Saturday, June 24, 2017

Keith Petruzzelli selected 88th overall by the Detroit Red Wings

Keith Petruzzelli (photo by Muskegon Lumberjacks)
Keith Petruzzelli has been selected 88th overall by the Detroit Red Wings. The 6-foot-6, 180 pound Petruzzelli, a native of Wilbraham, Massachusetts is the highest incoming draft pick in the history of the Quinnipiac Bobcats program. Former standout defenseman Devon Toews was previously the highest selected Bobcat when he was selected in the 4th round by the New York Islanders in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Transfer John Doherty was a second round pick by Toronto but went to New Hampshire for two years before coming to Quinnipiac. Petruzzelli recently concluded his first and only season with the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL where he led all rookie goaltenders with 22 wins and had a .918 save percentage.

He led the Lumberjacks to the Clark Cup playoffs where he had 52 saves in two starts against Dubuque. In January, he was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2017 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game after making 21 saves in relief in 27 minutes. In February, Petruzzelli became the only USHL goaltender to score a goal this season when he scored an empty net goal in a 4-1 win over the Madison Capitols. 

Prior to playing with Muskegon, he was a standout at the South Kent School in Connecticut going 21-1 with a 1.13 goals against average and a .936 save percentage with nine shutouts in 22 games played.

Petruzzelli will compete with rising sophomore Andrew Shortridge and senior Chris Truehl for starts in goal. He will be joined in Hamden with his brother D.J. who has battled some injuries the past couple of seasons in junior hockey. Petruzzelli is set to enroll for summer classes in July and take part in the summer workout program in preparation for the upcoming season.

Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Keith Petruzzelli named USA Hockey Goalie of the Year

Keith Petruzzelli holding up his first USHL goal
Incoming Quinnipiac Bobcats freshman goaltender Keith Petruzzelli has been named the Dave Peterson USA Hockey Goalie of the Year as announced in a press release by the governing hockey body in the United States. Petruzzelli, a native of Wilbraham, Massachusetts recently concluded his first and only season with the Muskegon Lumberjacks where he led all rookie goaltenders with 22 wins and had a .918 save percentage.

He led the Lumberjacks to the Clark Cup playoffs where he had 52 saves in two starts against Dubuque. In January, he was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2017 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game after making 21 saves in relief in 27 minutes. In February, Petruzzelli became the only USHL goaltender to score a goal this season when he scored an empty net goal in a 4-1 win over the Madison Capitols. 

Petruzzelli is expected to be a drafted within the first few rounds of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft this June. When he enrolls in Hamden this fall, he will have his brother D.J. on the team as well continuing Quinnipiac's tradition of having brothers in the program.



Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.


Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Five Quinnipiac commits selected in USHL Phase II Draft


Day two of the USHL Draft saw five more future Bobcats selected in the Phase II portion of the draft for players born 1997 to 2001. Over the two day total, Quinnipiac men's ice hockey team saw eight players in total drafted by USHL clubs with three coming last night and the rest selected today.

The first future Bobcat selected was 1998 defenseman Zach Metsa, a Wisconsin native by the Youngstown Phantoms in the 4th round with the 57th pick. Metsa played the the 2016-2017 with the Merritt Centennials (BCHL). In 57 regular season games, Metsa had 27 points (3 goals, 24 assists). He tallied 5 more assists in 11 playoff games for the Centennials. Metsa can either return to Merritt for his final junior season or try to make Youngstown and play at a bit higher level in the USHL.

Corey Clifton was selected by the Muskegon Lumberjacks in the 5th round, 78th overall. He spent this past season with the North Jersey Avalanche 18U team where he had 35 points (14 goals, 21 assists) in 38 games played. His team made it all the way to USA Nationals but lost in round robin play. He also captained Christian Brothers Academy where he had 23 points (13 goals, 10 assists) on the season. It is unknown if Clifton will look to make Muskegon during training camp or sign with another league to avoid having to earn a roster spot in training camp.

In round nine saw the drafting of Salisbury defenseman Peter Dilberatore by the Bloomington Thunder. He had been a Sioux Falls draft pick in Phase I a season ago but was not protected by them. Dilberatore, a Nova Scotia native had 18 points (6 goals, 12 assists) in 30 games played for Salisbury. A left shot defenseman, he is expected to play another season at the Connecticut prep school.

John Campomenosi was drafted by the Madison Capitols in the 13th round, 200th overall. The Wayne, New Jersey native played only played 9 games this season for the New Jersey Hitmen 16U team due to an upper body injury that sidelined him. He finished the season with 8 points (2 goals, 6 assists).  Campomenosi also saw 8 games for his high school program Don Bosco Prep in which he logged one assist. He is expected to play another season with Don Bosco and the Jersey Hitmen program.

The final future Bobcat selected was 2001 forward PJ Fletcher in the 19th round, 292nd overall by the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. The Frisco, Texas native plays for the Selects Academy 15 under team at the South Kent School where he is a teammate with current commit Ethan Phillips. In 55 games played for Selects, Fletcher had 54 points (20 goals, 34 assists). He is expected to play another season at South Kent.

Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Three Quinnipiac commits selected in USHL Phase I draft


The USHL Phase I Draft took place last night for the top 2001 born prospects in North America. Quinnipiac has five 2001 born commits but only four can be drafted as defenseman Dom Fensore has already accepted an invitation to play for the USNTDP Under 17 team. That left Nick Kent, Ethan Phillips, Connor Tait and PJ Fletcher eligible to be drafted.

