Entries in Kingston Frontenacs (31)

Monday
Mar032014

OHL's Draft Eligible Players - Week 24

by Dominic Tiano (@DominicTiano)

Alex Nedeljkovic, Plymouth Whalers

Week 24 of the Ontario Hockey League season is complete and we enter the final two weeks of the regular season and the battle for the season’s three stars is up for grabs.

Each week throughout the season a group of OHL writers and independent scouts vote on the OHL’s three stars – among those eligible for the National Hockey League Draft. At the end of the season, using a scoring system, we then select the three stars for the season.

But until then, let’s take a look at the three stars from last week:

1st Star – Alex Nedeljkovic – Plymouth Whalers: In three starts Nedeljkovic went 2-0-1 with a .97 goals against average and .973 save percentage with one shutout.  On Tuesday, Nedeljkovic stopped 35 of 37 shots to lead his squad to a 4-2 victory over the Kitchener Rangers. Friday’s outing saw him lose 2-1 in a shootout to the Barrie Colts. While he was only able to stop 1 of three in the shootout he stopped 50 of 51 through regulation and overtime to give his squad a chance to win. On Saturday he stopped all 26 shots he faced in a 5-0 win over the Windsor Spitfires to earn his first shutout of the season. He was named the games third star.

2nd Star – Sam Bennett – Kingston Frontenacs: In three games last week Bennett scored four goals and added 2 assists and finished a plus 4. He scored three times and added an assist on Friday in a 10-2 thrashing of the Belleville Bulls and was named the game’s first star. In the rematch on Saturday, Bennett added another goal as the Fronts defeated the Bulls again, this time by a score of 5-2. Sunday saw Bennett record an assist in a 3-2 shootout loss to the Oshawa Generals.

3rd Star – Robby Fabbri – Guelph Storm: In four games Fabbri three goals while assisting on three others. In a 6-3 victory over the Owen Sound Attack on Monday, Fabbri had a goal and assist. He repeated his output on Thursday in a 5-4 win over the North Bay Battalion and was named the game’s first star. On Friday, while posting the same numbers, it wasn’t enough as the Sudbury Wolves defeated the Storm 6-5. He was held off the board on Sunday, including in the shootout as the Soo Greyhounds fell 4-3 to the Storm.  

Monday
Dec232013

OHL Draft Eligible 3 Stars - Week 14

by Dominic Tiano (@DominicTiano)

Roland McKeown, Kingston FrontenacsThe holiday break is upon us and week 14 of the Ontario Hockey League season has come to a close marking the unofficial half way point of the season. That means it’s time to look at the 3 stars for last week among players eligible for the National Hockey League Draft.

1st Star – Roland McKeown – Kingston Frontenacs:The Frontenacs’ defenseman scored three goals and added four assists while finishing with a plus 5 in two games. On Thursday, McKeown scored once and added two assists as Kingston beat the hometown Peterborough Petes 4-1. McKeown was named the games third star. On Friday, McKeown added two more goals and two assists as Kingston travelled to Ottawa and beat the 67’s 8-5 and was named the game’s first star.

2nd Star – Cristiano DiGiacinto – Windsor Spitfires: In the only game of the week for the Spitfires, DiGiacinto scored three goals and added an assist and finished with a plus 4 as Windsor defeated the Saginaw Spirit 11-6. DiGiacinto was named the game’s first star.

3rd Star - Andrew Mangiapane – Barrie Colts: The Colts also played just a single game and Manqiapane scored twice and added two assists in that game as the Colts defeated the Sarnia Sting 7-2. He was named the game’s second star. This is the second time Mangiapane has been named one of our three stars for the week. 

Tuesday
Oct222013

NHL Draft Eligible 3 Stars - Week 5

by Dominic Tiano (@DominicTiano)

Another Ontario Hockey League week has come to a close and there were some outstanding performances around the league. But there can only be 3 stars and this has been one of the closest votes I’ve been a part of. So here are the three stars for the week ending October 20, 2013.

Spencer Watson, Kingston Frontenacs1st Star – Spencer Watson – Kingston Frontenacs: Watson missed the opening game of the week, his third consecutive game, but returned in fashion against the Kitchener Rangers. He scored twice and added two assists in a 6-2 Frontenac’s victory. The Rangers led 1-0 when Watson scored the next two to put the Fronts up for good. He was named the games third star. He followed that up with another goal and two assists in a 5-4 overtime loss to the Owen Sound Attack. He assisted on the game tying, shorthanded goal with 34 seconds remaining to force overtime.

