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Jason Cotton Commits to Northeastern

July 16, 2012


Jason Cotton, a center from Murphy, TX, verbally committed to Northeastern late last week.  Cotton is a ’95, who spent last season with the Colorado Thunderbirds (Midget AAA). The 17 year old is already 6’3, 178 lbs.

Despite playing just one season with the Thunderbirds, he won over the coaching staff, including head coach Angelo Ricci. “Jason is terrific at protecting the puck and creating space for himself…has an incredible shot….very skilled offensive player that learned how to play away from the puck and on the defensive side of the puck last season,” Ricci said of Cotton, who had 29 points in 40 games last season. Ricci also added that “[Cotton] was a big time performer and produced when it mattered most.”

Cotton was selected 35th overall by the Tri City Storm in this year’s USHL Entry Draft and he has made the team out of camp.  The Thunderbirds will miss him, though.  Ricci called him a Top 6 forward with a bright future.

Cotton becomes the third member of the 2014 recruiting class joining Lincoln Stars defenseman Daniel Willett and recently committed Josh Couturier.

He will also become the first Husky to come from Texas since JP Maley in 2008-2009.

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Josh Couturier Commits to Northeastern

July 16, 2012


Josh Couturier, a defenseman from Newbury, MA, verbally committed to Northeastern late last week.  Couturier is a ’95, who played for the Boston Jr. Bruins team in the Empire Hockey League for the last two seasons.  He has been with the Junior Bruins program for the last 3 seasons.   The 17 year old is listed at 6’2, 168 lbs.

Chris Masters, his coach with the Junior Bruins, describes him as a “long, lanky defenseman, with good stick skills.”   Masters mentioned “1 on 1 play and offensive instincts” as Josh’s greatest strengths.

This past season saw Couturier play in 29 games, registering 35 points for the Jr. Bruins (Empire) and it earned him 2 appearances with the Jr. Bruins EJHL team.

Couturier was selected 123rd overall by the Des Moines Buccaneers in this year’s USHL Entry Draft.   They have yet to release their final roster, but if Couturier does make the team, he will be joining another Northeastern commit, Garrett Cockerill, on the Bucs.

Couturier is the second member of the 2014 recruiting class joining Lincoln Stars defenseman Daniel Willett.

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Dylan McLaughlin No Longer Committed to Northeastern

June 16, 2012

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Dylan McLaughlin, a forward from Lancaster, NY is no longer a Northeastern recruit.   As of this time, it is unclear whether he initiated the decommittment or the coaching staff suggested that he look for another place to play.

McLaughlin (no relation to former captain Mike) is a ’95 birthdate who committed to Northeastern in February last year, while Greg Cronin was still the Head Coach.    He was playing for the Buffalo Regal Midgets at the time and expected to arrive at NU in either 2013 or 2014.    Later that spring, he was drafted in the first round of the USHL Futures Draft by the Sioux Falls Stampede.

Despite being just 16 years old, McLaughlin found himself playing in 48 games for the Stampede.  It was a tough season for McLaughlin, who managed just 7 points, and Sioux Falls, who finished in last place.  While his stats were very unimpressive, it is important to remember that McLaughlin was the youngest player on his team, and very few 16 year olds can handle the USHL.   On a better team, McLaughlin probably would not have cracked the lineup.   Returning as a 17 year old, McLaughlin looks to have a much bigger impact on an improved Sioux Falls team.    Chris Dilks, of the Western Hockey Blog, confirms this in his review of the Stampede’s Tryout Camp: “Dylan McLaughlin was the team’s top Future’s pick last pick, and could have used another year of Midget hockey, but was forced into a regular role because the team was so bad. He’s developed a lot since the camp last year though, and should have a much better year this year. ”

McLaughlin joins a lengthy list of players recruited by Cronin that will never end up at Northeastern.  Johnny Gaudreau (BC) has already made his name known to Northeastern fans.   Jon Gillies (PC)  figures to do the same this year.  Guys like Garrett Harr (WMU) and Justin Kovacs (WMU) have gone west and tormented NU fans from afar.  On the other hand, Ryan Renz and Mike McKee (WMU) were not exactly embraced by the new coaching staff.  With Renz not catching on with another team and McKee being potentially moved to forward on his USHL team, the decommits look like positives for NU.

