Photo by Rena Laverty
USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program enters play this weekend with a 33-15-0-2-0 (W-L-OTL-SOL-T) record after the U18s fell to Michigan State (3-0, Dec. 16) and the Muskegon Lumberjacks (Dec. 19) before the holiday break. The U17s went 2-1-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L) in the 2017 Under-17 Four Nations Tournament in Veliky Novgorod Oblast, Russia to capture its second international tournament victory of the season on Saturday (Dec. 16).
The U18s will play a pair of NCAA matchups this week. They travel to the University of North Dakota on Saturday (Dec. 30) before returning to USA Hockey Arena on Tuesday for its final NCAA DI home matchup of the season against Ferris State University. The U17s return from an 11-day break when they travel to Muskegon on Friday (Dec. 29) before returning to the confines of USA Hockey Arena on Saturday for its first home matchup since Nov. 31. They host the Youngstown Phantoms starting at 7 p.m. ET.
Overall Record: U18: 14-10-0-2 | U17: 19-5-0-0 (W-L-OTL-SOL)
Team USA USHL Record: 10-7-0-0 (W-L-OTL-SOL) with 20 PTS, 7th place in the Eastern Conference
TAKING DOWN THE HAWKS: Saturday’s game will be the final contest of 2017 for the U18s, and will mark the ninth time they have faced the University of North Dakota.
In the last matchup between the two squads, the U.S. National Under-18 Team fell to UND, 4-1 on January 6, James Sanchez (2016-17/University of Michigan) scored the lone goal for the NTDP.
2016 at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks, North Dakota.
NTDP alum Grant Mismash (2015-17) is currently 2nd on UND scoring with 14 points (5-9-14 in 19 GP) on the season. The Nashville Predators draft pick has been named NCHC Rookie of the Week four times so far this season. Senior goaltender, Cam Johnson is ranked 6th in the NCAA in save percentage with a .917 through 12 games played.
Team USA is looking for its first victory against the University of North Dakota after posting a 0-7-1 record in the all-time series. UND has outscored the NTDP 37-16 through the first 8 matchups.
Gavin Hain (Grand Rapids, MN) of the U18s and Judd Caulfield (Grand Forks, ND) of the U17s are the two current NTDP players committed to UND. Former NTDP goaltender Adam Scheel (2015-17, Penticton Vees) is also committed to play hockey for the Fighting Hawks.
Fighting Hawks Top Scorers:
Christian Wolanin (5-11-16 in 20 GP), Grant Mismash (5-9-14 in 19 GP), Nick Jones (6-7-13 in 19 GP).
Fighting Hawks Plus-Minus Leaders:
Colton Poolman (+11), Christian Wolanin (+9), Cole Smith (+8)
Fighting Hawks Goaltenders:
Cam Johnson (7-3-2 in 12 GS, 1.83 GAA, .917 SV%), Peter Thome (3-2-3 in 8 GS, 2.56 GAA, .907 SV%)
All-Time Results vs. University of North Dakota:
December 5, 2003, U18s @ UND (L, 1-4); December 1, 2006, U18s @ UND (OTL, 4-5); December 19, 2008, U18s @ UND (L, 2-5); December 18, 2010, U18s @ UND (L, 1-2); October 12, 2010, U18s @ UND (L, 4-6); October 26, 2013, U18s @ UND (L, 1-4); January 13, 2015, U18s @ UND (L, 2-7); January 9, 2016, U18s @ UND (L, 1-4).
NTDP All-Time Record vs. University of North Dakota:
0-7-1 (W-L-OTL) Home: 0-0-0 Road: 0-7-1
CAGING THE BULLDOGS: The Under-18 Team begins its 2018 campaign with a matchup against Ferris State University on Tuesday, January 2.
The two teams have only played once and that came in 2008 when the NTDP traveled to Ewigleben Arena and fell 0-3. This will be the first time the Bulldogs travel to USA Hockey Arena. The inter-state contest will feature 16 total Michigan natives (Ferris 13, NTDP 3)
Ferris State is led in scoring this season by junior, Corey Mackin (5-12-17 in 20 GP) and senior, Mitch Maloney (12-4-16 in 21 GP), who is tied for 7th in NCAA scoring with 12 goals.
