Games of Jan. 10-16, 2023
(Summaries by Joshua Boyd/USPHL)
Forward: Mathias Rakell, New York Aviators
Rakell (‘02/Stockholm, Sweden) stands today as a close No. 2 in the USPHL Premier scoring race with 84 points, just one point behind the Minnesota Squatch’s Daniel Ellingson at 85. Rakell is on a torrid goal-scoring tier. Coming off a five-goal showing against the Jersey Hitmen on Jan. 14, he added three more in his next two days. He also assisted on six other goals for an 8-6-14 line in just three games. He is getting close to a 2.00 points per game average for his career, standing with 140 points in 74 career Premier games.
Defense: Wyatt Swonger, Elmira Jr. Enforcers
Swonger (‘04/Pekin, Ind.) put up two goals over the Enforcers’ last three games, all victories – two against the P.A.L. Jr. Islanders and one against Utica. He also put up a +2 rating along with two blocked shots. Over this last two years with Elmira, Swonger has 41 points in 75 career games.
Goaltender: John Lloyd, Utica Jr. Comets
Lloyd (‘04/Toronto, Ont.) only just recently joined the Comets in December. His third start was certainly a show-stopper, as he stopped 62 of 63 shots he faced by the Rockets Hockey Club on Jan. 14, giving the Jr. Comets an important win as it helped them clinch a Mid-Atlantic playoff spot in March.
New England Division
(Summaries by Britt Hart)
Forward: Justin Tremblay, Northern Cyclones
Tremblay (’03 / Bécancour, Que.) and the Cyclones remain in first place in the New England Division after clinching a playoff berth with 49 overall points in the standings. In addition to being first place in their division, the Cyclones remains first in entire USPHL Premier in winning percentage at .914. Over the course of the Cyclones last 2 matchups, the Quebec native scored two goals during their 5-2 victory against the Pics and also tallied an assist during their 3-1 victory against the Jr Bruins. With these three points, Tremblay is now second in scoring on the Cyclones with 28 total points.
Defense: David Lacrose, South Shore Kings
Lacrose (’03 / Woodbridge, Ont.) and the Kings split their last set of games with a 6-4 loss to the Pics and a 5-2 victory over the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs. Despite the loss to the Pics, Lacrose found himself on the scoresheet twice assisting on two goals in addition to blocking three shots and leading the teams with shots on goal with eight. As the playoff push continues, the Kings are not only looking to clinch a playoff birth but also move up in the standings to secure a higher seed within the division.
Goaltender: Ben Zaranek, Springfield Pics
Zaranek (’03 / Springfield, Mass.) stood tall between the pipes for the Pics during their 6-4 victory over the Kings. During the contest, the net minder stopped 52 of the 56 shots he faced and is now on a 3-0-0-1 streak dating back to Dec. 10. The Pics sit just below the Junior Bruins in the standings with 35 total points and similar to the Kings, they are looking to rise in the standings and secure a spot in the postseason.