California talents drafted by NA3HL, NAHL, USHL, USPHL NCDC, WHL teams
The months of April and May signal the end of junior hockey seasons, but the beginning of the next as several leagues hold their annual drafts in those months and into June.
In the North American 3 Hockey League Draft on April 18, Tahoe Prep Hockey Academy forward Keith Kaczmarek went in the first round (ninth overall) to the Maine Wild.
Later, Vegas Jr. Golden Knights’ 18U AA defenseman Sammy Redoble was taken by the Butte Cobras in the fifth round (149th overall), Santa Margarita Catholic High School defenseman Hunter Voyles was chosen by the Peoria Mustangs in the sixth round (198th overall), Tahoe Academy forward Brett MacNicoll (El Segundo native, Los Angeles Jr. Kings alum) went in the sixth round (215th overall) to the Elmira Jr. Soaring Eagles, San Jose Jr. Sharks’ 18U AAA forward Aleksander Erk was selected in the seventh round (230th overall) by the Gillette Wild and rounding out the California connections was Anaheim Jr. Ducks’ 18U AA forward Brendan Carley, who went to Gillette in the eighth round (269th overall).
Two players who skated on the Jr. Kings’ 14U AAA team this past season – forward Zane Rowan (Torrance, Regina Pats, third round, 61st overall) and defenseman Pavel Bocharov (Escondido, Saskatoon Blades, eighth round, 160th overall) – were selected in this year’s Western Hockey League (WHL) Bantam Draft, which was conducted on May 2.
Three current players from the Jr. Sharks’ 14U AAA team also became WHL property, as defenseman Garrett Brown (San Jose, Spokane Chiefs, fourth round, 85th overall), forward Tyler Dysart (Sunnyvale, Prince Albert Raiders, fourth round, 88th overall), and forward Matthew Ng (Cupertino, Everett Silvertips, fifth round, 100th overall) also were drafted.
Other California players who were chosen in the WHL Bantam Draft included Newport Beach native and defenseman Josh Niedermayer (Jr. Ducks, Vancouver Giants, second round, 30th overall), Calabasas native and goaltender Dylan Silverstein (Jr. Ducks, Medicine Hat Tigers, fifth round, 95th overall), Irvine native and forward James Hong (Jr. Ducks, Everett, fifth round, 108th overall), Fullerton native and defenseman Will Sinclair (Medicine Hat, eighth round, 166th overall), San Jose native and forward Jacob Lize Rochon (Jr. Sharks, Seattle Thunderbirds, eighth round, 176th overall), Huntington Beach native and defenseman Brodrick Williams (Jr. Ducks, Seattle, ninth round, 183rd overall) and forward Cadon Kwiatkowski (Jr. Ducks, Calgary Hitmen, 11th round, 233rd overall).
The two-part United States Hockey League Draft (Phase I on May 6, Phase II on May 7) saw more California names selected.
In Phase I (2003 birth years), three Jr. Kings’ 16U AAA players were taken as forwards Danny Minnehan (Cypress native, Muskegon Lumberjacks, second round, 29th overall), Parker Murray (Los Angeles, Chicago Steel, seventh round, 102nd overall) and Ean Somoza (Simi Valley, Sioux Falls Stampede, eighth round, 108th overall) were drafted. Laguna Niguel native and former Jr. Kings defenseman Shai Buium went in the sixth round (82nd overall) to the Sioux City Musketeers.
The next day in Phase II, California picks included goaltender Mattias Sholl (Hermosa Beach, Jr. Kings, Madison Capitals, sixth round, 89th overall), defenseman Colton Huard (Foothill Ranch, Jr. Kings, Fargo Force, seventh round, 101st overall), forward Joseph Harguindeguy (La Habra, Jr. Ducks, Cedar Rapids RoughRiders, ninth round, 132nd overall), forward Nicholas Chmelevski (Huntington Beach, Youngstown Phantoms, 11th round, 164th overall), forward Jacob Brockman (El Segundo, Jr. Kings, Green Bay Gamblers, 12th round, 172nd overall), forward J.T. Halliday (Santa Clarita, California Golden Bears, Cedar Rapids, 13th round, 193rd overall), goalie Ian Shane (Manhattan Beach, Jr. Kings, Chicago, 13th round, 195th overall), forward Matthew Gross (Las Vegas, Tri-City Storm, 13th round, 199th overall), forward David Tolan (Ontario, Jr. Kings, Green Bay, 14th round, 202nd overall), forward Jordan Brisson (Manhattan Beach, Jr. Kings, Chicago, 14th round, 210th overall), defenseman Jack Blake (Manhattan Beach, Jr. Kings, Cedar Rapids, 17th round, 253rd overall), forward Andre Gasseau (Garden Grove, Jr. Kings, Fargo, 18th round, 266th overall), forward Huston Karpman (Manhattan Beach, Jr. Kings, Sioux City, 19th round, 280th overall) and forward Noah Leibl (Del Mar, San Diego Jr. Gulls, Muskegon, 19th round, 288th overall).
The United States Premier Hockey League’s NCDC Draft was held May 15, with forward Alex Krause (Calabasas, Jr. Kings, Jersey Hitmen), forward Tyler McNeil (Valencia, Jr. Ducks, Valencia Jr. Flyers, Tahoe Prep, New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs), defenseman Caleb Cordas (Newport Beach, Jr. Ducks, New Jersey Rockets), goalie Ethan Racz (Carlsbad, Jr. Gulls, New Jersey), forward Alec Grace (Laguna Hills, Northern Cyclones) and forward Ben Biester (Danville, Jr. Ducks, Golden State Elite, Tri-Valley Blue Devils, Utica Jr. Comets) all getting selected.
Rounding out the junior drafts, the June 4 North American Hockey League saw goaltender Patrick Pugliese (Pasadena, Jr. Ducks, New Jersey Titans, first round, 14th overall), defenseman Matthew Berezowski (Fullerton, Ontario Jr. Reign, second round, 36th overall, Chippewa Steel), forward Drew Vieten (Calabasas, Jr. Kings, fourth round, 93rd overall, Minnesota Wilderness, pictured), forward Tyler Shetland (Laguna Hills, Jr. Ducks, fifth round, 111th overall, Kenai River Brown Bears), forward Cody Sherman (San Diego, Jr. Ducks, fifth round, 125th overall, Minot Minotauros), Biester (sixth round, 135th overall, Minnesota), forward Cooper Haar (Huntington Beach, Jr. Ducks, Jr. Kings, sixth round, 148th overall, Lone Star Brahmas), Tyler Leibl (Del Mar, Jr. Gulls, eighth round, 206th overall, Aberdeen Wings), defenseman Gunner Moore (Las Vegas, St. John Bosco, ninth round, 214th overall, Odessa Jackalopes), forward Tyler Blanchard (San Jose, Jr. Sharks, ninth round, 232nd overall, Aberdeen), Karpman (Manhattan Beach, Jr. Kings, 10th round, 246th overall, Corpus Christi Ice Rays), forward Jack Cooper (Santa Cruz, Jr. Sharks, 11th round, 276th overall, Lone Star), goalie Hunter Garvey (San Diego, Jr. Gulls, 13th round, 324th overall, Corpus Christi) and forward Victor Ouellet-Massicotte (Jr. Ducks, Golden State Elite, Cupertino Cougars, 13th round, 330th overall, Springfield Jr. Blues) get drafted.
Former teams mentioned courtesy www.eliteprospects.com.
— Matt Mackinder
(June 11, 2019)