Bryan Erikson on where the Generals are down the stretch of Training Camp: Read more

To play junior hockey, you have to show up, compete, and earn everything. Bryan Erikson has 27 players still looking to do just that as the NAHL Generals just finished up an intersquad scrimmage with the help of their NA3HL Team

Head Coach, an General Manager Bryan Erikson talked abut how well camp is going, saying that

” Scrimmage was good. Good game. 6-5 final. Nick Ramm stole the show. 3 goals including GWG with a minute left. He has had a great camp. For the NA3 Sean Gorman had a great SHG and played well. Eddie Mulligan for the 3 team was also very good all game. It was fun to see the guys play in a competitive environment that wasn’t just practice. Also important for guys not used to playing junior hockey to understand the sitting that goes on. Warm-up for 15 minutes, then sit for about 20 until puck drop. Play a period then take 17 minutes off. Gets them ready for how they will need to take care of their body and diet before, during and after a game.”

Erikson is a believer inn process and effort .His thoughts on where the group is speak to the loyalty he has for this group . The cuts to get to 25 will be tough fro

He said:

” We have 27 guys in camp. Need to be down to 25 soon but we are in no rush. Have 2 exhibition games this week on Friday and Saturday against Danbury and we will have to make some hard decisions based on those games. Ideally down to 25 before our first official games. It’s tough. Nobody has stood out as an easy cut. Everyone is making a strong case to stay here.” The Generals will get to play preseason hockey against the always physical Danbury Jr Hat Tricks. These two games should give Erikson more data, and a chance to see how his rookies are doing playing junior hockey against another team.

One big area to watch for the Generals this year is their net. .With Hugo Haas and Anton Castro currently with the Fargo Force, two more sports are open for Erikson. Carson Limesand, and Cam Kuntar are both competing to be the main starter.

On their play styles, Erikson said ” Carson is very calm in net. He doesn’t let off a lot of rebounds. Does a good job tracking pucks and has been able to make stops. Cam is very athletic and is never out of a play. He is able to get post to post very quickly while still staying square to the shooter. They both will need our patience and to play well starting the season but we are confident they both can excel at this level.”

Now the Generals have one more chance to shine for Erikson and the team this weekend before the NAHL Regular season begins. The teams that this group will be facing at the NAHL Showcase this month, combined with the rest of the league will all think their process is the best. Erikson simply focuses on promoting his team, and helping his group have fun while being accountable.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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Eric Lang: Moving AIC Forward into the 2021-2022 Campaign

Photo Credit: Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

American International College Hockey Head Coach Eric Lang had a change in his expected roster. A few months ago he was expecting to add one more transfer at most after the commitments of Chris Vanos-Shaw, and Brian Rigali. He went on to add three more transfers, all with the aim of making the Yellow Jackets better. As he said , “It’s solely my job to always make sure we are trying to put the best team on the ice that we can.” Lang acknowledges that his roster is big, at 32 players, with four of them being goaltenders, he knows that players will have to earn playing time. Unlike other teams, while of course being heavily involved in practice planning early on, he lets his assistants run more things early on so Lang can sit and evaluate things more. He is paid to put the best team possible on the ice, and likes to observe things in a different way more early on.

Lang said that his team plays more small area games than most, and he has the roster to do it. His practices are high energy, and he routinely lays out what players not in the lineup need to do in practice to earn a spot. Throughout his time at AIC, he has prided himself on transparency and honesty, and being honest with each player on where they are, the positive, and negative has been a big part of that. Given that his side has won the last three Atlantic Hockey Regular Season Championships, it’s hard to argue with that result. He credits his institution and staff for helping him find the financial backing to add the additional transfers .

As for his additonal transfers, he had some things to say. On Brian Kramer he went on say that, “Brian Kramer may be one of the top defensemen in our league. On, Santeri Hartikainen he noted that his former and future teammate Jake Stella said of him a version of what Aaron Grounds said about Brian Kramer, a former junior hockey teamate. Stella said it best to Lang when he asked for feedback on Hartikainenen saying ” you’ve gotta go get him.”

