Wednesday, May 19, 2010

B³ Draft Coverage - USHL Entry Draft Results; Bruneteau Commits

***The Entry Draft recap is complete. Scroll down to read a brief bio on each of the Stars' draft picks. As always, if there are any blog readers who have further information about the players drafted by the Stars, please feel free to leave a comment below. Just because the Stars drafted these players doesn't mean that all of them will attend the tryout camp next month in Omaha. The Lincoln Stars just own their USHL rights.  It's up to them now if they want to attend camp and tryout.  Okay, off we go!

Ben played last season with the Walpole Express of the AJHL. In 42 games, Oskroba scored 30 points (17g, 13a), adding 78 PIM's. Ben has committed to play hockey at Northeastern University starting the fall of 2011. In the article I just linked, they list his height and weight at 6'6", 218 pounds, so I'm not sure which online source to believe. Ben is a big, mobile defenseman who can put the puck in the net. I expect to see him at tryouts, and hopefully a main-stay on the Stars blueline next season. As a '90, Oskroba would be considered an "overager" next season in the USHL. Ben is originally from Tempe, AZ.

Chris played for the Hill-Murray Pioneers High School (Class AA) team in Minnesota last season. In 31 games for the Pioneers last season, Casto scored 33 points (14g, 19a), along with 22 PIM's. Casto has committed to play hockey for the University of Minnesota-Duluth, starting the fall of 2011. Casto is another physical d-man who is more than comfortable with the puck. According to this article, Casto lives in the gym and is a workout nut. Casto is another player I expect to see at tryouts next month. Some of the articles I've read about Casto mention that he was one of the top defenseman in the state of Minnesota last season. Casto was the #182 ranked player in the NHL Central Scouting final rankings.

Last season for Team Maryland U-18 (NAPHL), Bretner played 64 games and potted 74 points (13g, 61a) as a 16 year old. In 19 playoff games, Bretner added 26 points (5g, 21a). Bretner is an offense-first type of defenseman who has proved himself against players older than him. As a '93, I'm not sure if Bretner is ready for the pace and physicality of the USHL, but hopefully we'll see him at tryouts next month and he can prove me wrong.  Bretner was the second youngest player on the Team Maryland U-18 roster last season.

The first forward taken by the Stars in this draft, Austin played 11 games in the USHL for Team USA U-17 last season. In those 11 games, Hervey scored 2 points (1g, 1a), with 4 PIM's. Hervey was called up to the Team USA squad in October of 2009. Before joining the U-17 team, Hervey played for Detroit Catholic Central High School. Hervey is a big kid for a '92, and considering he has some USHL experience under his belt, I expect to see him at tryouts.

Sinz is the second defenseman the Stars have drafted from Anchorage, AK in the past two entry drafts. Last year, the Stars drafted Dax Lauwers, who played 54 games for Lincoln and is committed to Army this Fall. Sinz played for the famous hockey prep school Shattuck St. Mary's last season, scoring 19 points (2g, 17a) in 50 games. Sinz also added 67 PIM's in those 50 games.

Lynes is the teammate of the Stars 3rd round pick, Josh Bretner. In 73 games played last season for Team Maryland U-18, Lynes racked up an impressive 109 points (66g, 43a), along with 50 PIM. In 19 playoff games, Lynes potted 35 points (25g, 8a). Looking at his stats, Lynes is a shoot-first type of forward. According to the link above, Lynes has signed a tender to play for the Topeka Roadrunners of the NAHL next season, so I'm not for certain if Lynes will show up to tryouts next month. It would be nice if Lynes and his former teammate Bretner attend together, but we shall see.  Jake's older brother, Luke, was drafted by the Washington Capitals in the fourth round of the 2006 NHL draft.

Hafner, who played for the Marquette Rangers of the NAHL last season, is the first goaltender selected by the Stars in this draft. In 21 games with the Rangers, Hafner was 11-6, with a 2.07 gaa, and an impressive .938 save percentage. As a '92, Hafner took control of the starting goaltender position late in the season, wrestling the starting job away from an '89 overager. Hafner is a very interesting goaltending prospect. He's proven himself as a '92 at the NAHL level (Tier II), so the next logical step up would be on a USHL squad. With Kevin Murdock all but guaranteed one of the two goaltending spots next season, and Matt Green out of the picture, there is a definite need for another goaltender. Let's hope he shows up at tryouts.

