Winnipeg Jets NCAA Prospect Tracker: Goalies of the Future?

Martin Rose

Freshman Jason Kasdorf is RPI's new starter and Connor Hellebuyck earns his first career shutout as Winnipeg Jets' "goalie-of-the-future" hopefuls impress.

As the NHL lockout continues, Arctic Ice Hockey will continue to focus on how the Winnipeg Jets' prospects are performing this season. In this feature, we will track the performance of the Winnipeg Jets' prospects throughout the past few weeks of the 2012-2013 NCAA hockey season. Enjoy!

Goaltenders

Connor Hellebuyck (UMass-Lowell) - Last time we checked in on Hellebuyck, he had just stopped 22 of 23 shots in a 3-1 win against Princeton. Since then, Hellebuyck has seen action in two more games. First, he came in to relieve starter Doug Carr against #1 New Hampshire, stopping 8 of 9 shots in the process. A week later, he made 25 saves in a 2-0 shutout win over Northeastern University. While Hellebuyck has seen only limited game action this season (~220 minutes), he is sporting a strong .918 SV% and 2.17 GAA. If he can keep it up, Hellebuyck may push Carr for starts in Lowell next season.

Jamie Phillips (Michigan Tech) - Phillips has been full of surprises lately. First, he actually started a game for Michigan Tech, against Northern Michigan last week. Then, he actually played well, stopping 23 of 25 shots in a 2-1 loss. Meanwhile, fellow freshman Phoenix Copley has played in seven games, started six of them, and currently sports a 1-6-0 record with an .851 SV% and 4.72 GAA. With numbers like that, it shouldn't be long before Phillips moves ahead of Copley on the depth chart.

Jason Kasdorf (RPI) - Like Hellebuyck, last time we checked in on Kasdorf he had just gotten his first start of the season, stopping 30 of 31 shots en route to a 4-1 RPI win over Mercyhurst. That performance earned Kasdorf another start, and he hasn't looked back since. Kasdorf has since supplanted senior Bryce Merriam (and backup Scott Diebold) as the team's starting goalie, appearing in each of RPI's last four games. He's played well in all his starts too: he made 19 saves in a 2-2 tie against Princeton, stopped 21 of 23 shots in a losing effort against #13 Quinnipac, and in back-to-back action this past weekend he stopped 36 of 37 shots then 24 of 26 shots in a blowout 6-1 win over #15 Yale and a 2-2 tie against Browun University. In six games - five of them starts - Kasdorf has posted an impressive .945 SV% and 1.46 GAA.

The Winnipeg Jets' NCAA goaltenders, previously a ho-hum group, are suddenly something to get excited about.

Defensemen

Peter Stoykewych (Colorado College) - Remember last time we convened, when I warned that Colorado College needed to find their game fast, because their next four games were against two top 10 teams in North Dakota and Minnesota? Yeah? Well...that didn't really happen. Despite playing all four of those games at home, the Tigers came away with just one win in those four games. Stoykewych, for his part, played pretty well; he posted a +2 and played penalty-free hockey over the course of those four games, despite logging big minutes against the likes of Corban Knight, Danny Kristo, Rocco Grimaldi, Nick Bjugstad, and Erik Haula. And exciting things happen when Stoykewych is on the ice; of the 27 goals in Colorado College's past four games, Stoykewych was on the ice for 45% of them - 7 goals for and 5 goals against.

Aaron Harstad (Colorado College) - While he missed Colorado College's second game against Minnesota, a 4-4 tie, Harstad also did okay in Colorado College's recent steps. He had 4 shots and posted a -1 overall, but was on the ice for just one Tigers' goal for in their recent stretch. While that -1 isn't awful, especially against the likes of UND and Minnesota, we'd sure like to see some more pucks moving in the right direction when Harstad's out there. The coaches clearly trust Harstad though, as he was one of six skaters on the ice with a minute left and down a goal against Minnesota.

Brennan Serville (Michigan) - Serville's rough year continues. After missing a couple of games due to concussion troubles, Serville made it back into the lineup just in time to get creamed 5-0 by #17 Ferris State. Serville took two penalties (one of which led to a power-play goal) and was -1 in the loss. The Wolverines managed to get a point the next night though, with Serville, an already unassuming player, posting a true 0-for on the scoresheet: +/-: 0. Goals: 0. Assists: 0. Shots on goal: 0. Penalties: 0. You can always tell a Milford man.

Jacob Trouba (Michigan) - After exploding onto the NCAA hockey scene, Jacob Trouba has had a quiet couple of weeks, only registering one assist in his last four games. And while I'm not sure if he's truly "adjusted" or is simply playing more cautiously, he has also cut down on the penalties lately. While the goals haven't been there for Trouba lately, there's been no shortage of chances; Trouba has registered 14 shots on goal in the past 4 games.

For more on both Serville and Trouba, be sure to check out Anthony's updates from Ann Arbor.

Forwards

Vinny Saponari (Northeastern University) - Saponari, Northeastern's captain, added just one assist to his season totals in three games since our last update, bringing his season total up to 11 points in 15 games. And while the counting stats aren't quite what I had expected from Saponari, it's really not too bad considering the situation: Northeastern is 5-9-1 overall, 3-8-1 in conference play, and has scored more than three goals in a game just once all season, on October 10 against Merrimack. All things considered, second on the team in points and an even +/- rating (on a team with a -12 goal differential) is actually pretty good.

Yasin Cisse (Boston University) - Cisse picked up his second assist of the season, in BU's 4-2 victory over then-#1 ranked Boston College on Nov. 30. While Cisse's point production is hard to get excited about, with 21 shots on goal in 13 game, there were at least some signs of life before he bolted for the QMJHL, where he has potted two goals and an assist in his first two games for the Blainville-Boisbriant Armada.

Tanner Lane (Nebraska-Omaha) - Tanner Lane's been inserted back into the lineup after racking up DNP's in recent weeks, but has had little to show for it. Through 11 games he's been held pointless. Worse yet, he's posted a -3 on a team with a +20 goal differential. Ouch.

Jordan Samuels-Thomas (Quinnipac University) - After a brief hot streak, Jordan Samuels-Thomas has cooled off considerably, going scoreless in his past four games. Qunnipac keeps rolling though, winning all four of those games by a combined 13-2 margin, including a 4-0 away win against #12 ranked Union College. The #13 ranked Bobcats are now 12-3-2 on the year and undefeated in their last 10.

Note: Click the headings to sort the table by any category you choose.

Name School GP G A P PIM
Jacob Trouba U. of Michigan 14 4 6 10 44
Yasin Cisse Boston University 13 0 2 0 16
Peter Stoykewych Colorado College 18 0 2 2 8
Vinny Saponari Northeastern University 15 3 8 11 12
Jordan Samuels-Thomas Quinnipiac University 17 3 4 7 22
Tanner Lane U. of Nebraska-Omaha 11 0 0 0 2
Aaron Harstad Colorado College 16 1 3 4 6
Brennan Serville U. of Michigan 11 0 0 0 8

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