2nd Star – Alex Nedeljkovic – Plymouth Whalers: Nedeljkovic continues to be a bright spot for the Whalers stopping 117 of 125 shots for a .936 save percentage last week. He stopped 33 of 35 for a 3-2 overtime victory over the North Bay Battalion and earned the games second star. That was followed by a 43 save performance in a 3-2 win over the Sudbury Wolves. That included 20 saves in the third to preserve the win. He was named first star of the game. The week ended by stopping 41 of 45 shots in a 4-2 loss to the Barrie Colts.

3rd Star – Anthony DeAngelo – Sarnia Sting: DeAngelo had an outstanding week scoring 2 goals and adding 6 assists in 3 games. The defenseman scored once and added 3 assists in a 5-3 win over the Saginaw Spirit and was named the games 3rd star. That was followed by a lone assist in a 4-2 loss to Owen Sound. He finished up the week with a goal and two assists in a 5-3 win in the rematch with Saginaw. He was again named 3rd star in the game.

Sunday
Oct132013

NHL Draft Eligible 3 Stars - Week 4

by Dominic Tiano (@DominicTiano)

Its Thanksgiving weekend and week 4 of the Ontario Hockey League season comes to an end with week 5 beginning immediately on Monday. With that comes OHL Writers draft eligible 3 stars for the week.

Sam Bennett, Kingston Frontenacs1st Star – Brendan Perlini – Niagara Ice Dogs: Coming off being named 3rd star in week three, Perlini and the Ice Dogs only played one game last week and what a game he had. Perlini scored 3 goals and added 2 assists in Niagara’s 7-2 win over the Owen Sound Attack. His 1st goal of the game proved to be the game winner. Owen Sound scored to take away a chance at a natural hat trick, but he scored the next 2 to put the game out of reach – both coming on the powerplay. Perlini was in on the first 5 Ice Dogs goals. He was named the game’s first star.

2nd Star – Charlie Graham – Belleville Bulls: Wins have eluded Graham early in the season but no goaltender is even close to facing the amount of rubber he does and last week was no different. In 2 2/3 games he faced 156 shots, stopping 142 of them. He stopped 41 of 45 shots in a 4-2 loss to the Windsor Spitfires to start the week. He then stopped 34 of 39 in two periods in a loss to the London Knights where he was tremendous despite the score. He finally recorded his first win when the Bulls defeated Guelph 6-5. He stopped an amazing 67 of 72 shots and was the game’s first star.

3rd Star- Sam Bennett – Kingston Frontenacs: Bennett and the Frontenacs were involved in two blowout games last week coming out on opposite ends. In a 10-1 thrashing of the Sudbury Wolves Bennett scored twice while being named the game’s first star. The Fronts took a 9-3 shellacking at the hands of the Guelph Storm just two days later. He finished with a goal and an assist and didn’t give up until th final buzzer. 

Thursday
Aug292013

Optimism in Kingston

by John Duncan (@FrontsFocus)

Kingston's Roland McKeown looks to have a strong season for the Frontenacs this season.

The Kingston Frontenacs are on the eve of opening up their training camp, and have fewer question marks than in past years at this time. The Fronts will look to improve on their 7th place Eastern Conference finish last year, and 4 game playoff loss to the Barrie Colts in the first round.

Gone are overagers, captain Cody Alcock, Ryan Hanes, and goaltender Mike Morrison. Alcock was tied for 4th in team scoring with 43 points (20g, 23a). Defenseman, Hanes played 9 games for the Kitchener Rangers last season before joining the Fronts for the remainder of his last OHL season. Morrison was the workhorse in goal for the Fronts, appearing in 56 regular season, and all 4 playoff games for Kingston.  The 3 graduating Fronts will be playing CIS hockey this Fall. Alcock (Laurier) will be trying to put the puck past Morrison (Waterloo), while being defended by Hanes (Waterloo).

June 3rd may prove to be the most important day in the off-season for the Fronts, as they traded for Plymouth's OA goalkeeper, Matt Mahalak. Mahalak played in 97 regular season games for the Whalers in the last 3 seasons, posting a winning record of 49-27-5-6. Playoffs have been a different story, however. He has only appeared in 5 playoff games (0-4) over 3 seasons, backing up Scott Wedgewood in 2011, and 2012, and Alex Nedeljkovic last season. Two 3rd Round picks was enough to pry Mahalak out of Plymouth, and he will be looking to impress the Carolina Hurricanes, who drafted him in the 6th Round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.  By picking up Mahalak, Kingston has given up on 93 goalie, Colin Furlong. Coach Gill wants his backup to play more games this season than last, presumably to allow the starter to be fresher for the stretch run. It looks like Lucas Peressini, acquired from Saginaw on January 1st (although he played in the OJHL for Newmarket last year) will be given an opportunity in camp to compete with this year's (3rd Round) draft pick, Jeremy Helvig. Both are big, athletic goalkeepers, who project to be Number 1 goalies in the OHL, if they continue to progress in their development. Joel Howard was drafted in the 3rd Round in 2012, and could be in the conversation of future Frontenac goalkeepers.