The Bulldogs enter the game looking to bounce back from three straight losses, where they were outscored 15-4.
Bulldogs Top Scorers:
Corey Mackin (5-12-17 in 20 GP), Mitch Maloney (12-4-16 in 21 GP), Andrew Dorantes (5-8-13 in 19 GP).
Bulldogs Plus-Minus Leaders:
Corey Mackin (+7), Andrew Dorantes (+5), and Ryker Killins (+3)
Justin Kapelmaster (6-6-0 in 12 GS, 2.78 GAA, .915 SV%), Darren Smith (3-5-1 in 9 GS, 3.43 GAA, .900 SV%)
All-Time Results vs. Ferris State University:
January 4, 2008, @ Bulldogs (L, 0-3)
NTDP All-Time Record vs. Ferris State University:
0-1-0 (W-L-OTL) Home: 0-0-0 Road: 0-1-0
CHOPPING DOWN THE LUMBERJACKSThe U17s travel to Muskegon to take on the Lumberjacks on Friday. This meeting will be the fourth of eight against the Lumberjacks this season. The NTDP leads the season series 2-1-0-0 (W-L-OTL-SOL).
In the last meeting between the two, the NTDP hosted the Lumberjacks and fell 6-3.
During the 2017-18 season, the U.S. National Under-18 Team will play the Lumberjacks three times while the U.S. National Under -17 Team will face-off against the Lumberjacks five times. The NTDP holds a 26-25-5 all-time record against the Lumberjacks.
Muskegon’s Top Scorers:
Wyatt Bongiovanni (12-10-22 in 23 GP)
Anthony Del Gaizo (13-7-20 in 23 GP)
Matej Pekar (3-17-20 in 23 GP)
Muskegon’s Plus-Minus Leaders:
Adam Brizgala (4-5-1-1 in 13 GP, 3.02 GAA, .892 SV%, 1 SO),
Keegan Karki (6-5-0-0 in 12 GP, 3.08 GAA, .895 SV%)
2017-18 Schedule/Results vs. Muskegon Lumberjacks:
Sep. 23, 2017, U18s @ Muskegon (SO/W, 7-6); Oct. 14, 2017, U18s @ Muskegon (W, 7-0); Dec. 19, 2017 (L, 3-6), U18s vs. Muskegon; Dec. 29, 2017, U17s @ Muskegon; Jan. 15, 2018, U17s vs. Muskegon; Jan. 27, 2018, U17s @ Muskegon; Mar. 4, 2018, U17s vs. Muskegon
GHOSTING THE PHANTOMS: This contest will be the fourth of nine meetings this season as Youngstown travels to USA Hockey Arena. Youngstown is currently in first place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 12-6-3-1 in the USHL entering the game.
The Phantoms won the last meeting by a score of 2-0, but the NTDP holds the lead on the season series 2-1-0 (W-L-OTL). The NTDP leads the all-time series 38-33-5 (W-L-OTL).
Phantoms Top Scorers:
Matthew Barry (6-14-20 in 22 GP),
Curtis Hall (10-7-17 in 18 GP),
Max Ellis (7-10-17 in 20 GP).
Ivan Prosvetov (6-2-2-0 in 12 GP, 3.07 GAA, .904 SV%)
Wouter Peeters (6-4-1-1 in 12 GP, 3.74 GAA, .898 SV%)
Nov. 3, U18s vs. Youngstown (W/OT, 5-4), Nov. 17, U18s at Youngstown (W, 8-5), Dec. 1, U17s at Youngstown (L, 0-2), Dec. 30, U17s vs. Youngstown, Jan. 15, U18s at Youngstown, Feb. 25, U18s vs. Youngstown, Mar. 30, U18s vs. Youngstown, Mar. 31, U17s at Youngstown, and Apr. 12, U17s at Youngstown.