McLaughlin is well-regarded and he will likely end up closer to that former category as opposed to the later.   But the good news is that this is truly the end of the road when it comes to Cronin.   McLaughlin was the last real Cronin recruit left.   Cam Darcy decommitted when Madigan took over, but Madigan restarted the recruitment process with him and was able to secure a commitment.   The other recruit from before Madigan’s time is Nathan Ferriero, who committed to Northeastern right after his brother Cody enrolled, which probably had a lot more to do with him coming here than Cronin’s coaching.

As of now, the Huskies have 5 players coming in 2013 (G. Cockerill, Z. Aston-Reese, J. Stevens, R. Olsson, N. Ferriero), 1 slated to come in 2014 (D. Willett) and 1 in 2015 (C. Askew).

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Ross Olsson taken by Lincoln in USHL Entry Draft

May 22, 2012


Northeastern recruit Ross Olsson was taken in the 5th round of the USHL Entry Draft, with the 73rd overall pick by the Lincoln Stars tonight.  Olsson, a forward, is a ’94 from Billerica, MA.  He is expected to enroll at Northeastern in the fall of 2013.   Olsson, who is listed at 6’4, 192 lbs played this past season for Williston Northampton Prep.  Before that, he played at Billerica Memorial, where he scored 43 points in his junior season.

Olsson said that he plans to go to the Stars preseason training camp and work his way onto the team.   If he cannot get onto the team, he will return to Williston for one more season before coming to NU.  Lincoln is projected to return about 9 forwards, so there is definitely spaces for Olsson to take.  Kirk Luedeke, a scout for Red Line Report, had this to say about Olsson on twitter:

“1st couple of steps are sluggish like a lot of big men, but he’s got a powerful stride and pretty good top speed. He’ll get better.  Raw yet, but has some nice upside. Just going to need time, patience to put it together.”

Hopefully that development can occur in Lincoln next season alongside another NU recruit Zach Aston-Reese.  Daniel Willett could also potentially make the team, as he is currently on Lincoln’s affiliate list.   Lincoln has been good to NU in the past, providing Brodie Reid, Jake Newton, Garrett Vermeersch, and Ben Oskroba in recent years, as well as Colton Saucerman and Dax Lauwers who are coming this fall.


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Dax Lauwers Commits to Northeastern

May 21, 2012


Dax Lauwers, a ’91 from Anchorage, Alaska committed to Northeastern over the weekend.  The 6’2, 220 lbs defenseman will arrive this fall as a sophomore after using a year of eligibility playing for Army in the 2010-2011 season.  He played this past season with the Lincoln Stars of the USHL.

Lauwers joined the Lincoln Stars in 2009 for his senior year of high school, where he played alongside former Husky Brodie Reid.   Lauwers posted an 0-4-4 line in 54 games with 88 PIMs and a -1 rating, which was the highest on the team among regular skaters.  The Stars finished in dead last.

Lauwers then moved on to Army to begin his college career.  He played in 33 of 35 games for Army despite being the youngest member on the team by a full 2 years.  He led the team with 53 PIMs. He finished the year with 1 goal and 2 assists.

After the season, Lauwers chose to leave Army.  “I decided to take a different route with hockey and school, so I went back to Lincoln for my 20 year old season,” said Lauwers.  And Lincoln was happy to have him.

This time around, Lauwers was named team Captain and got to play fora much more successful Stars team.  He played in all 60 regular season games for the Western Conference Champion Stars.  He had 5 assists to go with his 87 PIMs and -6 rating, but those numbers severely undersell his value to the team.   He also managed to get his first career USHL goal during the playoffs this year before his team was knocked out by Waterloo. Despite having his season end in defeat, Lauwers left Lincoln with positive memories:  “I had a great year and loved my team.  Couldn’t have asked for a better place to play Juniors.”

