Bruins Prospect Donato Remains Red-Hot In 2017-18

( Above Photo Credit:  ECAC Hockey )

By: Mark Allred               Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Boston Bruins prospect Ryan Donato continues to add to his career-high point totals this season for the Harvard University team and with a three-point game last night against the St. Lawrence Saints on the road, it doesn’t look like he’s going to slow down offensively. The 6′-0″ 181-pound forward is in a six-way tie ranked nationally in points with 20-10-30 numbers in 19 games played in 2017-18 and is ranked second in the country with a 1.57 points-per-game average.

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Donato, a Massachusetts native is currently in his junior year playing for the Crimson and his efforts on a Harvard team that’s ranked fourth in the ECAC Conference have not been overseen. The second round selection in the 2014 National Hockey League Entry Draft of the Bruins has got the attention of the United States Hockey Team that’s about to leave for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea for the games next month. With the exceptional season so far and the honor of representing his country, his fairy tale year doesn’t stop there as he’s heavily considered for the prestigious Hobey Baker Award given to the best player in Collegiate hockey.

Below in this Tweet is a way to vote as often as you’d like to see Ryan take home the ultimate NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Award.

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Last season Donato and the Crimson won the popular Beanpot Hockey Tournament defeating the Boston University Terriers and finished the year with a 28-6-2 campaign but with Ryan’s participation in the 2018 Winter Olympics, he might have to pass on potentially raising the  Beanpot again this year. In the annual tournament that consists of teams from the Boston area, the Harvard team will matchup with Boston University on Monday, February 5th but the opening day of the Olympic games start on February 9th. Even if Ryan was to participate in the first game of the Beanpot, he most likely won’t be in the country if Harvard wins it’s first game and earns the right to represent his school when the Championship game is played a week later on February 12th. The 66th annual tournament features players from Boston College, Boston University, Harvard University, and Northeastern University with all games being played at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.  For tickets and more information about the event, please click HERE to be directed to the official TD Garden website.

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So far in his NCAA career, the highly skilled and forward has appeared in 87 games for the Crimson and contributed 54-37-91 numbers in the last three seasons. With his senior year remaining after the 2017-18 season and all the great things that he’s done, it’s hard to say what he and his family are going to decide as he’ll have to make a decision over the offseason whether he’s going  turning pro or return for his final year and put his education first.

Below are highlights of last night’s 4-3 overtime victory against the St, Lawrence Saints, and Donato’s two-goal effort.

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Bruins Prospect Donato Extends NCAA Career-High Point Streak

( Above Photo Credit:  NHL .com )

By: Mark Allred               Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Boston Bruins prospect and Harvard University Junior forward Ryan Donato scored in this afternoons matchup against the Union Dutchmen to extend his NCAA career-high point streak to 14 games. The second-period man-advantage goal came in the second period at the 12:22 mark assisted by Ty Pelton-Bryce and Rielly Walsh. The 2014 second-round selection of the B’s now has 14-8-22 numbers and has scored in every game for the Crimson in the 2017-18 campaign.

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Below are a couple Tweets about news the talented Donato has made in other areas of the hockey community.

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Bruins Prospect Donato Continues Impressive Point Streak

( Above Photo Credit:  NHL .com )

By: Mark Allred         Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Harvard University forward and Boston Bruins 2014 second round pick Ryan Donato is having a career year this season and after posting 8-7-15 numbers in his first ten games, and he hasn’t lost a step after a long layoff dating back to December 2, 2017, with a game against the Princeton Tigers. The crafty, skilled player got back on the scoresheet last night in a 5-2 loss to the Umass-Lowell Riverhawks. The return to action for the Crimson took place at Burlington, Vermont’s Gutterson Fieldhouse for the Catamount Cup Holiday Tournament.

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Donato continued his NCAA career-best season as a junior at Harvard with the first goal of the game last night at the 19:28 mark of the first period to take his 2017-18 point streak to eleven games and 9-7-16 numbers within that timeframe. Below are the highlights courtesy of the Havard University Athletics youtube Channel.

The Crimson team is back in action tonight for game number two of the Catamount Cup as they’re set to matchup against Hockey East Conference University of Vermont. Harvard holds the sixth place spot in the ECAC standings with a 4-3-0 Conference record and 4-6-1 Overall record. They are 2-1-0 at home and 2-4-1 on the road and are not currently ranked Nationally in the top 20.

