3/14-3/20 Prospect Week in Review + Playoff Preview
Time again for the prospect week in review this week was the last week of the CHL’s regular season so we’ll be previewing the playoffs plusthe NCAA Tournament field was announced and 7 CBJ propsects will be taking part. First up the Springfield Falcons, the Falcons continued there massive fall going 0-4 adding to there 0-10-1 slide. The only player with Multiple points was Ben Guite with a goal and 2 assists. David LeNeveu and Gustaf Wesslau both had rough weeks, LeNeveu went 0-3 and Wesslau went 0-1 and in his loss Wesslau made it just over 4 minutes into the game not stopping any of the 2 shots he faced. A quick AHL rookie scoring race update Tomas Kubalik is tied for 4th among rookies trailing leader Luke Adam by 8 points while playing in 24 moregames. Michael Ratchuk continued his strong play with the Kometsas the team went 2-1-1 this week with Ratchuk scoring his first goal with the Komets, Ratchuk had a goal and a assist this week and has 11 points in 18 games and is a +3 with Fort Wayne.
Before I start talking about the team’s CHL prospects I have to make a quick retraction, last week I said Oliver Gabriel had returned to the Winterhawks lineup well either the WHL’s site screwed up the gamesheet or I read it wrong. Gabriel is still out missing the Winterhawks last 27 games while setting career highs in goals, assists and points before his shoulder injury he should be ready for training camp next year turning pro. Austin Madaisky missed the Kamloops Blazer’s last 17 games with a injury, Madaisky tied his career high from last season when he split time between the Blazers and Calgary Hitmen. Madiasky had 27 points which was 10th on the team and 2nd among defensemen, the Blazers missed the playoffs this year. Madaisky won the Eldon Bever Award for the team’s top defenseman. If the Blazers would of made the playoffs they would of played the WHL’s U.S. Division and Western Conference regular season champs the Portland Winterhawks. Ryan Johansen had 7 points last week picking up 3 goals and 4 assists finishing the regular season on a 11 game point streak picking up 22 in that span(7-15-22). Johansen’s 92 points led the Winterhawks in scoring and was good for 7th in the league while being 15thin both goals(40) and assists(52). Johansen was a +44 on the year which was 7th in the league and scored 31 points on the power play, Portland will play the Everett Silvertips in the 1st round of the playoffs who Johansen brutalized scoring14 points in 10 games with 4 being multi point games.
In the QMJHL all 3 Blue Jackets prospects made the playoffs(kind of easy when 16 of the 18 teams make it) but anyway the Saint John Sea Dogs won the league going 58-7-1-2 including going 32-0-1-1 at home the 58 wins ties a Q record set in the 70′s. Mathieu Corbeil played in 1 game last week stopping 27 of 29 shots to earn his 13th win with the Dogs and 20th overall. What a difference a trade can make while playing for the bottom feeding Halifax Mooseheads Corbeil was 7-15-0-1 with a GAA of almost 4. Since being traded to the juggernaut known as the Sea Dogs Corbeil is 13-1-1-0 with a GAA just a bit over 2, overall Corbeil rates in the top 20 in most goaltending stats including 6th in shootout wins. Now I asked a writer from Saint John earlier this year he thinks Coach Gerard Gallant will go with Jacob DeSerres in the playoffs. Saint John will play the 16 seed Cape Breton Screaming Eagles in the 1st round, in 4 games this year Corbeil went 1-2 this year with the win coming with Saint John. Petr Straka had no points as the Oceanic went 1-2 last week with Straka scoring no points and being a -2. Straka was 9th on the team with 25 points a considerable drop from his 64 points last year but he did miss games with injuries and attending Blue Jackets training camp. The Oceanic are the 12th seed and will play the Gatineau Olympiques, Straka had a assist in 2 games against Gatineau this year. Michalel Chaput had 2 goals and a assist last week and was a +2, Chaput finished the year with 59 points setting a new high in assists. Chaput was 2nd on the MAINEiacs in most categories and won the 8th most faceoffs in the league winning just over 56%. Lewiston was 8th in the league and will play the Moncton Wildcats in the 8-9 matchup, Chaput had a goal in 2 games against the Wildcats this season.