As for Alec Calvaruso, Lang praised his big game resume. The newest AIC netminder brings veteran experience, two junior hockey championships, and needed insurance in net. With Stefano Durante turning pro, Lang wanted another goaltender he could turn to when in need of quality minutes. He praised all of his netminding group from last year that is returning, and praised Durante’s career at AIC. Lang did not want to let the season head south due to lack of goaltending depth, so he added a player with a solid background to a group of good humans who can all provide an answer for AIC in net.

As for the team , Lang also noted that all but one of his players is fully vaccinated, and before the puck drops in October, he expects all of them to be . As he said, “our guys are serious about the season, we want to play with as little hiccups as possible.. they’ re guys that have always put others ahead of themselves and I think thats part of the deal this season. “

As for one of the leaders of this group, he talked about Chris Dodero. Not many senior or graduate leaders on a college hockey team own their own hockey consulting business. AIC is lucky to have Dodero who also runs a business called Prodero Hockey. His business is helping players train and having fun on the ice while doing so, watching any of the group’s facebook videos shows players from different leagues working to get better consistently, just like Dodero. He took the honest feedback from Lang as a freshman and used that to help grow his game into a lineup regular, and along the way started helping others improve as well. As Lang said of Dodero ” he is one of the greatest stories in college hockey, and everything he does has a purposed.” When Dodero’s pro career is done, Lang was confident in saying, “he will be an NHL Skills coach.”

On the rest of his group, Lang mentioned a number of players poised to surprise people. One player he singled out is Hurricanes prospect Jake Kucharski who played 40 stellar minutes of hockey in net against a North Dakota team that was a favorite to win the national championship. Lang said of Kucharski “he has best goalie in our league potential and top goalie in our country potential.” Kucharski and AIC open the season against Providence College, the team Kucharski transferred from to play for Lang.

Looking at the bigger picture, Lang took the time to praise his conference. With the movement in the transfer portal, he said ” our league got exponentially better” this summer. He expects Canisius to be competitive again, and expects Sacred Heart to compete for the title as well, and thinks every team in the league is competitive. With eight non conference games on the docket for each team he said “I think this could be a good year for Atlantic Hockey to get two teams in (to the NCAA Tournament).”

Lang also mentioned the relationships he still has with his mentor and former boss, Brian Riley. After Riley’s Army West Point group opens their season against Providence, Lang noted that he may, as he often does, chat about the game and a common opponent with his mentor. Lang also took the time to praise the pro potential of Army’s star, Colin Bilek, saying of the need to crowd him on the ice “he has to feel crowded.. if youre not a stick length away from him or less the puck is going off your crossbar and in your net.” He also praised the multidimensional game of Bilek as his complete game makes his goal scoring tougher to defend against. Given his skill he expects the pro ranks to notice him this season.

Back to his group, Lang said bluntly “they pay me here to make sure I put the best team on the ice possible.” He always noted that should a way to make another addition work , as we have seen, he would consider it over the semester break as an example of the continuous work he and his staff do to make that goal a reality. AIC is setup well to compete against an ever tough Atlantic Hockey Association, and, has two extra non conference games to show the rest of the college hockey world what they can do, just like the rest of this conference does.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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Bilek

Atlantic Hockey Showcase Games: Bentley

The Bentley Falcons have a lot of early chances to make their mark outside of Atlantic Hockey this year. One game stands out with the chance for this veteran team to make their mark against a local rival.

October 2 at Northeastern

The Falcons have a lot of transfers from different teams on their roster. Head Coach Ryan Soderquist has augmented his group with leaders from around this game. The opening game of the season for these Falcons sees them face a transfer of their own. Jakov Novak will be leading a young Huskies group against the Falcons that he played for the past three seasons. The Senators draft pick is a power forward that will compliment the forward group of the Huskies, and should lead their physical efforts against Bentley.

As for the Falcons, they have a few different options up front. Kohei Sato should get a heavy look to play on the first line for Soderquist’s group. Also, Soderquist will be expecting more from players with similar profiles to Novak like Matt Gosiewski, the power forward who plays in key minutes. If he can expand his nearly point per game pace (15 points in 16 games played), then the Falcons look to have some more options against a Huskies team with one of the better returning underclassmen goaltenders in the country, Devon Levi.

Why this game as the showcase?

