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Buccaneers Breeze to Anderson Cup

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Three wins by Des Moines over the weekend clinch regular season title
The Des Moines Buccaneers took their first step to a National Championship over the weekend by clinching the Anderson Cup for winning the regular season title. The wins also assured them a place in the upcoming Gold Cup playoffs for the National Junior Hockey Championship.

The weekend started at home for Des Moines with a 6-1 win against the North Iowa Huskies. The Buccaneers Peter Sejna figured in on 5 of the 6 Des Moines goals with one assist and 4 goals, one of which came on the power play. The Buccaneers then traveled the 103 miles North to Waterloo and finished clinching the cup with an easy 7-3 win against the Waterloo Black Hawks. Kelly Miller got the game-winning goal while Jerrid Reinholz, Pete Fregoe, and KC Caudill each added 2 goals apiece. Des Moines then added another 5-4 win against North Iowa, this time coming in Mason City.
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Montreal Canadiens Top junior Prospects Update

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POS HT WT AGE DRAFTED
Jose Theodore G 5-10 180 20 D-Mtl94 (2/44)

GP W L T Avg Sv%
98-99 Stats 21 10 9 2 2.49 .927 (AHL)
98-99 Stats 13 3 10 0 3.35 .887 (NHL)

#1 Strength- Winner’s attitude.
#1 Weakness- Inconsistency.
With the trade of Thibeault and the arrival of Hackett, Theodore was surprised and angered by his demotion to Fredericton. The main reason for his demotion was his inconsistent play. He has recently come to accept his demotion and was recently named the AHL’s player of the week. Barring injury, Theodore is guaranteed a large workload down the stretch and into the playoffs.

Theodore finished the week 1-0-1, with a GAA of 3.00. He stopped 36 shots in a 4-4 tie with Portland, and stopped 30 shots in an 8-2 thrashing of St.John’s. (Week ending 3/13/99)

Projection at NHL level- Star.
Current Stock Status- On the rise.

POS HT WT AGE DRAFTED
Mathieu Garon G 6-1 175 21 D-Mtl96(2/44)

GP W L T AVG Sav%
98-99 Stats 34 10 21 1 3.21 .897 (AHL)

#1 Strength- Lateral Movement.
#1 Weakness- Goes down too early. Read more »

AJHL Quarter Finals (March 14th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
Fort Saskatchewan 4 at Lloydminster 3
The Fort Saskatchewan Traders regained home ice advantage Sunday night with a 4-3 victory over the Lloydminster Blazers in Lloydminster.
John Findlay opened the scoring for the Traders 3:14 in on an unassisted, even strength goal. Kyle Werner tied it up for the home side only minutes later, however, as he scored his first of the playoffs. In the second, AJHL MVP Matt Gorman gave the Traders their second lead of the game on the powerplay assisted by John Findlay. Dan Gilbertson then made it 3-1 for the Fort with 2:15 to go in the period.

In the third, Mark Hallam brought the Blazers to within one with his second of the post season only 1:19 in, but the Traders regained their two goal advantage as Brent Popadych netted his first of the playoffs. A couple minutes later Paul Esdale made it close once again for Lloyd, but it was as close as they were going to get on this night.

Fort Saskatchewan goaltender Nick Boucher was phenomenal once again. He stopped 13 of 14 shots in the first, all 17 he faced in the second and 17 of 19 in the third. His counterpart Ray Fraser wasn’t as busy, facing seven, six and 10 shots in the three periods respectively.

