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Notebook (Jan. 27) - Top-Ranked Adrian Faces U18s at Ice Cube

01/27/2014, 2:30pm EST
By Becky Olsen

The U.S. National Under-17 Team says goodbye to Ann Arbor, Mich. as it travels west for another United States Hockey League road game, while the Under-18 Team hosts a college game this week.

A FORMIDABLE COLLEGE FOE: The U.S. National Under-18 Team faces Adrian College at 7 p.m. EST Tuesday at the Ann Arbor Ice Cube. Adrian is the top ranked team in NCAA Division III.

“The college games are always tough,” said head coach Danton Cole, whose squad is 5-8-0 (W-L-T) against college teams this season. “There are times where we don’t get the results we want, but we are doing the things we need to do to get a win. Adrian will be a good test for us on Tuesday.”

The U18s swept a pair of USHL road games last week, beating Youngstown 4-2 on Friday before defeating Muskegon 7-0 on Saturday.

In the win over Youngstown, Nolan Stevens (Manhattan Beach, Calif.), Ryan Bliss (Chelmsford, Mass.), Jack Eichel (North Chelmsford, Mass.) and Sonny Milano (Massapequa, N.Y.) tallied the goals.

Edwin Minney (Wind Gap, Pa.) kicked out 38 shots to earn the shutout at Muskegon. Anders Bjork (Mequon, Wis.) paced the offensive with a pair of goals, while Dylan Pavelek (Marysville, Mich.), Alex Tuch (Baldwinsville, N.Y.), Jack Dougherty (Cottage Grove, Minn.), Shane Gersich (Chaska, Minn.) and Nathan Billitier (Spencerport, N.Y.) added single tallies.

STUCK ON THE ROAD: The U.S. National Under-17 Team heads back on the road this week to face the Indiana Ice on Thursday. The game marks the 11th straight USHL road contest for the U17s.

“We need to keep pushing forward,” head coach Don Granato said. “This has been a difficult stretch of road contests. The game against Indiana is the last game before our final international contest of the season, so we can’t look ahead. We need to be focused on the game at hand.”

The U17s dropped a 2-1 road decision in overtime to the Green Bay Gamblers on Saturday. Brendan Warren (Carleton, Mich.) recorded the lone goal, while goalie Michael Lackey (Washington, D.C.) finished with 21 saves.

After inclement weather pushed the Muskegon game back to Sunday, the U17s dropped a 5-2 decision. Casey Fitzgerald (North Reading, Mass.) and Michael Floodstrand (Hinsdale, Ill.) recorded the goals. Luke Opilka (St. Louis, Mo.) finished with 44 stops in net.

Notebook

  • Tickets for Team USA home games are $7 for adults and $5 for children, seniors and active military members. Youth hockey players wearing their team jerseys are admitted for $1. Tickets can be purchased by calling the NTDP at (734) 327-9251.
  • Edwin Minney was named co-recipient of the Reebok Goaltender of the Week award for the 19th week of the 2013-14 USHL regular season. Minney stopped all 48 shots he faced in a 7-0 win over Muskegon on Saturday night. Former National Team Development Program netminder Jared Rutledge (Chicago, Ill./2010-12), now skating for the Green Bay Gamblers, was the other winner.
  • Former NTDP and current Yale University freshman forward John Hayden (Greenwich, Conn./2011-13) was named the ECAC Player of the Week on Jan. 21. Hayden recorded four points (2-2) in Yale’s split with Clarkson University and St. Lawrence University.
  • The U18s carry a mark of 22-13-1 (W-L-OTL) into Tuesday’s game with Adrian College. The squad is averaging 3.83 goals per game while allowing 2.81 goals.
  • The U18s are paced by Sonny Milano (15-36), who has compiled 51 points in 34 games. Jack Eichel (22-23) ranks second with 45 points, while Alex Tuch (21-18) sits third with 39 points. Dylan Larkin (17-14) is fourth with 31 points, while Ryan Hitchcock (Manhasset, N.Y./7-23) ranks fifth with 30 points.
  • In goal for the U18s, Edwin Minney holds an 12-7-1 mark along with a 2.76 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage. Blake Weyrick (Ojai, Calif.) is 5-4-0 with a 3.01 GAA and an .894 save percentage.
  • Team USA holds an 18-17-2 (W-L-OTL) mark in USHL play and is sixth in the Eastern Conference standings.
  • The U17s carry a 21-14-1 (W-L-OTL) mark into this week’s action.
  • The U17s are paced by Jeremy Bracco (Freeport, N.Y./13-36), who has amassed 49 points in 36 games. Colin White (Hanover, Mass./26-21) sits just behind with 47 points. Luke Kirwan (Dewitt, N.Y./19-20) sits third with 39 points, while Luke Kunin (Chesterfield, Mo./13-14) is fourth with 27 points. Rounding out the top-six are Jordan Greenway (Potsdam, N.Y./11-15) and Christian Fischer (Wayne, Ill./10-16), who are tied with 26 points apiece.
  • In net for the U17s, Michael Lackey and Luke Opilka split duties. Lackey holds a 11-7-1 record along with a 2.87 GAA and an .887 save percentage. Opilka is 10-7-0 with a 3.92 GAA and an .864 save percentage.

Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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