It will be a quiet week in Ann Arbor, Michigan, as the U.S. National Under-17 Team heads back out on the road for a fourth straight week to face a pair of United States Hockey League teams while the Under-18 Team has a bye week as it begin preparations for the Under-18 World Championship.
BACK ON THE ROAD: The U17s continues their road trip with two different opponents on back-to-back nights. On Friday, the U17s head to Muskegon to face the Lumberjacks. On Saturday, the squad will be in Besenville, Illinois, to face the Chicago Steel.
The U17s dropped a pair of road games at Sioux City this weekend, falling 6-1 on Friday and 4-1 on Saturday.
Joey Anderson (Roseville, Minn.) tallied the lone goal while Joseph Woll (Dardenne Prairie, Mo.) kicked out 28 shots in game one. For a second straight night, Anderson tallied the lone goal while Jake Oettinger (Lakeville, Minn.) stopped 41 shots.
OFF WEEK: The U18s will enjoy a bye this week as they begin final preparations for the season-ending 2015 IIHF Under-18 World Championship in Switzerland.
“It will be good to get some work on the ice this week before our players get a chance to go home next weekend and spend some time with their family before coming back here,” head coach Don Granato said. “Obviously, there are still things we want to work on before the world championship. Our goal is to have our players playing some of their best hockey as we begin making final preparations to head to Switzerland.”
The U18s split a pair of home games this weekend, beating Chicago 8-2 on Friday before losing 3-2 in a shootout to Muskegon on Saturday.
Jack Roslovic (Columbus, Ohio) and Troy Terry (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) each scored a pair of goals while Jordan Greenway (Potsdam, N.Y.), Auston Matthews (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Clayton Keller (Swansea, Ill.) and Christian Fischer (Wayne, Ill.) scored once against Chicago. Goalie Michael Lackey (Washington, D.C.) stopped 16 of 18 shots to earn the win.
Former National Team Development Program and current Los Angeles Kings forward Nick Shore (Denver, Colo./2008-10) tallied his first NHL goal on March 26 in a 3-2 win over the New York Islanders.
Following a four-year career at the University of Vermont, former NTDP defenseman Michael Paliotta (Westport, Conn./2009-11) signed a two-year NHL entry-level contact with the Chicago Blackhawks. The Blackhawks selected him in the third round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.
Forward Andrew Copp (Ann Arbor, Mich./2010-12/Michigan) signed a three-year NHL entry-level contract with the Winnipeg Jets, who drafted him in the fourth round of the 2013 NHL Draft.
Auston Matthews and Chad Krys (Ridgewood, Conn.) picked up weekly USHL honors last week. Matthews earned Forward of the Week after totaling three goals and six points in a two contests against Lincoln. Meanwhile, Krys was the co-Defenseman of the Week after registering one goal and four points and a plus-7 rating against Lincoln.
U17 assistant coach John Gruden was named the head coach of the Flint Firebirds, a new Ontario Hockey League team, on March 26. Gruden spent four seasons with the NTDP.
Former NTDP assistant coach Matt Greason, now the head coach at Trinity College in Connecticut, won the NCAA Division III championship on Saturday as the Bantams posted a 5-2 win over University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. It marked the first title for Trinity.
Team USA has combined for a 24-29-3 (W-L-OTL) mark in USHL play this season.
The U17s carry an 18-31-2 mark into this week’s action.
The U17s are paced by Clayton Keller (25-34) with 59 points. Joey Anderson (19-18) ranks second with 37 points while Chad Krys (3-26) is third with 29 points. Nick Pastujov (Bradenton, Fla./13-15) sits fourth with 28 points and Patrick Khodorenko (Walnut Creek, Calif./7-19) is fifth with 26 points.
In goal for the U17s, Joseph Woll and Jake Oettinger share duties. Woll is 9-17 with a 3.46 goals-against average and an .886 save percentage while Oettinger is 9-13-2 with a 2.67 GAA and a .913 save percentage.
The U18s closed out the regular season with a 41-11-3-2 (W-L-OTL-T) mark.
Auston Matthews (44-50) paces the U18s with 94 points. Matthew Tkachuk (St. Louis, Mo./34-46) is second with 80 points while Jeremy Bracco (Freeport, N.Y./26-49) is third with 75 points. Rounding out the top five are Jack Roslovic (21-46) and Christian Fischer (28-25) with 67 and 53 points, respectively.
In goal for the U18s, Michael Lackey and Luke Opilka have shared time. Opilka is 24-5-2 with a 2.74 GAA and an .887 save percentage while Lackey is 15-6-1-2 with a 2.70 GAA and an .888 save percentage.
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.
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