 

On defense, the Fronts' lineup will look very much the same as it did last season. Michael Moffat dished out some big hits last season, and will be back on the blueline as an overage player this year. Mikko Vainonen was Kingston's only NHL drafted player (Nashville 4th Round) and became a force in the 2nd half of the season. Vainonen's value to the team was really felt after he was suspended for 10 games for a hit on Belleville's Scott Simmonds. The Fronts lost 9 of those 10 games. The Finnish Import will play big minutes, for the Fronts,  once again, after he returns from Nashville's camp. Roland McKeown projects to be a 1st Round NHL draft pick in 2014. He is big, mobile, and possesses a pro shot already. He was named to the OHL's All Rookie team last year, and played big minutes for Team Canada's U-18 team which won gold in Russia. Warren Steele played in all but one of Kingston's games last year, and was third in defenseman scoring, behind Moffat, and McKeown.  He will be a top 4 defenseman this year for the Fronts. Dylan DiPerna and Matt Watson (Spencer's twin brother), a pair of 96s, will no doubt round out the six defensemen on the team. DiPerna was drafted in the 2nd Round of the OHL Priority Selection, one spot ahead of Spencer Watson and played a regular shift, for the most part, last season. Matt appeared in 8 games for the Fronts, over Christmas time, last season, while his brother Spencer, Roland McKeown, and Sam Bennett were off competing for Ontario in the U17s. Matt, who played the majority of his season for Strathroy in Jr B, didn't look out of place, and should slide into the 6th spot on defense. This year's draft picks, Kris Myllari and Josh Gagne impressed recently at the U-17 development camp in Oshawa, but baring injury to one of Kingston's top 6, will likely not make the Frontenacs this year.

Up front, Kingston will be dynamic.  Spencer Watson lead Team Canada in scoring at the recent IIHF U-18 tournament, with 10 points, including 3 assists in the Gold Medal clinching 4-0 victory over the Americans. He was tied for 4th in team scoring last season, and ranked 8th amongst OHL rookies, with 23 goals and 20 assists. Right behind him was, IIHF U-18 teammate, and linemate, Sam Bennett (9th in the OHL). He had 18 goals and 22 assists in 60 regular season games for Kingston. Henri Ikonen, the third member of the "Rookie Line" last year, led the team in scoring with 22 goals and 29 assists.

Ryan Kujawinski was drafted in the 3rd Round by the Devils this year and will look to continue to use his big frame up the middle to muscle opponents off the puck. Ryan led the team with 31 assists last season and is hoping to regain the "chemistry" he developed with Billy Jenkins, after the two were acquired just prior to the trade deadline in January of 2012.  Jenkins sniped 20 goals in 53 games last season. Darcy Greenaway has the potential to put up big offensive numbers for Kingston, as well, and will be counted on to provide leadership on and off the ice for the Fronts. This will be Darcy's third OHL season, and his OA year. He needs just two points to reach the 100 point milestone. He has 53 goals in 135 OHL games.

Heading the list of newcomers for the Fronts is Lawson Crouse, who was Kingston's first selection in this year's Priority Selection (5th overall) and joins the Watson twins as Fronts from the London, Ontario area. Crouse was a winger on a line with first overall pick Travis Konecny (67s) last season in Minor Midget. Chris Pawley was recently picked up from the London Knights. The 18 year old will have to compete for minutes with everyone else, but should see more minutes than he had in the past while with the Knights. Conor McGlynn was drafted by the Fronts in the 6th Round in 2011.  He slipped to the 6th round because he was clearly interested in going the US College route.  He had a verbal commitment to play at Boston College this year, but opted to join the rising Fronts, and may slip nicely into the 3rd line alongside OA Greenaway, and rookie, Crouse. GM, Gilmour really likes McGlynn's size, an area they addressed with the signing of Crouse, as well.

Battling for roster spots for the Fronts, up front, will be returning players, Sam Schutt, Jean Dupuy, Marc Beckstead, Sam Povorozniouk and Slater Doggett

Kingston started 2012-13 season very strong, but slumped down the stretch to barely squeak into the playoffs. On the bright side, they were 14 points better than they had been the season before, thanks, in large part, to an excellent draft of 96 born players, and two solid Finnish imports. If Matt Mahalak has a very good year, and Kingston chooses an OHL ready backup, they should be in position to contend in the OHL's Eastern Conference.  Clearly, just making the playoffs will not "cut it" in Kingston this year. The Frontenacs have the talent to compete with anyone in the East, in my opinion, and will be an exciting team to watch. For the first time in a long, long time, Kingston will have 3 players who could be drafted very early in the NHL draft, perhaps 2 in the first round. NHL scouts will make Kingston a regular stop this season.