Team USA vs. Youngstown: 2-1-0-0 (W-L-OTL-SOL)
Home: 1-0-0-0 Away: 1-1-0-0
Team USA All-Time Record vs. Youngstown: 37-33-5 (W-L-OTL)
Home: 24-11-2 Road:13-22-3
LAST TIME OUT: Both teams are coming off a week without games following a brief holiday break. Prior to last weekend, the U18s hosted Michigan State University at USA Hockey Arena for the first time on Satuday Dec. 16. The U18s fell to Michigan State, 3-0 following solid performances by NTDP alums Patrick Khodorenko (2014-16, 1-0-1) and Ed Minney (2012-14, 20 save shutout). Former NTDP coaches (now representing the MSU coaching staff), Chris Luongo (2015-17), Joe Exter (2007-11) and Danton Cole (2012-17) were honored with an in-game tribute for their time spent with the NTDP.
Following the loss to the Spartans, the U18s fell to the Muskegon Lumberjacks, 6-3, on Tuesday (Dec. 19) morning at USA Hockey Arena. Jack DeBoer (Madison, N.J.), Spencer Stastney (Mequon, Wis.) and Ty Emberson (Eau Claire, Wis.) tallied goals for the U18s while Drew DeRidder (Fenton, Mich.) and Jonathan Mor (Highland Park, Ill.) combined for 17 saves for Team USA.
The U17s are coming off an 11-day break following a 2-1 shootout victory against tournament-host Russia on Saturday (Dec. 16) in the 2017 Under-17 Four Nations Tournament. Cole Caufield (Stevens Point, Wis.) scored the loan regulation goal for the U17s in the victory. Alex Turcotte (Island Lake, Ill.) scored the shootout winner while goaltender Spencer Knight (Darien, Conn.) made 31 saves and was a perfect 5-5 in the shootout to help secure the victory. The U17s also secured victories against Switzerland (7-2, Dec. 15) and Slovakia (12-0, Dec. 14). Jack Hughes (Orlando, Fla.) was named Best Forward of the tournament and Caufield was named Highest Scorer of the tournament.
2017-18 NTDP PERFORMANCE TRACKER: U18s: Oliver Wahlstrom (16-15-31 in 26 GP, +4), Joel Farabee (13-14-27 in 26 GP, +3), Bode Wilde (5-12-17 in 26 GP, +13), Drew DeRidder (10-5-0-1 in 19 GP, 2.59 GAA, .906 SV%, 3 SO)
U17s: Jack Hughes (13-35-48 in 24 GP, +14), Cole Caufield (30-9-39 in 24 GP, +10), Matthew Boldy (9-21-30 in 24 GP, +6), Spencer Knight (10-2-0-0 in 17 GP, 2.40 GAA, .916 SV%, 1 SO) and Cameron Rowe (9-3-0-0 in 16 GP, 3.29 GAA, .872 SV%)
SUPER HERO NIGHT: Don’t miss the NTDP’s annual Super Hero Night on Saturday (Dec. 30) when the U17s host the Youngstown Phantoms at USA Hockey Arena. Favorite DC Universe characters will be on-site throughout the game and the first 100 kids get a free super hero cape. Kids are also encouraged to wear their super hero costume to win prizes throughout the night. For more information and for tickets please visit USAHockeyNTDP.com/Tix.
WORLD JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP UPDATE: The 23-player roster for the 2018 U.S. National Junior Team that is competing in the 2018 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship in Buffalo, New York, from Dec. 26, 2017 - Jan. 5, 2018 that was announced on Saturday (Dec. 23) features 12 former NTDP players. All four Team USA captains are also NTDP alums. Joey Anderson (2014-16, University of Minnesota Duluth) is serving as the team captain while Kieffer Bellows (2015-16, Minn./Portland Winterhawks) Adam Fox (2014-16/Harvard University) and Ryan Lindgren (2014-16/University of Minnesota) were tabbed alternate captains of the squad. Bellows, Fox and Lindgren were all members of last year’s U.S. National Junior Team that captured the gold medal at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship in Montreal and Toronto, Canada.