Cecere played last season for the Alberni Valley Bulldogs of the BCHL. In 60 games, Cecere scored 11 points (2g, 9a) along with 39 PIM's. According to Chris Heisenberg's NCAA Recruit Page, Cecere has committed to play hockey for the University of Nebraska-Omaha for either 2010 or 2011. I'm assuming since the Stars drafted Cecere, the coaches must have information that he will start at UNO in 2011. Cecere hails from West Des Moines, Iowa, and actually played 31 games for the Des Moines Buccaneers in 2008-09. As a '90, Nick would be an overager on the Stars roster next season.

Like Nick Cecere, MacMillan also played for the Alberni Valley Bulldogs of the BCHL last season. In 59 games, MacMillan scored 80 points (26g, 54a) along with 44 PIM's. The thing that sticks out to me in regards to MacMillan is his weight, but I'm sure he's still growing. A native of Penticton, British Columbia, Canada, MacMillan put up some impressive numbers last season. Can the Stars pull him away from his native Canada? We'll find out next month.  Update:  MacMillan has committed to play hockey at the University of North Dakota, starting the fall of 2011.  Published reports state that he will return to the BCHL next season, so I really doubt we'll see him at tryouts in June.

Round 10. Eric Scheid - Forward - 5'8" 150 - 5/5/92
Scheid spent last season with the Blaine Bengals high school team in Minnesota, where he had 23g and 32a in 30 games. The Bengals won the Section 5AA Tournament and made an appearance in the 2010 Minnesota Class AA State Tournament, but they were eliminated after two losses. Scheid is committed to Alaska-Anchorage and will play a year of juniors before college. At 150 pounds, Scheid will likely need to add a little weight to be productive in the USHL, but the heights and weights on the USHL site appear outdated, so he may already be bigger.

Round 15. Bradley Wilhelm - Forward - 5'9" 152 - 6/19/92
Like Scheid, Wilhelm is another smaller forward. He hails from Plymouth, Mich., and attended Detroit Catholic High School, the same school as 3rd round pick, Austin Hervey. Wilhelm helped his team win the 2009 MHSAA Division 1 Hockey Championship with two goals in the title game.  This year he was named a first-team All-State forward. He had 9 goals and 6 assists in 16 games.

Round 16. Paul Ladue - Defenseman - 5'11" 160 - 9/6/92
A junior at Grand Forks Central High School this past season, Ladue had 10g, 25a from the blue line. A teammate of Stars' Futures Draft pick, Luke Johnson, Ladue helped the Knights to a 24-3 record and to the 2010 State Championship title. Ladue was named to the 2010 North Dakota All-State team. A bit undersized for a defenseman right now, but most high school players are. He clearly has some offensive skill though. Hopefully Ladue will come with Johnson to tryouts.

Round 17. Thomas Schutt - Forward - 5'11" 171 - 4/28/93
Schutt is a teammate of Stars' Futures Draft Pick Max Coatta. Schutt put up 20g and 28a in 34 games with Minnetonka High School in Minnesota. Just a junior last year, Schutt won his team's Most Determined Player award, a quality Stars fans enjoy in current players like Garrett Peterson and past players like Ryan Kretzer. Schutt earned honorable mention All-Conference this season.

Round 18. Joshua Thorimbert - Goaltender - 6'0" 186 - 10/9/92
The Stars' second goalie in the draft, Thorimbert is an interesting prospect. He's from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, the same hometown as former Stars netminder David Reekie. In 58 games with the Kindersley Kippers of the SJHL last year, Thorimbert had a 26-14-4 record, a .917 save percentage and a 2.66 gaa. For his efforts, Thorimbert was named SJHL rookie of the year.  Here is an article that explains that Thorimbert really got hot as this last season progressed and that he raised the level of his game and is now attracting NHL scouts' attention. It would be great for competition if Thorimbert shows up at tryouts, but he will have many options, including staying in his home country. The Kamloops Blazers of the WHL drafted Thorimbert in 2007 (bantam draft).  Needless to say, this talented goalie will have decisions to make.  6/4 Update:  Thorimbert has committed to play collegiate hockey at Colorado College, starting this fall.  He will not attend the Stars tryout camp.