Kent was the first future Bobcat selected as he went in the second round with the 24th pick by the Green Bay Gamblers. The Delta Hockey Academy product was invited to the USNTDP evaluation camp but didn't make the final roster. In 30 games for the Delta Elite 15 team, Kent had 24 points (3 goals, 24 assists) but he elevated his game in the playoffs with 6 points (2 goals, 4 assists) in 3 games. The Ladera Ranch, California native will look to earn a spot on the Green Bay roster once he attends the teams training camp.

In the third round with the 39th pick in the draft, Nova Scotia born forward Ethan Phillips was selected by the Sioux Falls Stampede. Phillips is in his first season playing for the Selects Under 15 team at the South Kent School in Connecticut. His team made USA nationals in Arizona losing once again to Yale Bulldogs midget program. In 52 games played on the season, Phillips had 67 points (34 goals, 33 assists). He is expected to play another season with South Kent before potentially heading to the USHL. Two of his fellow South Kent teammates were also selected by Sioux Falls in defenseman Simon Mack (Penn State) and forward William Margel. 

The final future Quinnipiac Bobcat, Connor Tait, was selected in the sixth round with the 85th overall pick by the Madison Capitols. The Boyds, Maryland native is a product of Team Maryland 16U where he scored 44 goals in 34 games which included the playoffs. He was the Washington Post player of the year after scoring 39 goals for Gonzaga College High School in Washington, D.C. Tait is a right shot power forward that has big time goal scoring ability.

The only 2001 not selected was forward PJ Fletcher out of the South Kent School who should hear his name called today in the Phase II portion of the draft.

Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

Early preseason poll has Quinnipiac at number 10

BobcatsHockeyBlog.com stock photo
An early look at the 2017-2018 college hockey season by College Hockey News saw the Quinnipiac Bobcats men's ice hockey come in as the number 10 team in their Super Early Top 10 for next season. Senior College Hockey News writer Joe Meloni had this to say about the team in an excerpt from the Quinnipiac portion of the poll.

'It's a good sign for a program when it misses the NCAA tournament and everyone wonders what exactly went wrong. The Bobcats won 23 games last season but picked up just two wins against NCAA tournament teams in seven tries. If a few of those results flip, the Bobcats likely see their run of NCAA tournament appearances grow to five straight.

The Bobcats bring back 89 goals from last year's team, losing only Tim Clifton from their top scorers. The departures of Connor Clifton, Derek Smith and others from a successful senior class won't be easy to replace. However, QU has a become a program that reloads, rather than rebuilding."

On paper Quinnipiac should be one of the upper echelon teams in the ECAC again with 17 players returning, with many of them having played large roles last year or in past seasons. The Bobcats will bring in 11 new faces which includes two transfer blue-liners that practiced this year with the team. The recruiting class is highlighted by standout goaltender Keith Petruzzelli who should be the highest Quinnipiac draft pick in this June's NHL Draft. Joining Petruzzelli, will be AJHL scoring champion Matt Forchuk, speedy play-making forward Odeen Tufto, Hamden native defenseman Joe O'Connor along with transfers Brandon Fortunato (BU), John Furgele (UNH) and five other freshman who will bring quality depth and talent to the program.

Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Chase Priskie named captain for 2017-18 season

Chase Priskie (photo by Matt Dewkett, SBNation)
Rising Quinnipiac Bobcats sophomore defenseman Chase Priskie was named the 45th captain of the program by his teammates and coaches for his junior season as announced by head coach Rand Pecknold at the teams annual postseason hockey banquet where other award winners were also announced. Along with Priskie, senior defenseman Kevin McKernan was named the teams assistant captain for next season.

Both players were in the QHockeyBlog poll for who should be the program's next captain. Chase Priskie won with 43% of the vote while McKernan tallied 9% of the vote. Both are deserving of leading the program in the 2017-2018 campaign as the team will have a lot of new faces on the ice. Priskie, a draft pick of the Washington Capitals will be the first junior captain in seven years since Scott Zurevinksi in the 2010-2011 season and only the eighth junior all-time to serve as the captain of the program.

Other award winners in the evening were Tim Clifton as the teams Most Valuable Player while Alex Whelan was named the Rookie of the Year. Both Tommy Schutt and Connor Clifton won the Coaches Award and Craig Martin was named the winner of the 7th Player Award. Derek Smith won the teams Academic Award following his win as the ECAC Hockey Academic Award winner.

Congratulations to the next captain Chase Priskie and the assistant captain Kevin McKernan along with this year's banquet award winners.

Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Corey Clifton signs National Letter of Intent

Corey Clifton signing his national letter of intent to play at Quinnipiac
Corey Clifton, the younger brother of graduating seniors Connor and Tim Clifton has officially signed his national letter of intent to play hockey for the Quinnipiac University Bobcats. The 1999 forward had verbally committed to Quinnipiac on April 22, 2016.

Clifton split his season playing for the North Jersey Avalanche 18 under team that made it all the way to USA nationals. In 48 games split between Tier I and the AYHL, Clifton had 35 points (14 goals, 21 assists). He added 3 points (2 goals, 1 assist) in 6 combined playoff games between both leagues. In 3 combined games at USA nationals, Clifton had a goal and 2 assists but North Jersey did not advance out of pool play. He was a teammate of fellow Quinnipiac commit in goaltender Justin Robbins. As a senior at Christian Brothers Academy High School in New Jersey, Clifton had 23 points (13 goals, 10 assists) in games played as he helped lead the team to the state semifinals.

Clifton is expected to play at least one senior, possibly two of junior hockey before enrolling at Quinnipiac. It is not known at this point where he will play for junior hockey next season. Congratulations to Corey and his family on his signing with Quinnipiac.

Jonathan Singer is a 2004 Quinnipiac alum. You can follow him on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.