Well, the Huskies are an NCAA Tournament level team, like the early non conference schedule the Falcons face, that is not the main reason. It is for a true showcase for Falcons Hockey. Northeastern is a program on the rise, and a local rival to the Falcons. 13.4 miles seperate Waltham and Boston, and miles more in incorrect perceptions seperate how people view Atlantic Hockey as a conference compared to Hockey East. The pride Soderquist’s group would have if they beat a school that goes on to win the Beanpot and more would be hard to measure with the pairwise. In addition, for Atlantic Hockey to get two or more teams in an NCAA Tournament for just their second time, they fundamentally have to win these types of early season games more often.

This game presents a clash of styles in this game. Older and more physical in Bentley is going up against a team with more NHL draft picks, and a roster that is a little younger. For a season opener, this game promises to be a high octane affair with two clashing styles right away in Boston. How it goes for the Falcons could give them a positive data point in the rest of their season. Bentley likes to play Hockey East teams in part due to geography, and also because the teams they play make their group better, if the Falcons can open the season with a win over one, then it could show us how far this group can fly this season.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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Kohei Sato-What he brings to Bentley University Hockey from his NAHL Coach

Northeast Generals Head Coach Bryan Erikson is a relationship builder. To co-own, and coach an NAHL team with the pressure of helping kids find their next home in the hockey world, you have to be, and he is. As part of the thousands of relationships he has built in his distinguished hockey career, he has helped develop the first Japanese Division One Men’s Ice Hockey player at the NCAA level, Kohei Sato. Sato spent the last four years at the University of New Hampshire, where his speed always stood out as his first contribution on ice. In addition to that speed, he brings a veteran presence and playmaking eye to the Bentley Falcons, where he will be playing his fifth year of college hockey this season. The Falcons have a veteran heavy team with an eye to getting to their second ever Atlantic Hockey Championship, and winning their first one.

The Falcons have never made the NCAA Tournament, and their head coach, Ryan Soderquist, has assembled a roster with graduate transfers like Sato, combined with a strong returning class of Falcons with that simple aim. Sato and his Falcons will have multiple chances to make the college hockey world take notice of them early on. The first three weekends of games for the Falcons have them facing Northeastern, then Ohio State, followed by Boston College. Sato will play an instrumental role in getting the Falcons to the NCAA Tournament, and in leading them this year.

Here is what Erikson said about his time as a General

” Kohei is a great kid and hockey player. He had a relationship with [the late] Richard “Harvey” Jackson who we have an award named after. He was one of my best friends in the world. He was also maybe one of the best and quickest judges of character that we knew. The relationship between Harvey and Kohei was awesome. They would tease each other, hug each other, have long talks, joke around. It was such a sign of Kohei being a special person. As for on the ice his speed is electric. He is the fastest skater I have ever coached or seen in the NA. But his most memorable goal has to be when we were in our first year in Wilkes-Barre playing the Knights. One of our D men shot the puck so wide of the net that it hit Ko in the visor, broke it in half (and broke his nose) but the puck went in for a goal. He was as excited about that goal as any other he ever scored. He Just loves the game.”

This year, Sato will get to face his former teammate, Colin Bilek twice as the top two scorers from the 2016-2017 Generals team will be opponents in conference play. Sato finished second in scoring that year to Bilek, despite playing in 12 less games than Colin did.

As to the future for Kohei, and Erikson’s excitement to see him play, given that Waltham, Massachusetts is only about 45 minutes north of Attleboro. Erikson had the following to say:

” I think Ko’s success in Hockey East speaks for itself. He played a few years in the NA3 then 1 year in the NA and made the jump to UNH where he played for 4 years. He put up 30 points while taking advantage of the ice time he earned. And I think he will bring experience to a good team. He will bring speed and the ability to change the game. Just an outstanding player with gamebreaking speed. And Ko is a professional hockey player. How he does will dictate what level he is at. And we will help as much as we can to ensure he is a great spot. I am excited to go to a few games this year (especially when they play Army) and to see Ko’s continued growth as a person and player.”