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Boston Bruins Prospect Update Nov. 26th-Dec. 2nd 2017

( Above Photo Credit:  NHL .com )

By: Mark Allred        Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Bruins Prospect Update Nov. 26th-Dec. 2nd 2017

American Hockey League – Providence Bruins

The Providence Bruins played in three games last week going 3-0. The week started on Sunday, November 26th with a 2-1 shootout victory on the road over the Charlotte Checkers. Baby B’s goals scored by Colton Hargrove (6th) on the power-play and the shootout winner from Ryan Fitzgerald. Goaltender on-loan Jordan Binnington got the win in goal stopping 18 of 19 shots.
On Friday, December 1st The Bruins played host to the Binghamton Devils at the Dunk and walked away with a 3-2 win in front of the home crowd. B’s goals scored by
Kenny Agostino (5th) Ryan Fitzgerald on the power-play (6th) and Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson on the power-play (6th). Zane McIntyre got the start in goal making 29 saves on 32 shots.
On Saturday, December 2nd the B’s played the second game of back-to-back home games against the Binghamton team beating the Devils by the score of 4-2. Bruins goals scored by Zack Senyshyn (3rd) Jordan Szwarz (6th & 7th) and Rob O’Gara his first of the season. Goaltender on-loan Jordan Binnington got the job in the crease on this night making 25 saves on 27 shots.

East Coast Hockey League – Atlanta Gladiators

Goaltender Dan Vladar started in two games last week beginning on Sunday, November 26th with a home game against the Jacksonville IceMen and only had to make three saves before leaving the game after the first period for precautionary reasons. The Gladiators managed to pull off the 4-2 victory even though the 2015 third round pick had to leave the game.
On Friday, December 1st Vladar and his Glads team lost 5-3 to the Florida Everblades on home ice. Vladar stopped 26 off 30 shots.

Ontario Hockey League – Oshawa Generals

2017 second round pick Jack Studnicka has been red hot lately, and that continued with three games last week with three games scoring 3-2-5 numbers but snapped a seven-game point streak with no points against the Windsor Spitfires on December 2nd. Jack has 10-19-29 numbers in 29 games this season.

NCAA Men’s Hockey

Jeremy Swayman – University of Maine
The 2017 fourth-round selection played in two games last week both against the University of Vermont. The first was a 2-2 tie making 22 saves on 24 shots on Friday, December, 1st.
The second game of the weekend was on Saturday, December 2nd once again against the Catamounts this time with a huge 6-2 win for the Black Bears stopping 39 of 41 shots. Swayman is now 5-3-1 on the NCAA season dropping his goals-against-average down to 2.38, and .925 save percentage.

Ryan Donato – Harvard University
Ryan played in two games last week scoring a hat trick on Friday, December 1st against the Quinnipiac Bobcats and added a goal and an assist on Saturday, December 2nd against the Princeton Tigers. Donato now has a point in every game played so far this season which is a 10 game point streak. He now has 8-7-15 numbers in 2017-18.

Trent Frederic – University of Wisconsin
After going pointless over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, the former 2016 Bruins first-round pick got back to work offensively in both games against the University of Minnesota Gophers. On Friday, December 1st he had a goal and followed that up on Saturday, December 2nd with a goal and an assist. Trent now has 8-8-16 numbers in 19 games played.

Bruins Prospect Update Nov 19th-Nov. 25th 2017

( Above Photo Credit:   NHL .com )

By: Mark Allred          Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Bruins Prospect Update Nov 19th-Nov. 25th 2017

American Hockey League – Providence Bruins

The Baby B’s played three games last week starting off on Sunday, November 19th with a 4-1 win over the Hershey Bears at the Dunk in Providence. B’s goals scored by Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson (5th) Colby Cave (2nd) Austin Czarnik PPG (5th) Colton Hargrove (4th). Goaltender on-loan Jordan Binnington got the start making 17 saves on 18 shots.

On Wednesday, November 22nd the B’s put together a 2-1 overtime victory on the road against the Binghamton Devils. Bruins got a shorthanded goal by Kevin Porter his first of the season and the extra session winner by Colton Hargrove (5th). Zane McIntyre got the start in goal making 27 saves on 28 shots.