Calgary 5 at Camrose 1 (Canucks win 4-0)
The Calgary Canucks became the second team to advance into the AJHL semi-finals and will play the winner of the Calgary Royals-Olds Grizzlys series. Read more »

AJHL Quarter Finals (March 13th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
Olds 4 at Calgary Royals 3
The Olds Grizzlys, heavy underdogs heading into the series, moved one step closer to the biggest upset of the AJHL playoffs in the past several years.
Unlike the previous four games, the bulk of the scoring in this one took place in the early going. Midway through the opening period, Craig Bezjack scored for the Grizzlys to make it 1-0. The assists went to Tyler Brosz and Mike Gerstenbuhler, who is eligible for this year’s draft and recorded his first point of the post-season. Just over a minute after the Olds goal, Ben Knopp tied the game up on the powerplay for the Royals and three minutes after that Krys Kolanos scored an even-strength tally. Both goals were assisted by David Evans, who increased his playoff point total to 8 points. Colen Pappas tied the game up before the period would end as he scored a shorthanded goal at the 15:27 mark.

In the second period, Greg Davis gave the Grizzlys the lead on the powerplay 8:22 in. However, Calgary didn’t take long to tie it up as Ben Knopp, who has been having a terrific playoff thus far, scored a goal assisted by Scooter Smith and Krys Kolanos to knot the game at three. Under a minute later, Tyler Brosz scored what would turn out to be the winner, assisted by Ryan Watson and Joel Macauley.
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Chocolate Factory: The Beginning

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Hershey Kisses line the light poles as you drive through Hershey. No matter where you turn, there always seems to be something to remind you of the tastiness of anything “Hershey” made. Be it the chocolate they produce or the park and museum they run, the company always seems to present quality products to the public. Their factory produces some of the best chocolate one can buy and probably one of the biggest selections one can find. Goes to show you that Hershey knows how to create a tasty “treat”, but when it comes to hockey the treats can taste even sweeter.

Located between Hershey Park and the Hershey Museum, Hersheypark Arena sits and has done so for many years. It is a relic to most, being that it is the oldest arena in the AHL not to mention, on most days, it houses two outstanding “treasures” inside of the arena, the Hershey Bears and the arena’s zamboni driver. Zamboni driver? Yes, Hersheypark currently employs the longest working zamboni driver in hockey and like him the Bears are a priceless treasure to enjoy.
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AJHL Quarter Finals (March 12th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
Grande Prairie 2 at St. Albert 4 (Saints win 4-1)
The St. Albert Saints put little doubt in the minds of Grande Prairie Storm players and fans that this would be their last game of the season early on in the first period as they exploded for three quick goals out of the gate.
The Saints were flying in front of their home crowd at Akinsdale Arena and struck for a quick goal 37 seconds in. Joey Bastien scored, assisted by Pavel Beranek and Ron Grimard on the powerplay. It would be the only powerplay opportunity the club would get that period so, to capitalize on a chance like that was a definite boost to both the home crowd and the team. The club carried that momentum and four minutes later made it 2-0 on Bastien’s second of the game, also from Beranek and Grimard. The Storm had yet to score more than two goals in a game against the Saints in this series and players on both teams knew it. Only three minutes after that, Beranek, Bastien and Grimard combined again to put the club up by three. This was enough to chase the Storm’s Chad Rycroft from the nets on this night. Despite his inspired play in the playoffs to this point, he was unable to stop the Saints on this night as they peppered 11 shots at him in under eight minutes.
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Leafs’ Prospect: Frantisek Mrazek: Will the Bubble Rise or Will the Bubble Burst

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The scouts sometimes say that an NHL power-forward is born AND made, and this is frequently true. A big, strong, physical forward who has excellent offensive skills is a desire of many NHL teams. The Maple Leafs drafted a young man, Frantisek (Frank) Mrazek in the fifth round, 111th selection overall from Ceske-Budjovice in the Czech. Republic. Frank is currently 19 yrs. old and finishing his second year with the Red Deer Rebels of the WHL at the juniors level. He is 6-4, 220 lbs. with excellent strength. He scored 30 goals, 24 assists for 54 pts. in 65 games for Red Deer as a rookie in 1997-98. Great production was expected of him in Red Deer this season, particularly after he raised some eyebrows with a good showing in the Leafs’ training camp.