Sato has already done the unique thing in playing college hockey, and became a leader for the Wildcats over four years there. Now, he has a chance to help lead the Falcons to what would be the most unique thing for their program, their first ever NCAA Tournament trip. It would be the program’s first ever national postseason, and a fitting cap to the distinguished college hockey career Sato has had. His path to get to this point is a testament to his hard work, positive attitude that is common amongst Generals’ alums, and his consistent ability to develop on and off the ice.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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Building the Gens: Head Coach Bryan Erikson on progress after opening of main camp

Photo Credit: Patrick Garriepy-Patrick Garriepy Photography

The Northeast Generals come in to the 2021-2022 campaign ready to build on the solid finish their group had to the previous year. While falling short of the playoffs, a team that was in constant change throughout the year found a way to gel near the end of the year well enough to at least come closer to a playoff spot, while helping all of their 2000-born players find college homes.

This year’s team is a mix of returners, and a lot of them, who have to take the next step from last year, and some new players looking to make their mark in this league.

With the NAHL camp just starting this week, Erikson went to great lengths to talk about what the first week of his camp looks like, and how the focus shifts from skill development to evaluation.

As he said:

“It’s mostly skill development right now. We are working on playing with speed, activating our D and how we perform on the rush both offensively and defensively. We have already been on the ice for over 8 hours in 2.5 days. The boys have worked really hard. It’s been a fun week so far. The boys are a little further along than I thought they would be. Still a ton of work to do implementing systems and our play style but the guys that Matt Dibble and the staff have brought in all are playing the way in which I want them to. Fast, physical and accountable And we will use our time in training camp to seamlessly transition to regular practice as we will really get into everything next week and build on it. The players that can adjust quickly within our structure will cement their spots higher in the line-up. The ones that can’t will be facing an uphill battle for consistent ice time until they get up to speed. But there is plenty of time and no reason why everyone shouldn’t have everything down by our first game.” The Generals open up on the road at Danbury for two games in a couple of weeks before the NAHL Showcase in Blaine Minnesota the following week.

As to who has stood out so far, Eriskon had a lot to say including: “Our returners have really taken a step forward. They all had monster off seasons. One key piece is Brent Keefer who added about 19 pounds of muscle and it has really helped him create more space. He looks poised to have a dominant year. On the backend Jackson McCarthy has been very very good. Physical, much more controlled with the puck and making great decisions. Excited to see both of them along with Kyle Schroeder who is buzzing. And then we have our leadership group in Co-Captains Matt Boczar and David Andreychuk. Both have come in and set a tone that the rest of the guys have followed. And our Assistant Captains Adam Smith and Paul Minnehan have both stepped up with their play and their presence in the locker room. Aidan Flynn and Jared Scott have both added speed and more skill to their game and they are looking very good. As for newcomers nobody has stood out negatively at all. But a few that have been a little bit ahead of where we maybe were expecting them to be. Bryce Cooper has been a physical force and his skating is great. Douglas Friberg is getting close to being ready to be dominant. And up front Ryan Corcoran has been a great surprise. We knew he was good but I think he has been a bit better than expected by some of the staff. Sixten Jenersjo has also been great. Has had a great first week. And Joey McGraw the youngest player in the league has handled himself very well in the first week. Good news for everyone is they look good. Bad news in some cases is that they have reset the expectations to be even higher next week.”

Erikson knows the camp process is consistent, and through this process, the staff is finding out where everyone is pretty quickly,

As he said, here is what a typical day looks like, keeping in mind that all Generals players have access to drills ahead of time and are expected to bring knowledge of each drill to it.

Erikson provided the schedule of a normal day with this knowledge in mind

” 10:30am – Video, 11:00am – Team Stretch, 12:00pm – 1:30pm – On Ice (practice 1), 1:45pm Workout Group 1 in Gym, 2:30pm Workout Group 2 in Gym, 3:45pm – 5:15pm – On Ice (practice 2), 5:30pm – Wrap up and preview of next day.”

The goal of camp is to , as Erikson said keep things simple, and “we try to let the kids focus on just the hockey part as much as possible. We set it up to be a grueling two weeks to make sure the players have put in the proper work in the off season and that they are ready to contribute to the team. It helps separate kids pretty quickly between who is ready and who isn’t.”