Saturday night the Baby B’s traveled to Charlotte, North Carolina to play the Checkers and failed to show up against a team they haven’t played since 2011 losing by the score of 8-2. Providence goals scored by Ryan Fitzgerald (5th) and a power-play goal scored by Kenny Agostino (4th). Zane McIntyre got the second straight start of the week giving up all eight goals and was far from the focus of blame in the weekend contest making 35 saves on 43 shots.

East Coast Hockey League

Dan Vladar – Atlanta Gladiators

Goaltender Vladar appeared in two games last week starting on Sunday, November 19th against the South Carolins Stingrays losing 3-2 in overtime with the Bruins 2015 third round pick making 30 saves on 33 shots in front of the home crowd.

Wednesday, November 23rd the Gladiators once again played the South Carolina team but this time losing by the score of 2-1 in regulation. Vladar stopped 22 of 24 shots in the home game. Vladar is now 4-3-1 with a 2.86 goals-against-average, and .908 save percentage in nine games this season.

Ontario Hockey League

Jack Studnicka- Oshawa Generals

2017 second-round pick Studnicka has been back on track offensively getting points in all three games last week to tie his 2017-18 season point streak at five games. In 25 games played this season he has 7-17-24 numbers.

NCAA Men’s Hockey

Jeremy Swayman – University of Maine

The 2017 fourth-round selection played in two games last week as he and his Black Bear team played over in Belfast, Northern Ireland for the third annual Friendship Four Tournament. The freshman Anchorage, Alaska native gave up two goals making 34 saves on Friday, November 24th 3-0 loss to Providence College.

On Saturday, November 25th against RPI University, Swayman gave up another two goals making 18 saves for a Black Bear 4-2 victory. In eight games this season Jeremy is now 4-3-0 with a 2.50 goals-against-average, and .921 save percentage.

Ryan Donato – Harvard University

Ryan played in one game last week contributing an assist in a 4-4 overtime tie against the Boston College Eagles. Donato has now notched at least one point in all eight games played this year and has 4-6-10 numbers.

Cameron Hughes – University of Wisconsin

Cameron played in one game last week in a 4-2 win over Mercyhurst College and added an assist to bring his 2017-18 season-high point streak to three games. Hughes has 6-6-12 numbers and is one point behind fellow Bruins prospect and Badgers teammate Trent Frederic (13 Points) for fourth on the team.

Boston Bruins Prospect Update – Week Of 11/12/17 to 11/19/17

( Above Photo Credit:  NHL .com )

By: Mark Allred         Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Bruins Prospect Update Nov 12th-Nov. 18th 2017

American Hockey League – Providence Bruins

The Providence Bruins played two games last week starting on Sunday, Nov 12th on the road in Springfield Massachusetts with a 4-3 overtime loss to the hand of the Thunderbirds. Baby B’s goal scorers were Ryan Fitzgerald, Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson, and 1st ever pro goal from Emil Johansson. Have to mention 2015 first round pick Zach Senyshyn as he assisted on all three Bruins goals and has been playing very well as of late. Goaltender on Loan Jordan Binnington stopped 32 of 36 Thunderbirds shots.

On Friday night November 17th at the Dunk in Providence, Rhode Island the Baby B’s hosted the Hershey Bears and were thoroughly outplayed in a 4-1 regulation loss. Justin Hickman with the only Bruins goal on the night which was unassisted. Zane McIntyre who’s been struggling lately took the loss stopping 21 of 24 shots.
The Providence team is now sitting in the fourth position in the Atlantic Division with a 7-5-2 record with 18 points and get back to work with a 1:05 game again at the Dunk against the same Bears team they played Friday night.

Bruins Prospect Jakub Zboril has been out of action since the November 11th matchup where he took a substantial hit to the head from WBS Penguins player Andrey Pedan who was assessed a minor penalty for the hit and a five-minute fighting major as teammate Kenny Agostino came to the defense of his defenseman. Zboril has missed the last two games with an upper-body injury. Pedan, on the other hand, was suspended the following Monday for four games by the American Hockey League for a Charging major which resulted in a head injury. We hope Jakub returns quickly as he’s been through concussion protocol, but his return remains uncertain.