Round 19. Michael McKee - Forward - 6'4" 230 pounds - 8/17/93
Michael McKee is a mystery player. With all the information available on Google, there is hardly anything on McKee except a few game recaps that include his name as scoring a goal. What we can tell you is that McKee played for Kent School in Connecticut. Complicating things even more is that there is a college basketball player at Kent State named Mike McKee, so most search results return him. But as a 6'4", 230 pound 16 year old, the kid is absolutely huge for his age, which begs the question, "How well can he skate?" Hopefully we get a chance to find out at tryouts. He'd be easy to spot at forward.

Round 20. Kyle Quick - Defenseman - 5'11" 180 - 3/13/91
The Tonawanda, N.Y., native spent last season with Avon Old Farms in Connecticut, where he recorded 3g and 21a in 24 games as a senior. Prior to that, Quick played with the St. Louis Bandits in the NAHL, where he had 3g, 11a in 25 games and was +11. In December, Quick verbally committed to Brown for Fall 2010, but I'm guessing that has been pushed back or is no longer accurate, otherwise the Stars probably wouldn't have drafted him.

Round 21. Trevor Gutierrez - Goaltender - 5'10" 160 - 7/5/93
Last but not least, another goaltender. Gutierrez is an Alaskan who played with the Alaska All Stars last year, the same program that produced Dax Lauwers. Gutierrez is the youngest of the three goalies the Stars drafted and the smallest. However, in his last six games with the U-18 All Stars (remember he was only 16), Gutierrez was 6-0 and had a 1.33 gaa and a .936 save percentage...AKA the kind of numbers that will get you noticed.

Note: According to the official Lincoln Stars website, Stars defenseman Matt Bruneteau has accepted a scholarship to play hockey at Lake Superior State University next season. Matt was the very first Nebraska native to wear the black and blue of the Stars. Matt was a player who frequently put his body in harms way to benefit the team, so the fans will certainly miss his courage and fortitude on the ice. Congrats to Matt! Good luck at LSSU next season.


Yeti said...

The Lincoln coaches discuss the draft picks made the past two days. Copy and past the link below.

Yeti said...

Stars head coach Chad Johnson was on 104.1 The Blaze radio station this morning, talking about the drafts. Copy and paste the link below to listen to the interview.

Yeti said...

According to the article below by Brent Wagner of the Lincoln Journal Star, the Stars traded a fifth round draft pick to Chicago for Richard Coyne, a defenseman. Coyne started last season with the Sioux Falls Stampede, then he was traded to Chicago.

Coyne's Bio:

Brent Wagner's article:

The LJS article states that the return of Kevin Murdock is not 100%, as Doc might decide to transfer to a college instead. We'll have to wait and see.

Also, the article states that Garrett Peterson is not likely to attend Notre Dame next season, and will tryout with the Stars. Great news.

Ryan said...

If Murdock transfers, he has to sit out a year and most kids who do that go back to juniors if they still have eligibility so they can continue to play. Unless he goes DIII, then I don't think he has to sit out a year.

Anonymous said...

In a trade with Chicago, the Stars get Andrew Schmit and Richard Coyne

Yeti said...

Anonymous at 8:27am,

Do you have an online source? The LJS article I linked above states that the Stars traded a draft pick for Coyne, but it doesn't mention anything about Schmit.

Anonymous said...

I went to the link by Yeti (thanks!) and found it pretty interesting. Looks like a lot of good players could be coming up, let's hope they all show up for try-outs and many of them make the team! Speaking of try-outs, at the end of the article, it said they were at Omaha's Moylan Ice Plex. Is that the same as Tranquility, or is that somewhere different? Maybe I missed something from earlier.

Sam I am

Yeti said...

Sam I am,

Same place. Tim Moylan Tranquility Iceplex is the name of the building. It sits in the middle of Tranquility Park in Omaha.

Anonymous said...

Hey thanks! I'm really looking forward to this as I actually have that Monday off!

Sam I am