Earning time in Erikson’s lineup requires all of the things he has mentioned in this piece. The Generals have a lot of talent on a team ready to take the next step from their strong finish to last year. On a team full of talent, after the positive start to camp, just like in games after last year, after a strong first week, the expectations for this group have been raised. Players are competing for a roster spot, and to not be a borderline player subject to what some of the Generals’ talent at USHL camps ends up doing. Some of them could come back to Attleboro, and all head off to their USHL camps during the early part of September. For those in camp for Erikson, the best thing to do is , as Erikson said, focus on the hockey and show that you belong on the team regardless of any external factor, the other stuff will work itself out as a team of veterans and newcomers looks to start the season strong in two weeks.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Your donation will help expand what content we can offer and how many stories we can tell.

Army West Point Hockey is ready to add to the tradition of the program this season: Read more

Photo Credit : Army West Point Athletics

Army West Point Hockey Head Coach Brian Riley needed a new stick. He got to the first day of the season, and realized it was time for a new stick because his previous one was sitting in his office. It is in his office with a place of honor, because that stick broke in practice during the 13 game unbeaten streak his team went on to round out the 2020-2021 regular season and first round of the postseason. Riley, while calling himself not superstitious, likes to not change things during times where his team is winning, and not changing the broken stick, or cutting his hair for the remainder of the season were two of those things. With the season ending, Riley cut his hair in short order, but the stick took on a deeper meaning. That is, the senior class all signed the broken stick, and it now resides in Riley’s office as a reminder of all that one of the best teams to ever represent West Point did last year. Now it is time to move forward for the Black Knights.

With the first day of classes done, the Army West Point Hockey team is back on campus and practicing, ready to follow up one of the best years in this program’s history. Eight seniors, including All American netminder Trevin Kozlowski lead this team to within one goal of advancing to the Atlantic Hockey Championship. Brian Riley’s group fought valiantly and was outfoxed by one of his former assistants, Trevor Large’s Canisius Golden Griffins in overtime of the Atlantic Hockey semifinals. The eight seniors now having graduated leaves holes for new players to fill, and will give the chance for returners to see their ice time increase. Power forwards like Patrick Smyth and Kendrick Frost will be able to play a big part in the middle six for this team, and provide the depth to this group in the forward ranks. Smyth is a faceoff specialist who should add depth to the penalty kill for the Black Knights, and Frost has a track record from Junior Hockey that shows the type of positive power forward he can be for this group. Riley has both of them as options to play this year. Last year he did not.

One constant for this team is returning senior co-captain Colin Bilek, the Northeast Generals Alum, and leader of this team is the returning leading goal scorer from the 2020-2021 campaign nationwide. His effervescent personality, combined with his ability to lead will play a role in how well the group does. If Bilek has a full season anywhere close to what he did last year, expect the NHL and the professional ranks to be taking notice.

As for the team’s collective action to stop the spread of Covid 19, they have all done their part .The staff and players are fully vaccinated already. The excitment of Riley’s group to play non conference games this year is evident, and Army faces two early tests out of Atlantic Hockey play. They open on the road against Providence, then two weeks later head north with their football team to Madison to take on the Badgers of Wisconsin.

As to the forming of this year’s group, Riley is happy to be back together. As he said of the early work of his group .”we’ve had three skill practices this week.. its good to just be able to get out there.” One of the honest realities Riley and his staff has to face every season is missing his seniors in this first week. As he said, “you’re looking around for your seniors and realize oh their not here anymore.”

This year’s group for Riley faces more questions on defense and in net. The group has three capable goalies with similar styles all competing to earn the number one spot. In net, the three way competition is expected to be a fun one. Returners Justin Evanson, Gavin Abric both have an outgoing personality and should battle for the net along with plebe Evan Szary. All are hard workers that expect to push the other two for time in net. On the ice, as Riley said, “all three are different styles than Trev was.” They are all athletic netminders that can get side to side very quick, and have similarities in their game to recent Lake Superior State graduate Mareks Mitens. As a result of the gulf in styles between Kozlowski and these three netminders, Riley expects some adjustment in how the team plays and prepares for each game. The three netminders have a combined two and a half games of experience amongst themselves.

As for the eight first year players or plebes, they routinely have the biggest adjustments to make. The demands of West Point always have them needing to adjust to the day to day with more on their plates. The plebes have gone seven weeks without being on the ice between Cadet Basic Training, and Reorganization Week. As Riley said, “I think it will take a couple weeks for them being comfortable back on the ice. ” They all will have to figure out how to get on, and stay on the ” train (of academic requirements, academy, and military requirements) that pulls out of the station from day one at West Point..”