East Coast Hockey League – Atlanta Gladiators

Goaltender Dan Vladar only appeared in one game for the Gladiators last week and took a beating in the Wednesday, November 15th morning road game against the Greenville Swamp Rabbits in front of a packed house of school children stopping 36 of 42 Greenville shots taking the 6-3 loss. Vladar is now 4-2-1 on the season with a 3.10 goals-against-average, and .906 save percentage.

Ontario Hockey League – Oshawa Generals

2017 second round pick Jack Studnicka snapped his 12 goalless streak and recent five-game pointless streak on Thursday night November 16th with a goal and an assist in a 4-1 win over the Peterborough Petes team. The next night on Friday, November 17th he had a shorthanded goal in a 4-2 loss to the Mississauga Steelheads and now has 6-14-20 numbers through 22 games.

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League – Saint John Sea Dogs

Send Dogs forward Cedric Pare easily had his best game of the 2017-18 season last week on Friday, November 17th as he contributed four points in a 7-2 win over the Halifax Moosehead’s. Both goals from Pare were scored on the power play and was named the second star of the game. Pare who missed close to two-weeks of action with a minor injury before returning to action against the Moosehead’s now has 7-5-12 numbers in 21 games played this season.

NCAA Men’s Hockey

Trent Frederic- University of Wisconsin

The former 2016 first round selection snapped a career-high four games pointless slump on Friday night November 17th when he collected a goal and an assist in a 7-3 win over Michigan. On Saturday, November 18th once again matching up against the Michigan team he added an assist in the 4-4 overtime tie as he seems to be back on track offensively. Trent now has 6-7-13 numbers in 15 games this season and is tied for first in scoring with teammate Ryan Wagner.

Cameron Hughes – University of Wisconsin

The Badgers Captain also had a great weekend alongside Trent Frederic with a goal on Friday night and Saturday night against Michigan. The Senior forward now has 6-4-10 numbers in 15 games played.

Ryan Donato- Harvard University

Ryan played in two games last week scoring a goal on Friday night November 17th against Minnesota and added an assist in Saturday nights repeat matchup against the Gophers. Donato now has points in every game he’s played so far this season and is leading his Crimson team in scoring with 4-5-9 numbers.

Jeremy Swayman – University of Maine

The 2017 goaltender selected in the fourth round by the Bruins appeared in one game last week on Friday, November 17th stopping 40 of 42 shots in the 5-2 victory over the Boston University Terriers. Swayman, a freshman this season has appeared in six games posting a record of 3-2-0 with a goals-against-average of 2.71 and .919 save percentage.

Bruins Prospect Donato Continues Impressive Streak

( Above Photo Credit:  Chowdaheadz Blog )

By: Mark Allred            Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Boston Bruins prospect and Harvard University forward Ryan Donato continues to be a force for his Crimson team this year after his first six games to begin the 2017-18 NCAA Men’s Hockey season. The 6′-1″ 181-pound center and Boston native added to his career-high six-game point streak last night with a third-period goal in a 4-2 loss to the Minnesota Gophers.

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The 21-year-old Donato is currently in his junior year at Harvard, and in74 career games for the Crimson has 31-38-69 numbers and leads his team with eight points this year. The crafty forward was selected in the second round of the 2014 National Hockey League Entry Draft and has a big decision coming up during the hockey offseason. It’s very common that hockey players at the NCAA level around their junior year to sign with the team that selected them and incorporate that individual into the minor-pro levels of the organization. Just from what’s being said throughout the Boston hockey scene, it’s highly likely the son of former Bruins player and current Harvard Head Coach Ted Donato might want to complete his education and return for his Senior year.

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Another year of collegiate hockey might be beneficial to not only the young talented forward but the Boston Bruins organization when you look at the developing depth in Providence and the yearly insertions of replenishing the prospect pool. Having not had many opportunities to watch the games he’s played in a while appearing for his Crimson team, I’ve seen many great attributes on display from the past three to four development camps either at the Ristucccia Memorial Arena in Wilmington, Massachusetts, or the new Warrior Ice Arena in Brighton, Mass.

Donato is also the type of player that could be on the same road as fellow prospect Anders Bjork followed to the NHL as the Bruins look to add more younger talent to a league that’s seemingly getting faster and more skill year-by-year. Regardless of the if and when, Ryan will be a valuable asset no matter where he lands in professional hockey either making the leap to the highest level in the world or continue to build character with a team like the Providence Bruins to continue his development for future placement on the Boston roster.