The other alumni competing for Team USA includes: goaltenders Jake Oettinger (2014-16/Boston University), and Joseph Woll (2014-16/Boston College), defenseman Quinn Hughes (2015-17/University of Michigan) and forwards Trent Frederic (2014-16/ University of Wisconsin), Max Jones (2014-15/London Knights), Will Lockwood (2014-16/ University of Michigan), Josh Norris (2015-17/ University of Michigan) and Brady Tkachuk (2015-17/ Boston University).
Team USA won its two preliminary matchups against Belarus (14-0, Dec. 20) and Sweden (3-1, Dec. 22) before capturing its first preliminary round matchup victory against Denmark on Tuesday (Dec. 26) with a score of 9-0. Team USA is back in action on Thursday (Dec. 28) against Slovakia at 8 p.m. ET at the KeyBank Center. Full coverage for Team USA can be found at TeamUSA.USAHockey.com/WorldJuniors2018.
STAR WARS COMING TO USA HOCKEY ARENA: The NTDP will host its annual Star Wars Night on Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018. The game, which is sponsored locally by Hines Park Lincoln, will pit the U.S. National Under-17 Team against the Sioux Falls Stampede of the United States Hockey League.
For the fifth time, Team USA will wear Star Wars inspired jerseys during this event. Previous designs include Han Solo (2015), the iconic Stormtrooper (2016) and Star Wars: The Force Awakens hero robot BB-8 (2017). This season’s look will feature a reboot on a previous fan-favorite jersey. A full jersey unveiling will be announced in the coming weeks.
The jerseys will be auctioned off online at the NHL Auctions page. Bidding will commence following the game. Proceeds will benefit C.S. Mott Children's Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Since the auction's inception, it has raised over $40,000 for the hospital.
Among the festivities planned for Star Wars Night are appearances by characters represented by the 501st Legion & Rebel Legion costuming groups, as well as a ceremonial puck drop. The Under-17 Team will wear the specially designed jerseys throughout the game. Puck-drop is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET. For more information and for tickets please visit USAHockeyNTDP.com/Tix.
PLAYER FEATURE: No other sport could compare to hockey for U17s forward Matthew Boldy. Read this week’s here.
2018 UNDER-18 FIVE NATIONS TOURNAMENT TICKETS ON SALE: The 2018 Under-18 Five Nations Tournament presented by Hines Park Lincoln will take place February 13-17 at USA Hockey Arena.
Top hockey players under the age of 18 from the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, Sweden and the United States will compete in a total of 10 games at USA Hockey Arena. This is one of the most heavily NHL scouted events as a majority of the players competing are eligible for the 2018 NHL Draft.
To purchase tickets, or for more information, visit USAHockeyNTDP.com/20185NationsTix or call the USA Hockey Arena box office at 734.453.8400.
U18S NCAA SCHEDULE: The U.S. National Under-18 Team will skate in 15 NCAA games this season, including 11 tilts with Division I squads. The U18s record sits at 3-7-0 (W-L-T) against collegiate opponents. Take a look at the latest USA Hockey/USA Today Men's College Hockey poll.
Current Players & Staff
Trading Places: U.S. NTDP's DeRidder, MSU's Miller (Plymouth Observer)
Welcome back? USA Hockey alums propel MSU to 3-0 win (Plymouth Observer)
Ex-NTDP coaches Cole, Luongo to return with MSU (Plymouth Observer)
Former Players & Staff
Break's over: Devils look to resume their winning play (NorthJersey.com)
New Jersey Devils Prospect Update: 12/26/17 (AllAboutTheJersey.com)
Time to get a good look at Dallas Stars prospects (Dallas News)
Devils' Will Butcher: Causes fits for Chicago (CBSSports.com)
The evolution of Auston Matthews (MSN.com)
Five young U.S. stars to watch at world juniors (USA Today)