Riley mentioned two of his sophomores looking to improve on their stellar plebe seasons, Lincoln Hatten and Mich Machlitt. As he said, “they certainly didn’t disappoint us as plebes.” Both have the tools and track records needed to play at an elite level. They, along with Bilek, will be expected to carry the mission up front and lead the way in points and production.

As to adjustments, in principle for Riley and his group, the underlying motto and traditions all remain. The staff does not look to implement a new theme each year, and tries to keep things consistent. Riley said it best when he said that “I’m really proud of the fact that our culture is really really good, and we just want to be a team that’s hard to play against and a team that plays for each other.”

Looking ahead to the future, Riley also touched on recruiting in a more normal year than the pandemic-marred 2021-2022 campaign. On the differences this year brings, Riley said that he is lookning forward to being able to, “just to be able to have kids on campus and go watch games… for us in the recruiting piece I believe getting kids to come to West Point is really important but most importantly it gives them the opportunity to meet the people here, I know as coaches we’re really looking forward to the year.”

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Your donation will help expand what content we can offer and how many stories we can tell.

#ComittedJYoung: Jonathan Young heads to St Olaf-Read more

Photo Credit :Patrick Garriepy-Patrick Garriepy Photography

The final 2000-birth year player for the Northeast Generals, Jonathan Young, has a college home. The dependable Northeast General heads to join Tyler Cooper at St. Olaf this upcoming season. This is a player that had his own hashtag as the Generals all worked as a unit to help promote the type of player that Young is to the college game. The hashtag #CommitJYoung, finally reached its logical conclusion today as Young committed to play for the Oles of St. Olaf in this upcoming season.

While Erikson and GM Matt Dibble both rightly think Young is a Division One-level player, this year has been tough on 2000 birth year players needing a home. The transfer portal filled with players taking their extra year to play, combined with two programs being suspended have created a lack of roster spots that Young would have likely taken. The landscape for recruiting will be different next season, as there are potentially at least five programs that could either come into existence at the Division One Level, or be revived at it (Alabama Huntsville, Robert Morris, Alaska Anchorage, Lindenwood, and potentially Tennessee State).

With that said, the Oles are a wonderful place for Young to go, as they are consistently one of the better Division Three schools, and these ranks have a history of producing professional players. More and more in the sport, the old model of ” if you’re good, they will find you” is true, and Young found the right fit for him. The Division Three circuit will be packed with players that play a Division One game, and make their games even more competitive.

With all of that said, here is what Bryan Erikson, Generals Head Coach said about Young in April ” Jonathan was always a player I coveted. Big, can skate and can rip the puck. The one knock on him was that he was just a goal scorer. That he didn’t use his size. And I felt with the way we emphasize the forecheck he could thrive in those areas of his game that needed work. But I think as he matured so did his game. I also believe that the relationship he has with the organization has helped him. He trusts us. We asked him to change his game a little and he bought in completely. He is now very very physical, has learned to be a great penalty killer, is a weapon on the Power Play and is a guy I rely on in the defensive zone. Those are parts of his game that he maybe wasn’t forced to do before. But he has come here and worked so incredibly hard both on and off the ice to improve. I am so proud of him as a person. Just a wonderful kid that craves knowledge. Always reading, always wanting to get more knowledgeable about whatever the topic is, space, science, history, habit building you name it. Just a curious kid that works hard at everything and you are seeing that hard work pay off with his production on the ice. He is not only going to be a very successful division 1 hockey player he is going to be an extremely successful person.”

Young is a humble player. As we said of his 100 point milestone in the NAHL ” Young is so humble about his NAHL career, he did not even realize that he was about to hit the 100 point milestone until his mom Karen told him a few days before he did it against the Danbury Jr. Hat Tricks.” This episode, among many shows the type of player that the Oles are getting. With Tyler Cooper joining him, the Oles are getting two top flight players from the Generals program.

Erikson is about helping his players find their next step. Today, finally, after a long year for Young to get to this point, he has found his, and is set up for success with the Oles, and beyond.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Your donation will help expand what content we can offer and how many stories we can tell.