Donato looks to add to his streak tonight as the Harvard team is set to play the Minnesota Gophers team again tonight at 8pm. Information to keep up to date information about tonight’s contest can be found below from the official Havard Men’s Hockey Twitter account.

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Boston Bruins Prospect Update

( Above Photo Credit:  NHL .com )

By: Mark Allred       Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Since I do so much research on the prospects in the Boston Bruins organization for our Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast, I thought why not write an article about all the information I gather every week. This is generally focusing on B’s prospects in North America but going to add those who are also a part of the organization while playing in Europe. Hope you all enjoy these as I try to deliver the best updates I can for those interested.

Bruins Prospect Update Nov 5th-Nov. 11th 2017

American Hockey League – Providence Bruins

The Providence Bruins played two games last week starting on Sunday, Nov 5th at the Dunk in Providence Rhode, Island. Zane McIntyre got the start in his return to the AHL to get in some game action as he’s been up and down Interstate 95 on emergency situations. McIntyre gave up all six goals in a 6-0 shutout loss against the visiting Bridgeport Sound Tigers stopping 31 of 37 shots.
The second game of the week came on Saturday, Nov 11th with a 4-3 overtime loss to the WBS Penguins who only needed 20 seconds into the extra frame to seal the victory. Baby B’s got goals from Colby Cave and two from Ryan Fitzgerald.  The Providence team is currently in 4th in the Atlantic Division with a 7-4-22-0 record and 15 points after 13 games played this season.

East Coast Hockey League – Atlanta Gladiators

Goaltender Dan Vladar appeared in back-to-back games last week starting on Friday, Nov. 10th against the South Carolina Stingrays where he gave up two goals but finished strong helping the Glads to a 3-2 overtime win stopping 29 of 31 shots.
The 2015 third-round pick of the NHL Bruins was back in the crease on Saturday night Nov. 11th against the same Stingrays team stopping 30 of 31 shits to help his Glads team to the 2-1 overtime victory. With the two wins over the weekend, the Czech Republic native extends his career high ECHL winning streak to four games and has a 4-1-0-0 record, a 2.58 goals-against-average, and .918 save percentage.

Ontario Hockey League – Oshawa Generals

2017 second round pick Jack Studnicka is currently on a four-game pointless streak and doesn’t have a goal in his last 11 games. The Center and his Gens team play the Ottawa 67’s tonight and hope to have a better update during next seeks show of his efforts in the OHL.

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League – Saint John Sea Dogs

Per Kevin Chambers and Craig Eagles who both write about the QMJHL, 2017 6th round pick Cedric Pare last action was on the third of November where he’s believed to have got a minor injury that’s held him out of the last 4 games. We hope Cedric gets back to action soon as he was playing much better before the injury.

Western Hockey League- Brandon Wheat Kings

Boston Bruins, 2017 seventh round defensive selection Daniel Bukac has been out of action since the start of the 2017-18 season and still recovering from offseason surgery. The 6’-5” 207-pound blueliner has been skating during non-team practices per Brandon Sun beat writer Perry Bergson and seems to be anxious for a return from his Twitter activity.

NCAA Men’s Hockey

Trent Frederic– University of Wisconsin
The former 2016 first round selection is riding a career-high four games without a single point and no goals in his last five games. In 13 games played Trent has 5-5-10 numbers and looks to snap his offensive struggles with back-to-back games starting this Friday night against Michigan.

Ryan Lindgren– Minnesota
Played in two games over the weekend but only got on the scoresheet on Saturday night when he scored his second goal of the season for the Gophers. In 12 games this year the sophomore has four points, but with his shutdown defensive style, he’s playing well regardless.

Ryan Donato– Harvard University
Ryan played in two games last week scoring a goal against Colgate on Friday night and added an assist on Saturday night against Cornell. Donato now has a point in every game this season and is 3-4-7 in five appearances.

Bruins Prospect Donato With A Big Night Against Union

donato

Above Photo Credit:   The Harvard Crimson

By Mark Allred     Follow Me On Twitter  @BlackAndGold277

Harvard University forward and Boston Bruins prospect Ryan Donato had a four-goal game tonight over Union College. The Boston Bruins drafted the 6′-1″ 181-pound sophomore center in the second round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. A native of Boston, Massachusetts and is the son of former Bruins forward Ted Donato who’s the current Head Coach of the Crimson.

