With the season heading towards the finish, lets take a look at which players have improved (or regressed) statistically.
Braden Pimm, F, (So.), 26 GP, 9-10-19, +11 (2010: 6-3-9)
Pimm has already doubled his point total from freshman year and he has gone from a -3 to a +11. With the entire first line graduating last year, there was a need for someone to step up and Pimm has answered that call. Despite coming in with good junior numbers, Pimm was more of a grinder last year. This year he has been getting top 6 minutes and has been one of the best players on the team. He hasn’t been on the scoresheet much since his two linemates got hurt, but you can;t blame that on lack of effort. He has been one of the few that has looked interest of late.
Steve Quailer, F (Jr.): 22 GP, 8-14-22, +11 (2010: 3-10-13, 2008: 10-15-25)
Quailer was on his way to surpassing the lofty highs he sat in his freshman season before an injury sidelined him in recent weeks. But he is rumored to be returning this weekend and with 6 games left, he has a good chance of setting career highs in goals, assists, and points. Husky fans were expecting big things from Quailer after the amazing freshman year he had. But a knee injury ended his ’09 season before it started and it clearly slowed him down in ’10. But this season has been a return to form for the Montreal prospect. The question now is how effective can he be when he returns? Especially without his linemate Cody Ferriero. Either way, Quailer has already made a huge improvement on last season.
Garrett Vermeersch, F (Jr.): 28 GP 6-12-18, -7 (2010: 5-6-11, 2009: 5-18-23)
Vermeersch has been a revelation this year. After a great freshman year, he was non-existent in his sophomore campaign. As a freshman, he had the benefit of playing with Steve Silva and Wade MacLeod, but he suffered without them and found himself on the 4th line by the end of last year. This year he has benefitted from playing with Ludwig Karlsson and Vinny Saponari, but you could also say those guys have beneffited from playing with him. Vermeersch has been a playmaker this season and his stats show that. The only downside is that “Mr. Minus” has lived up to his name, but his -7 would still be a career best.
Cody Ferriero, F (S0.): 17 GP, 9-6-15, +11 (2010: 4-3-7)
After a tumultuous beginning to his NU career, Ferriero had become an offensive force for the Huskies despite being in and out of the lineup due to two separate suspensions. He doubled last year’s points total in just half the games, but now an ACL injury has ended his season early. Unfortunately, he will probably miss part of next season as well. As we saw with Quailer, it might take some time to get back to full speed, which is unfortunate because Ferriero was really beginning to fulfill his potential.
Drew Ellement, D (Jr.) : 28 GP, 2-6-8, +6 (2010: 0-4-4, 2009: 0-7-7)
Ellement has been good this year. He scored his first career goal and he has already achieved a career high in points. He also has a positive +/- for the first time in his career. He is one of just 5 Huskies to appear in every game.
Anthony Bitetto, D (So.): 28 GP, 4-7-11, +5 (2010: 3-17-20)
Like Ellement, Bitetto’s offensive numbers are nothing to write home about. He probably won’t match his point total from last season. But Bitetto has limited his penalties minutes (66 last year, 24 this year) and he sits at +5 after being a -2 last season. And he has done this while playing with a freshman defenseman as a partner. He has played in every game since arriving on campus.
Luke Eibler, D, (So.): 27 GP, 1-5-6, +10 (2010: 3-10-13)
With the Huskies scoring less, their D-man have seen a drop in their assist totals. One thing that hasn’t dropped is Eibler’s +10 rating. After managing an impressive +12 last year, Eibler has continued to perform despite having his partnership with Bitetto split up. And like Bitetto, Eibler has been charged with bringing along a freshman defenseman. Now if he could just get those penalty minutes down a bit (52 last year, 46 this year)…
Robbie Vrolyk, F (Jr.): 24 GP, 5-3-8, -2 (2010: 1-1-2, 2009: 6-5-11)
In his previous 1.5 seasons, Vrolyk has been a lower line guy who gets some time on the PK. He still is that guy, but he has begun to turn his speed into points this season. He is on a nice hot streak now, but he has yet to do it over an extended stretch. But if he can keep the streak going, he can set a career high in everything this season.
Mike McLaughlin, F (Sr.): 23 GP, 5-9-14, -1 (2010: 11-4-15, 2009: 1-4-5, 2008: 6-5-11)
McLaughlin, the lone senior on the team, has an interesting career. He followed up a promising freshman season with a disappointing sophomore one. Last year, he came out of nowhere to grab 11 goals. This year he has fallen back to what his true fit probably is: a 3rd line guy who works hard and makes other people look good. He has been an asset on the PK and on faceoffs, and his line has been playing really strong since Winter Break. His stats may be down, but his contribution to the team is certainly not.
Justin Daniels, F (Jr.): 27 GP, 6-8-14, 0 (2010: 0-6-6, 2009: 8-7-15)
After not scoring a single goal last season, Daniels looked like a new man early on with 2 goals in the first game. Its been all downhill from there. Yes, he has improved statistically, but he has made a steady decline down the line chart and even found himself in the stands one game. For some reason, he is still on the PP unit which has accounted for 5 of his points. That will probably enable him to surpass his freshman year totals, but he has not produced like he was expected to.
Drew Daniels, D (Jr.): 28 GP, 0-5-5, -3 (2010: 3-6-9, 2009: 4-4-8)
After putting up scoring lines like a defenseman, the coaches decided to just make him one. And that hasn’t really affected his scoring in anyway. Like his twin brother, he has just not produced in any of his 3 seasons here.
Alex Tuckerman, F (Jr.): 27 GP, 3-6-9, +5 (2009: 5-7-12, 2008: 8-14-22)
Tuckerman had a great freshman season playing along side another talented freshman named Steve Quailer. Tuck looked lost without him in 2009 as he underwent to the classic Sophomore Slump that was all but a given on Greg Cronin’s teams. After missing all of last season with an injury, Tuckerman hasn’t recovered the form he had freshman year. He has had his moments this year, but overall it hasn’t been a good season from him.
Rob Dongara, F (So.): 12 GP, 1-1-2, -2 (2010: 6-8-14)
The “DongHouse” remains and now Dongara has a great view of it from the rafters. After bringing some excitement last season, Dongara became a fan favorite and even earned himself a spot on Sportscenter’s Top 10 with his Beanpot goal. This year has been terrible for him. After a slow start, he found himself out of the lineup. He has been given a few chances to get himself back in, but he has not taken advantage. His shenanigans at the Beanpot will probably keep him out of the lineup for the rest of the season, barring like 4 forwards getting hurt.