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USHL Junior Hockey News

The turkey has begun to burn off and the holiday season is in full swing. In addition to the holiday season, the USHL season is still going strong. To start off with some junior hockey news, the inaugural Frosty Cup has been announced and scheduled for January 2020. The event includes one indoor and one outdoor USHL game between the Chicago Steel and Green Bay Gamblers.

To take place in Dallas, Texas, the event comes in conjunction with the NHL’s Winter Classic between the Dallas Stars and Nashville Predators. To order tickets, the Stars are offering participating youth teams the first opportunity to the 2020 Bridgestone Winter Classic, January 1-3.

Coaching Change

The Chicago Steel’s Greg Moore has been named the new head coach of the Toronto Marlies, the AHL affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Steel’s assistant coach, Broch Sheahan, will take over head coaching duties for the team for the remainder of the season. Moore has had a phenomenal junior hockey tenure and will look to bring the same mentality and work ethic to the AHL and maybe one day, the NHL.

USHL Players of the Week

It seems like there’s been a rotation of the players of the week, but this week there are some unfamiliar faces. Forward Christian Sarlo of the Lincoln Stars, defenseman Evan Nause of the Sioux Falls Stampede, and goaltender Logan Stein of the Waterloo Black Hawks were all named for their respective positions. Sarlo played three games last week, scored three goals, three assists, and had a +4. Nause also played three games but only scored one goal, two assists, and had a +4. The Ferris State commit, Logan Stein, continued to improve his draft stock last week in his two games. Stein had two shutouts and made a combined 58 saves in the two contests.

USHL Standings

As it stands, things are tightening up at the top of the Western Conference. The Black Hawks hold an eight-point lead over the Stars who have 25 points. The Fargo Force, Omaha Lancers, Des Moines Buccaneers, and Tri-City Storm are all tied with 23 points. Bringing up the rear are the Sioux City Musketeers with 19 points and the Stampede with 17 points.

On the East Side, the Steel cling to a one-point lead over Team USA’s National Development team who has 34 points. The Dubuque Fighting Saints are next in line with 33 points and then there’s a relatively large gap between the rest of the teams. Tied at 26 points are the Youngstown Phantoms and Green Bay Gamblers, followed by the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders with 21 points. The Muskegon Lumberjacks remain competitive with 20 points and bringing up the bottom of the league are the Madison Capitols with seven points.

Statistical Leaders

Points Leaders:
Sean Farrell, Steel, 30 points
Matty De St. Phalle, Steel, 28 points
Jesse Tucker, Gamblers, 25 points

Goals Leaders:
Matty De St. Phalle, Steel, 15
Jesse Tucker, Gamblers, 14
Trevor Kuntar, Phantoms, 13

Assists Leaders:
Sean Farrell, Steel, 21
Ty Jackson, Saints, 17
Owen Power, Steel, 17

Goalie Wins Leaders:
Erik Portillo, Saints, 12
Victor Ostman, Steel, 12
Cole Brady, Force, 10

Save Percentage:
Logan Stein, Black Hawks, .938%
Nicholas Grabko, Gamblers, .933%
Erik Portillo, Saints, .912%

Goals Against Average:
Logan Stein, Black Hawks, 1.58
Erik Portillo, Saints, 2.05
Nicholas Grabko, Gamblers, 2.08

The USHL is the country’s top junior hockey league for players under 20 years old and generates many of the NHL’s stars. Many of the players listed in this article will make an NHL roster in the near future and they may even become household names.

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @Nwinansw for more junior hockey news!

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