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In 25 games played this season he’s contributed 15-10-25 numbers, and in 57 career NCAA games has 28-18-46 totals. With his four-goal effort tonight he snaps a three-game goalless streak and is 6-2-8 in his last ten games. Harvard has five games remaining in the 2016-17 regular season so there’s a good chance he could challenge teammate Alexander Kerfoot for the points lead currently at 30.

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The Crimson’s next game is this Monday night as they challenge Boston University in the 65th Beanpot Championship. Game time is 7:30 pm from the TD Garden and can be seen on NESN.

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Bruins Prospects In The 2017 Beanpot Tournament

beanpot

Photo Credit Above:  WTBU Sports

By Mark Allred   Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277 

It’s that time of the year again when the top men’s collegiate hockey teams in the Boston area do battle for the rights to call their team the city’s best until next February. The Beanpot Tournament is set to begin its 65th year of competition tonight at TD Garden with puck drop at 5 pm involving 5th ranked Harvard University Crimson and unranked Northeastern University Huskies. Later tonight at 8 pm, last year’s tournament champion and 8th ranked Boston College matchup with 3rd ranked and last year’s runner-up Boston University Terriers.

This year’s festivities will be represented by five Boston Bruins prospects playing for their respected NCAA Division 1 teams in hopes of raising the prestigious silver pot that so many current and former National Hockey League players have had the honor of winning in the past. Even local names from the past that was born and breed in Massachusetts participated in the famed tourney including forward Ted Drury (HU), goaltender Tim Marshall (NU), defenseman Jack O’Callahan (BU), forward Bob Sweeney (BC), have all had the pleasure of winning the annual collegiate hockey classic and have paved the way for future state born players to do the same.

Below are this year’s Beanpot participants that happen to have ties to the Boston Bruins organization as they continue to develop in the NCAA ranks. Players below are in alphabetical order according to school name.

Boston College

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Ryan Fitzgerald (BC - 19) - The Boston College Eagles defeated the visiting University of Wisconsin Badgers 9-2 on Friday, October 18, 2013, at Kelley Rink in Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

Ryan Fitzgerald (BC – 19) – The Boston College Eagles defeated the visiting University of Wisconsin Badgers 9-2 on Friday, October 18, 2013, at Kelley Rink in Conte Forum in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

Ryan Fitzgerald – The 5′-11″ 185-pound center was selected in the fourth round of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft is currently in his senior year with his Eagles team. Most likely will sign a free agent entry-level contract at the end of this school year and be an essential addition to the AHL’s Providence Bruins team next year. In 141 career NCAA games at Boston College, the North Reading, Massachusetts native has contributed 61-61-122 numbers, and with seven games remaining in the NCAA regular season, he has the potential to add more points before transitioning his game to the minor-pro level.

The 2016-17 season has been a difficult one for Ryan due to injuries and will most likely not come close to his NCAA career best 24-23-47 totals he contributed in his junior year. This year in 23 games played he has 7-14-21 numbers which so far are career lows. Fitzgerald is ranked fifth on the Eagles team with 21 points (Leader 26 points) and is ranked 19th in Hockey East scoring in conference games only. In his last five games, the BC Assistant Captain has two goals and two assists.

His size may be an issue as he rises through the Bruins developmental system, but his speed and creativity should not be overlooked. His vision and play in all three zones and forechecking ability is one of his better attributes. He’s got a hard shot and quick release with an uncanny knack to get a quick shot on goal while his legs are in full motion.

Boston University (2)

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forsbacka-karlsson

Above Photo Credit:  richimagesphotography .com

Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson – A native of Stockholm, Sweden, the 6′-1″ 192-pound center is a player Boston Bruins fans should look forward to in the next few seasons. Many scouts have compared him to current Bruins center Patrice Bergeron as he plays a very defensive style game as a three-zone forward. Selected in the second round of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, the creative forward has the ability to control the play with his exceptional acceleration and ability to slow the game to look for a teammate for an offensive scoring chance.