With his junior career over, Lauwers turned his focus to the next level and prepared for his return to the NCAA. “Once we were knocked out of the playoffs, I decided to take a look at Northeastern,” said Lauwers.   A logical choice due to the recent connection between the Stars and Northeastern.  Current Huskies Ben Oskroba and Garrett Vermeersch both played for the Stars, as well as Brodie Reid and Jake Newton who both sandwiched a year at Northeastern in between Lincoln and the professional ranks.  Lincoln’s current roster also features two Northeastern recruits, who Lauwers consulted before visiting: “Sauce (’12 recruit Colton Saucerman) and (’13 recruit Zach Aston) Reese told me great things.”  But it was his visit that really sealed the deal. “I had an awesome visit and loved the rink, facilities, staff as well as the academic side of things. (Northeastern) has everything I’m looking for in a hockey program and university. I couldn’t be more exited to get there in the fall. I’m looking forward to winning at Northeastern and being a part of a championship team.”

Lauwers is the latest name that will be thrown into the mix on defense next year.  The Huskies lost 3 out of their 4 most experience defenseman this summer, but Coach Madigan has responded by bringing in a wide range of players to compete for those spots.  Like most of Madigan’s other recruits, Lauwers is a guy who is known for his heart and leadership.   That seems to be his M.O. right now.   Last season, Madigan did not have much options on D.  This year, he will have plenty.  That means the lackadaisical play and mental mistakes will be rewarded with a seat in the rafters.  It should be a nice change of pace after watching some truly frustrating displays of apathy last year from a certain defenseman.   Lauwers also should bring the physicality that will be missed with the loss of Luke Eibler.

This should certainly mark the end of the defensive recruits for next year.  There might still be players moving on, and there could be an effort to bring another forward.  But its nice to finally be able to report on some guys coming in, instead of adding to the list of guys headed out.

Also here is a clip of Lauwers getting some good licks on former NU recruit Mike McKee.

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Updated: Hockey East Offseason Movement

May 17, 2012


Here is a list of early departures, graduating seniors and other rumors from around Hockey East.  We will continue to update this throughout the summer.   Updated 5/29

Notes: Class year listed is what they would have been next season.  Recruits are from the Chris Heisenberg list/recruiting lists from BC Hockey Blog, Boston Hockey Blog, Fear The Triangle, The Mack Report, and The UNH Men’s Hockey Blog

Northeastern Huskies

Leaving (5 F, 3 D): Rob Dongara (F, JR, Transferring),  Mike McLaughlin (F, Graduated), Justin Daniels (F, SR), Steve Quailer (F, SR), Alex Tuckerman (F, SR), Anthony Bitetto (D, JR, signed with Nashville), Drew Daniels (D, SR), Luke Eibler  (D, JR)

Incoming (3 F, 5 D) : Cam Darcy (F, USNDPT), Ryan Belonger (F, USHL), Mike McMurtry (F, CCHL), Dustin Darou (D, CCHL), Mike Gunn (D, USHL), Colton Saucerman (D, USHL), Jarrett Fennell (D, OJHL), Dax Lauwers (D, Army)

Notes: 2012-2013 Captains: Vinny Saponari (C), Ludwig Karlsson (A), Robbie Vrolyk (A)

Boston College Eagles

Leaving (4 F, 3 D, 1 G):  Paul Carey (F, Graduated), Barry Almeida (F, Graduated), Tommy Atkinson (F, Graduated), Chris Kreider (F, SR, Signed with NYR), Brian Dumoulin (D, SR, signed with Carolina), Tommy Cross (D, Graduated), Edwin Shea (D, Graduated), Chris Venti (G, Graduated)

Incoming (4 F, 4 D): Frank Vatrano (F, USNDPT), Brendan Silk (F, USNDPT), Peter McMullen (F, USHL), Evan Richardson (F, BCHL), Travis Jeke (D, Prep),  Mike Matheson (D, USHL), Ted Doherty (D, USHL), , Colin Sullivan (D, Prep)

Notes: 2012-2013 Captains: Pat Mullane (C), Steve Whitney (A), Patrick Wey (A). 