“Our expectations for Frank were very high coming into this season”, stated Rebels assistant coach, Peter Anholt. When Frank got off to a sizzling start with 6 goals and 12 pts. in a 4 game stretch early in the season, he seemed to be on his way. He was named WHL player of the week and player of the month in October. Leafs director of player development, Anders Hedberg called him “a young man with goals. He knows where he comes from and where he is going.” in a Toronto Star article by Ken Campbell.
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AJHL Playoffs (March 10th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
St. Albert 1 at Grande Prairie 0 (OT)
For the second night in a row, St. Albert and Grande Prairie played to an extreme defensive battle. While last night it was Kirby Millar against Chad Rycroft, tonight Rycroft’s opponent was Scott Kabotoff.
Kabotoff, who tied a league-record four shutouts in the regular season stopped seven shots in the first period, 15 in the second and ten in the third. He stopped one shot over seven minutes of overtime. Kabotoff’s goals-against average playing in three of the team’s four playoff games so far is Rycroft, who was not even the clear-cut number one goaltender in the regular season for the Storm, has played every single minute of the playoffs so far for his club. He did allow the game-winning goal tonight, but not before stopping 11 shots in the first period, six in the second and eight in the third as well as two in overtime. His average dropped to 2.47 and his save percentage rose to .922 on this night.

While the first three periods were scoreless, Mark Jackson scored his first of the playoffs with 3:53 remaining in the first overtime period. Pavel Beranek added the assist.

Fort Saskatchewan 1 at Lloydminster 4 Read more »

First Playoff Matchup Set

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Lincoln clinches fifth to set up western division showdown
The Lincoln Stars clinched fifth place in the USHL over the weekend to set up a first round matchup between the Stars and the 4th place Sioux City Musketeers in the first round of the USHL playoffs. Lincoln clinched a playoff spot on Wednesday with a 6-5 shoot-out win in Sioux City. The Stars then went on to win 3 more games over the weekend including wins over Dubuque 8-3, North Iowa 4-3 (SO), and a 5-3 win over Green Bay at home. Lincoln got contributions from literally every direction as they tallied 21 goals from a total of 11 different players in their 4 games on the week, let by Eric Maksimenko’s 4 goals.

The bottom teams in the USHL continue to scramble for the last 3 remaining births in the playoffs. Thunder Bay, who has only 2 games remaining, was only able to gain a single point over the weekend in a 2 game series with the USA (18& Under) Team. They lost on Friday 4-1, and took the USA team to a shoot-out before losing on Saturday by a 3-2 (SO) score. The Flyers, by gaining the one point for a shoot-out loss, still hold on to 6th place in the league currently with 43 points.
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AJHL Playoffs (March 9th)

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[ Exclusive 2000 Draft Eligible Player Profiles and brief Scouting Reports. Click Here!!! ]
St. Albert 1 at Grande Prairie 2
In a defensive struggle, the Saints dropped their first game of the series to the Grande Prairie Storm as all the scoring in the game fell within a three minute period.
With 5:26 left in the second, Shane Mudryk put the puck behind surprise starter Kirby Millar of the Saints, assisted by Rob Kimble and Clint Lehune. 23 seconds later, the Storm made it a 2-0 lead as Mark Grumetza took a pass from Lonnie DeHaan. On the powerplay, several minutes later former Edmonton Ice Joey Bastien scored, assisted by Pavel Beranek and Jeebo Manah and the Saints pulled to within a goal.

In the third period, the Saints threw everything they could at Grande Prairie netminder Chad Rycroft, but Rycroft turned aside all 15 shots and the Storm guaranteed they’d be playing back at Akinsdale Arena in St. Albert for at least one more game.

Olds 3 at Calgary Royals 7
This game was about as close to must-win as the Royals could get this early in the playoffs and they definitely rose to the occasion. Billed as possibly the only team in the South who could upset cross-town rivals Calgary Canucks, it looked for awhile like they would not get that chance. However, after tonight’s win they are without a doubt back in it.
Jamie Iwamoto was a surprise start in goal for Calgary as starter Peter Dobrowolski, who played almost 75% of the team’s games this season, allowed 15 goals in the first two games.
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