Generals bolster Roc City Connection with trade ahead of training camp

When you think of August, for those not lucky enough to understand the value of this time in the junior hockey landscape, you do not instivively think trade

For the Northeast Generals, they lost a player that they developed. Payton Felix is heading to the Corpus Christi IceRays. The veteran forward has one final season to make an impact and earn a scholarship and a spot at the Division One level. The speed and jam he brings wherever he goes will be what any team who offers him a spot most likely sees on the ice first.

As Head Coach Bryan Erikson said of the trade on Felix’s departure, keeping in mind that the team has a plethora of returning forwards, and players in the USHL that could come back to Attleboro projected a bit ahead of him “This is a tough trade to make. Payton has been with our organization for 2 full years. 1 year with our U18 team and 1 year with our NA3 team. He is a fantastic kid that works extremely hard both on and off the ice. His motor is amazing and speed is elite. As an 01 Forward he had a few wings in front of him and I think the trade to Corpus will help him get some more ice time and bring a veteran presence to the Ice Rays.”

When you look at the success the NA3HL Generals had in getting to their league’s final four, the Fraser Cup, Felix was an instrumental part in that, putting up 51 points in 40 games in the regular season, then four points in eight playoff games. He will provide speed and leadership to an IceRays group needing it in their first season back on the ice in two years. Erikson and General Manager Matt Dibble proved that their loyalty, as it has been, remains in giving their players the best chance to find a college home. For some players, that best chance does not present itself in Attleboro.

With that loyalty, the Generals get back two players they know well through Dibble. As Erikson says of one of their acquisitions ” As for what we are getting back CJ Zezima is a kid that has played Roc City for a few years that we are very familiar with. He played for our friend Ryan Cruthers with the Charlotte Rush and was a dominant player for them. We expect him to make a huge impact on Day 1 with us.”

Dibble added ” Zez is a player who I would have considered as in the family before he was even a general. He plays Roc City, and is represented by one of my trusted friends in this business, Ben Osborne. My affiliation with the Charlotte Rush (where Zez played last year) gave me a pretty good understanding of who he is as a player and person. Ryan Cruthers coached him and billeted him last year in Charlotte, and I trust no ones development more. Ryan instills discipline and culture both on and off the ice and I look forward to seeing CJ bring what he’s learned to Northeast. CJ is the second player who comes to us via Charlotte Rush, joining Jared Scott. CJ is a kid I expect draws a lot of college attention early after a dynamic yet under-the-radar year in Charlotte.”

As for the other player they aquired today, they got the rights of Shawn McEwen. As Erikson said ” And Shaun will most likely be in Tri-City this year but having his rights in case it doesn’t work out for any reason is huge. He is a very skilled D man that is from MA and is committed to UMASS. So having a local player as a potential high end addition is a big get… Our roster is now very settled as we gear up for Training Camp next week. Really excited about the opportunity to do something special this year.”

Dibble added ” McEwen (or Q) is a kid I have known for a while and plays with me (for the Roc City Elite program) in the summer. He is a UMass Commit and slated to play in the USHL next year. Should plans not work out, we would be happy to have him in Northeast. He is a kid with an NHL frame and ability. For him, I think it’s about challenging himself and allowing his hockey IQ to catch up to his natural ability. If he does end up in northeast, we would have big expectations for him right away.”

Training camp starts next week, the season begins early next month, and Erikson and Dibble have a veteran roster full of players they know coming back, and coming to Attleboro from teams both are familiar with, along with a lot of talent in the USHL that could make their way back to Attleboro. Regardless of the roster this group opens with next month, they will have a pipeline of talent at levels above their league, and at tiers leading into it that can help.

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Atlantic Hockey Showcase Games: Canisius

While not playing games of the same panache as some of their conference brethren in the out of conference portion of the schedule, the Golden Griffins still have a schedule full of tough non conference opponents

One team that stands out amongst their out of conference foes is the school that their bench boss, Trevor Large, graduated from, Ferris State. While the Bulldogs are not the opponent with the biggest resume on the Golden Griffins’ Schedule, they are one that perhaps has the most intrigue.