Even tho he’s a pass first type of player he also doesn’t shy away from using his outstanding hockey IQ to execute a scoring chance when the time is right. In 66 career NCAA games with BU, the 20-year-old has 20-34-54 numbers with seven regular season games remaining. This season the sophomore forward has 10-14-24 totals in 27 games and is ranked third on the team with 24 points (Leader 29). This season the crafty center is ranked third in scoring on the Terriers team and 55th in Hockey East Conference games.

Many scouts in the area have mentioned he could use a few more pounds to bulk up and his consistency can be an issue at times, but nothing Bruins fans should be concerned with at this point in his development. He’s a player that can create offensive schemes in all three zones with his vision and exceptional passing skills. With two years left of school I’d like to see him stay and get a solid education while he continues his development in the NCAA but with players like Danton Heinen, the Bruins team could come calling sooner than later with an entry-level cash offer he might not be able to refuse.

mcavoy

Above Photo Credit:  College Hockey Inc.

Charlie McAvoy – The 2016 first round selection of the Bruins is in his sophomore year at BU and is having another outstanding season manning the blueline in Hockey East. The Long Beach, New York native is already turning heads with scouts and hockey personalities alike with his strong defensive play and progression in his continued development. McAvoy a 6′-1″ 211-pound rugged defenseman has all the making of an exceptional NHL career. In 66 career games at BU, he has 6-34-40 numbers in two years of service.

This season in 26 games, McAvoy has 3-12-15 numbers, and with time missing due to participation in a 2017 World Junior gold medal effort from him and his United States team, he could’ve broken his rookie numbers he had a year ago as a freshman with 25 points. No matter what his point production looks like from here on out, he’s working hard on other areas of his game such as body strength and being a threat to any opposing player entering the defensive zone.

McAvoy is a hybrid type of defenseman in my opinion and has the ability to be a reliable stay-at-home player with superb upside in joining the rush offensively. His one-time on the power-play is a lethal weapon at the at the center of the point or the top of the faceoff circle sneaking in unmolested. This season he’s ranked sixth in points on the Terriers team and with seven-game to go in this season could add a few more numbers even tho he currently has three points in his last ten games.

Harvard University (2)

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Ryan Donato – The 6′-1″ 181-pound sophomore forward has already tied his career high in point in his young college hockey year at 21 points. With seven games remaining for him and his Crimson team, the second round selection of the Bruins in 2014 has appeared in 55 games for Harvard and has posted 24-18-42 numbers in his time there. A native of Boston, Massachusetts and is the son of former NHL Bruins player and current head coach of the Ivy League institution Ted Donato who is also a Harvard alumni and had an eight-year tour with the B’s as a player.

This season the center is 11-10-21 in 23 games played and is ranked 5th on the teams in points and 3rd in goals scored. A good all-around player at the NCAA level he does have a few thing to work on and one of those issues is his skating with the puck while keeping possession. The other areas of his game such as speed, vision, and endurance are second to none but like all developing talent would benefit greatly by adding pounds to his frame.

Donato has a great eye around the net with his offensive abilities and can always be relied on for finding and capitalizing on loose pucks in the opposing crease. Another player with tremendous upside for his size and could be a value to the depth of the Bruins franchise as he rises to the NHL level.

Kyle Rankin (Princeton - 19) and Wiley Sherman (Harvard - 25) battle in front of the net.

Kyle Rankin (Princeton – 19) and Wiley Sherman (Harvard – 25) battle in front of the net.

Wiley Sherman – “The Shermanator.” is a rugged defenseman who was selected in the fifth round of the NHL Entry Draft in 2013 and is presently in his junior year at Harvard. A 6′-7″ 220-pound Greenwich, Connecticut blueliner has appeared in 91 career NCAA games and has contributed 19 points with his time with the Crimson. This season he had only six assists and had a career year last season where he netted 4-6-10 numbers in his sophomore year.

Wiley is another big project for this Bruins franchise as they continue to develop bigger stronger defenseman to get back to the NHL-best in all defensive categories. Sherman reminds me od a Rob O’Gara player in the AHL and Adam McQuaid in the NHL. More or less a stay at home defenseman he has the ability to deliver bone-crunching hits like MvAvoy but has a tough time recovering from getting back into the play. A continued work in progress in my opinion and could serve the Providence Bruins very well in the AHL after he finishes his senior year next season.