Boston University Terriers

Leaving (4 F, 1 D, 2 G): Alex Chiasson (F, SR, signed with Dallas), Chris Connolly (F, Graduated), Kevin Gilroy (F, Graduated), Ross Gaudet (F, Graduated), Adam Clendening (D, JR, signed with Chicago), Kieran Millan (G, Graduated), Grant Rollheiser (G, Graduated)

Incoming (5 F, 1, D, 2 G): Matt Lane (F, USNDPT), Wesley Myron (F, BCHL), Mike Moran (F, BCHL), Danny O’Regan (F, Prep),  Sam Kurker (F, Prep), Matt Grzelczyk (D, USNDPT) , Matthew O’Connor (G, USHL), Sean Maguire (G, BCHL)

Notes: Ryan Ruikka (D) will return for a 5th year.

Maine Black Bears

Leaving (4 F, 2 D, 1 G): Spencer Abbott (F, Graduated),  Theo Andersson (F, Graduated), Brian Flynn (F, Graduated), Matt Mangene (F, SR, Signed with Philadelphia) Will O’Neil (D, Graduated), Ryan Hegarty (D, Graduated), Josh Seeley (G, Graduated) 

Incoming (4 F, 3 D): Will Merchant (F, MN HS), Steven Swavely (F, EJHL), Devin Shore (F, OJHL), Ryan Lomberg (F, USHL),  Conor Riley (D, EJHL), Kyle Williams (D, EJHL),  Ben Hutton (D, CCHL)

Notes:  2012-2013 Tri-Captains:  Merk Nemec, Joey Diamond, Mike Cornell

Massachusetts Minuteman

Leaving (2 F, 1 D, 1 G):  TJ Syner (F, Graduating), Danny Hobbs (F, Graduating), Michael Marcou (D, Graduating), Kevin Moore (G, Graduating)

Incoming (3 F, 1 D): KJ Tiefenwerth (F, USHL), Shane Walsh (F, EJHL), Evan Stack (F, BCHL), Connor Doherty (D, EJHL)

Notes: none

UMass Lowell RiverHawks

Leaving (3 F, 1 D): Michael Budd (F, Graduating), David Vallorani (F, Graduating), Matt Ferriera (F, Graduating), Tim Corcoran (D, Graduating)

Incoming (7 F, 2 D, 1 G): AJ White (F, NAHL), Ryan McGrath (F, USHL), Adam Chapie (F, NAHL), Logan Johnston (F, BCHL), JT Stenglein (F, USHL), Michael Fallon (F, USHL), Mike Colantone (F, BCHL), Greg Amlong (D, USHL), Christian Folin (D, NAHL), Connor Hellenbuyck (G, NAHL)

Notes: Mike Conderman (F, SO) is believed to be transferring to Niagara.   Marc Boulanger (G, JR), Tyler Brickler (F, SO) and  Micki Mihailovich (D, SO) are also not expected back.

Merrimack Warriors

Leaving (5 F, 2 D, 1 G): Elliot Sheen (F, Graduating), Jeff Velleca (F, Graduating), Carter Madsen (F, Graduating), Jesse Todd (F, Graduating), Ryan Flanigan (F, Graduating), Simon Demers (D, Graduating), Karl Stollery (D, Graduating), Joe Cannata (G, Graduating)

Incoming (4 F, 3 D): Ben Bahe (F, NAHL), Vinny Scotti (F, EJHL),  John Gustafson (F, NAHL), Justin Hussar (F, USHL), Izaak Berguland  (D, BCHL), Matt Cronin (D, BCHL), Jonathan Lashyn (D, AJHL)

Notes: 2012-2013 Captains: Jordan Heywood (C), Kyle Bigos (A), Brendan Ellis (A)

New Hampshire Wildcats

Leaving (3 F, 1 D, 2 G): Stevie Moses (F, Graduating), Mike Borisenok (F, Graduating), Kevin McCarey (F, Graduating), Damon Kipp (D, Graduating), Matt DiGirolamo (G, Graduating), Tyler Scott (G, Graduating)

Incoming (5 F, 2 D, 1 G): Kyle Smith (F, EJHL), Jamie Hill (F, USHL), Maxim Gaudreault (F, USHL), Dan Correale (F, USHL), Collin MacDonald (F, EJHL), Brett Pesce (D, EJHL), Harry Quast (D, EJHL), Jamie Regan (G, EJHL)

Notes: This class is official 2012-2013 Captains: Connor Hardowa (C), Greg Burke (A), Brett Kostolansky (A).  