First, this Bulldogs team has a lot of new talent coming in. For a team that only won one game last year, you would not have known that in watching them play. The style that Bob Daniels’ team plays is an up tempo one that relies on turnover generation and solid goaltending to win games. When the Bulldogs were at their best last season, they shocked Dryden McKay at home, one of the best goaltenders in the country, and got him pulled on a very small amount of shots faced.

In addition to this, this is the only two game series in a non conference setting Large will get to have his team that was arguably a game misconduct away from earning an NCAA spot to play in front of their faithful fans. They will face a team full of new players, and returners hungry to improve on their season from a year ago. Former Robert Morris defender, Brandon Michaelian would have tied Jake Transit for the team lead with points based on his totals from a year ago (15).

In net, Logan Stein has top flight pedigree and will pose a challenge for Large’s group given his technical skill. As part of a goaltending group of three, Stein looked the best for a goaltending group that was often having to face a high volume of high danger shots nightly.

For the Golden Griffins, they do not have as many newcomers, but the ones they are bringing in are set to have an immediate impact on a team full of top end speed and skill in their conference. Their most immediate impact player they are bringing in is Randy Hernandez. The Robert Morris transfer is one of the better skaters in college hockey, and paired together with Keaton Mastrodonato, and a player like JD Pogue, there is no limit to what Hernandez can do. if he can continue to hone his release and pick his shot up to match his skating, he will make life tough for the Bulldogs and many other teams.

While Large’s group plays many tough non conference opponents including Clarkson and Penn State, their is some mystery in the Ferris State team they will see for two days in October. The top end potential for the Bulldogs, if they can get some more skill contributions to match the grit they play the game with, they are able to compete with anyone in the CCHA. While they will not be picked to finish high, the Bulldogs, like Large’s group, are poised to knock off some favorites and prove some people wrong.

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For Alex Tertyshny, his new number at AIC has special meaning: Read Why

Photo Credit: Patrick Garriepy-Patrck Garriepy Photography

This offseason for Alex Tertyshny is one of transiton. The proud alum of the Northeast Generals program is working on building his game to compete for AIC this fall. Last year, he helped lead the Generals in the midst of a pandemic and a consistent roster churn that took them from a team with no postseason aspirations, to ones fighting for a playoff spot down the stretch.

This summer, Tertyshny, as he has done throughout his career, has found another way to honor his father, the late Philadelphia Flyer,Dmitri. This summer, AIC Associate Head Coach Matthew Woodard let Alexander know available numbers for his incoming class. Wanting to grow up and be like his dad, this moment meant even more to him. Just like his dad with the Flyers, Alex gets to wear the same number with AIC this fall

As he said, “we picked numbers a couple months ago, Coach Woodard called me and told me what numbers were available. I’ll be wearing #5 which I’m really excited about, special number to me. I haven’t wore it since I was a kid… it’ll be really special.”

If you don’t know about Tertyshny, you will get to see him at the NCAA level this year. Like his dad, he is a smooth skating defender with a keen hockey sense. Alex is working on building out the physical part of his game this summer, gaining muscle the right way while keeping his skating skills at the level that propelled him to AIC. He is going to have to earn a top six spot this year, as the Yellow Jackets have a strong defense group coming back, despite losses of Jeff Baum and Brennan Kapcheck to the pro ranks.

Tertyshny knows things will be tough. Like his father, he will have to earn every second of ice. Dmitri shocked many in the hockey world when he made the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1998 season, and Alex has the potential to do the same thing at the college level this season. As Alex said of the group he is joining “Also watched quite a bit of AIC games from last season, watched what the defenseman did last year to contribute to the teams success. I just want to be ready, the team is full of guys that are looking to improve and succeed and I want to do my part in chipping in to the teams success.”

Tertyshny is appreciative of the support from the AIC family he has already received. The accident that took Dmitri from this earth happened in late July, and every year this month is the toughest for Alex. He said ” I think I’ll most enjoy being a part of the community. It was a tough end to July. It always is at it marked 22 years since my father passed away. Coach Lang actually reached out on behalf of the team and said they were thinking of my family that day, I really appreciated it. Just excited to be part of that family.” The community of good humans is one of the things that drew Alexander to AIC. He is carving his own path, learning from his father every day (he frequently watches highlights of Dmitri, and plays a similar game to his father), and ready to take the next step this fall, playing Division One Hockey.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts