffs with a goal and 4 assists in 12 games.

United States Hockey League:

~ Andrew Poturalski is another one of the high-scoring forwards coming to UNH next fall. Last week, he continued his torrid scoring pace and helped the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders clinch a berth in the USHL Playoffs. Over the last 5 games, Poturalski has scored 7 goals and 3 assists.

Last Wednesday, Poturalski scored two goals, including the game-winner, and added an assist in the 7-3 win over the Chicago Steel. On Saturday night, the RoughRiders clinched a playoff berth by downing the Dubuque Fighting Saints 3-1. Poturalski scored Cedar Rapids' 3rd goal and assisted on the game-winning goal. With 4 games remaining in the regular season, Poturalski is tied for 5th in USHL scoring (58 points) and tied for 6th in goals (24).

~ Cedar Rapids goalie Danny Tirone has been a key to the RoughRiders' success. He has won 24 games overall and 4 out of his last 5 games down the stretch run. Tirone is on target to come to UNH in the Fall of 2015.

~ Another productive forward coming to UNH next season is Shane Eiserman. On Sunday night, Eiserman assisted on the Dubuque Fighting Saints' game-winning goal against the Fargo Force. The 2-1 victory clinched a playoff berth for the Saints.

~ 2015 or '16 recruit Aaron O'Neill scored his first USHL goal Saturday night as the Green Bay Gamblers topped the Tri-City Storm 5-2. O'Neill appeared to score a second goal at the end of the first period but the clock had just barely run out. Green Bay is battling the Muskegon Lumberjacks for the 4th and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference of the USHL. With 5 games remaining, the two teams are tied.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

UNH Hockey Competes Until the End

Justin Agosta
Kevin Goumas
Eric Knodel
Jeff Silengo
Nick Sorkin
Dalton Speelman
Jeff Wyer


BOSTON, MA - After the seniors left the ice for the last time as UNH Wildcats, Head Coach Dick Umile conveyed what the UNH Hockey community knew to be true:
“I thought our team competed, and played hard. It just didn’t happen. The difficult part is it’s a team with great chemistry. We wanted to keep going. Not only were they winning and playing hard, but we were enjoying it and having fun doing it. It’s tough for the season to end.”
That chemistry and "never say die" compete level were instilled in the 2013-14 UNH team under the leadership of the its 7 seniors. Each raised their on-ice production in their final season to new levels:

Justin Agosta - 6 goals, 20 assists. (Previous Best: 14 points as a Junior)
Kevin Goumas - 19 goals, 33 assists. (Previous Best: 42 points as a Junior)
Eric Knodel - 7 goals, 22 assists. (21 points as a Junior)
Jeff Silengo - 8 goals, 7 assists. (10 pts as Junior)
Nick Sorkin - 20 goals, 20 assists. (35 pts as Sophomore)
Dalton Speelman - 7 goals, 11 assists. (16 pts as Sophomore)
Jeff Wyer - 7 games, 2.80 Goals Against Average, .887 Save%. (Previous Best: 4 games as a Junior)

The stories you may read about UMass-Lowell downing UNH 4-0 and winning their second consecutive Hockey East Championship will highlight the River Hawks' clamp-down defense and superb goal-tending by Connor Hellebuyck. And rightfully so. UNH generated some quality scoring opportunities but could not get one past Hellebuyck.

Here's a couple of UNH's best bids from the first period. The first shows one of Hockey East's top forward lines - Sorkin-Goumas-Willows - generating a couple chances. The second shows freshman Tyler Kelleher and senior Dalton Speelman breaking in on Hellebuyck ahead of the Lowell defenders. In each case, as in all other attempts, the River Hawks smothered the opportunity.





With UMass-Lowell ahead 4-0 after two periods, the energy level among the large pockets of UNH fans in the TD Garden was understandably subdued. To their credit, UNH competed hard in the final stanza, battling for pucks, backchecking, and entering the Lowell zone with speed. All of the seniors, including Jeff Wyer in goal in the final minutes, lead the way, logging major minutes.

In the waning minutes, the Nick Sorkin-Kevin Goumas-Matt Willows line would make one final attempt, but it was not to be.



The 7 UNH seniors, as players and people, will be missed. Replacing their production will be challenging for the 2014-15 team. But hope, at varying levels, springs eternal. Veterans will step up and a talented crop of freshmen will fill in. This season went by in a flash. So will the off-season.

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