In the Ontario Hockey League the 2 teams with Blue Jackets prospects both finished 2nd in there conference and won there respective divisions. The Saginaw Spirit claimed its first ever West Division title this season but went 1-1-1 last week. Brandon Archibald had no points last week and only 3 of his 22 after the trade from Sault Ste. Marie, he was 13th on the Spirit and 5th among defensemen. Dalton Prout had a goal and a assist in the team’s overtime loss to division runner up Windsor and was named 3rd star. Prout tied his career high playing with the Barrie Colts then added 10 more playing withthe Spirit serving as a assistant captain. The 31 points was 3rd among Spirit Dmen and 29th in the league while his 101 penalty minutes were fourthon the team. The Spirit will play the Guelph Storm in the 1st round, Archibald was the only prospect to play the Storm scoring a goal while with the Greyhounds. The Ottawa 67′s won the OHL’s East Division for the second straight year, Dalton Smith like Straka took a step back scoring29 points after scoring 44 points last year and had 5 less penalty minutes. His 124 penalty minutes were good for 18th in the league this season, he scored 4 points last week including picking up his 4th career 3 point game. In his 3 point game against Oshawa Smith was named 1st star. Ottawa was 2nd in the OHL’s Eastern Conference behind Memorial Cup host Mississauga and will face the Sudbury Wolves in the first round, in 1 game this year Smith had a assist against the Wolves.
Finally March Madness will begin! the NCAA announced the field for the 2011 NCAA hockey championship, the Blue Jackets have 7 prospects in the field. Minnesota-Duluth lost in its WCHA Final Five Quaterfinal game in overtime to Bemidji St. Drew Olson had no points and was a -1, Olson andthe Bulldogs now travel to Bridgeport, Connecticut to play Union in the 2-3 mathcup in the East Region. Michigan was shocked in its CCHA semifinal by Western Michigan, Kevin Lynch had a assist in that game. The next day the Wolverines took on Notre Dame in the 3rd place game winning with Matt Rust earning his 20th assist of the season. Michigan is off to St. Louis to take on the University of Nebraska-Omaha in the West Region. The Mavericks are coached by ex Blue Jackets assistant coach Dean Blais who was just named coach of Team USA in next year’s World Junior Championships. Miami won it’s first ever Mason Cup for winning the CCHA’s tournament, both Will Weber and Trent Vogelhuber had no points in the team’s semifinal win over Notre Dame. Vogelhuber had a assist in the team’s win over Western Michigan and was a +2. Weber was a +2 against the Irish but was even in the championship, he was also nominated for the CCHA’s best defensive defenseman but lost after winning it last year. Weber was 1 of 4 Redhawks to be named to the All Tournament team. See if this sounds fair Miami is the top seed in the Northeast region they will travel to Manchester, New Hampshire to play… New Hampshire, so the 13th seed in the whole tournament gets a home game against the 4 seed.
Thomas Larkin and Colgate had it surprising run end as it went up against Yale in the ECAC semifinals losing 4-0. Larkin had a assist in the team’s loss to Dartmouth in the 3rd place game, Larkin had 11 points in 41 games this season with 41 penalty minutes. Ill be honest im not alone in thinking Colgate probably played 6 more games than they thought they would. The Red Raiders were bad during the regular season only winning 4 conference games they had to do that just to make it to the semifinals. Larkin was 9th on the team in scoring and 2nd among defensemen, Larkin will return for his junior season. Sean Collins had a assist in Cornell’s semifinal win ove Dartmouth but then had the same problem the Red Raiders had they ran into the buzzsaw know as Yale. Yale has won it’s last 3 games by a combined score of 14-0, Collins obviously had no points against the Bulldogs. Collins set a career high with 15 points on the year which was 8th on the team, Collins will return for his senior season and is 3rd among returning players. 5 of Collin’s 7 goals were scored on special teams. Cam Atkinson had no points in the Eagle’s semifinal win over Northeastern but after going pointless in 2 games(his longest streak of the year) he decided to take it out on the Merrimack Warriors. Atkinson had 5 points against Merrimack in 3 games this season and continued that in the Hockey East Championship game, Atkinson scored 2 goals in the 3rd period and added a assist to earn tournament MVP and be named to the All Tournament team. The 2 goals give Atkinson 30 for the second straight year which is 2nd behind North Dakota star Matt Frattin who has 35. BC is off to St. Louis as the top seed in the West Regional where they will play Colorado College, with a win they could play Michigan if the Wolverines defeat UNO. Last but not least is a prospect we haven’t talked about in a few weeks, after losing in the ECAC’s first round Allen York and RPI qualified for the NCAA tournament. York and the Engineers travel to Green Bay, Wisconsin to play the top seed in the west region the North Dakota Fighting Sioux.
There you have it folks next week we’ll know who is in the Frozen Four and probably have at least a few games done in each CHL playoff series. To keep you up to date make sure to follow @CBJProspects.