Providence Friars

Leaving (4 F, 4 D, 2 G): Matt Bergland (F, Graduating), Robert Maloney (F, Graduating), Andy Balysky (F, Graduating), Billy Simon (F, SR, Transferring) Daniel New (D, Graduating), David Brown (D, Graduating), Barret Kaib (D, SO, Dismissed), Craig Wyszomirski (D, SO, Transferring) Alex Beaudry (G, Graduating), Justin Gates (G, Graduating)

Incoming (7 F, 4 D, 1 G): Mark Jankowski (F, Prep Canada), Steve McParland (F, OJHL), Brooks Behling (F, NAHL), Nick Saracino (F, USHL), Paul DeJersey (F, BCHL), Brandon Tenev (F, BCHL), Brent Norris (F, CJHL), Tom Parisi (D, EJHL),  Ori Abramson (D, EJHL), Will Goss (D, Prep), John Gilmour (D, USHL), Dylan Wells (G, AJHL)

Notes: Mark Jankowski could play a year in the USHL and come in 2013.

Vermont Catamounts

Leaving (3 F, 2 D, 3 G): Sebastian Stalberg (F, SR, signed with San Jose), Matt Marshall (F, Graduating), Brett Leonard (F, Graduating), Drew MacKenzie (D, Graduating),  Lance Herrington (D, Graduating), Rob Madore (G, Graduating), John Vazzano (G, Graduating), Alex Vazzano (G, JR, Transferring) 

Incoming (7 F, 3 D, 2 G): Zegmus Girgensons (F, USHL), Robert Polesello (F, USHL), Connor Anthione (F, EJHL), Jacon Fallon (F, Michigan), Peter Massar (F, Clarkson), Ryan Rosenthal (F, Prep), Jonathan Turk (F, NAHL), Yvan Patten (D, MJHL) , Ian Spencer (D, USHL), Caylen Walls (D, AJHL), Billy Faust (G, BCHL), Brody Hoffman (G, AJHL)

Notes: 2012-2013 Captains: H.T. Lenz (C), Connor Brickley (A), Chris McCarthy (A), Tobias Nilsson-Roos (A)

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Willett Selected by Lincoln in the USHL Futures Draft.

May 1, 2012


Northeastern recruit Daniel Willett was selected by the Lincoln Stars in the second round of the 2012 USHL Futures Draft tonight.  He was the 17th overall pick.

Willett, a ’96, is a defenseman from Bayville, NY.  He committed to Northeastern back in September 2011.  He spent last year with the New Jersey Rockets playing for their MJHL team (23 games).   He was called up to their AJHL team for 3 games.  He was recently picked by the Plymouth Whalers in the OHL Draft last month after a good performance in the OHL Cup.

Willett is expected to come to Northeastern in the fall of 2014, but if he chooses to sign for Plymouth, he would be ineligible to play NCAA hockey.  Being picked in the Futures Draft means that Willett will be on the Stars’ Affiliate List for next season.

Northeastern recruit Dylan McLaughlin was selected by the Sioux Falls Stampede in the first round last year, and he appeared in 48 out of 60 games for them.  That kind of playing time is far from a guarantee, though.   Northeastern recruit Garett Cockerill was the second overall pick in the 2010 Futures Draft, but he played in just 2 games for the Muskegeon Lumberjacks in the 2010/2011 season.  He was traded to Des Moines in February 2011, but did not play a single USHL game for either team in the 2011/2012 season.  He did however play 2 games with the U-17 USNDTP.

The Lincoln Stars are no strangers to Northeastern.   Colton Saucerman will come to Northeastern next season from Lincoln.  Current Huskies Garrett Vermeersch and Ben Oskroba also played for Lincoln before coming to NU, as did Jake Newton who played 1 season with NU before signing with Anaheim.  Zach Aston-Reese, a 2013 Northeastern recruit, also plays for the Lincoln Stars.

Being picked in the Futures Draft is a good sign, but it will be up to Willett to work himself into the lineup. Still, it is a positive sign for Northeastern as it may help keep him from the OHL and help retain his NCAA eligibility.

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