Photo: Forward Jordan Samuels-Thomas played two seasons at Bowling Green before transferring to Quinnipiac, which will match up against St. Cloud State in the second semi-final game at the Frozen Four (courtesy of Rick Osentoski/Icon SMI)
For Quinnipiac forward Jordan Samuels-Thomas (WPG), two years can make a world of difference.
"I remember this time two years ago sitting in my dorm room at [Bowling Green]," said Samuels-Thomas, just a day before his team would play St. Cloud State University in the semi-final match of the Frozen Four.
Photo: UMass Lowell goaltender and Winnipeg Jets prospect Connor Hellebuyck has been a driving force in the River Hawks second half surge to the 2013 Frozen Four (courtesy of Fred Kfoury/Icon SMI)
UMass Lowell freshman goaltender Connor Hellebuyck (WPG) has been a big reason behind the River Hawks’ successful run into the Frozen Four. He currently leads the nation in several categories, including goals-against average (1.31) and save percentage (.953). His six shutouts are also tied for the most nationally.
Photo: UMass Lowell freshman goaltender and Winnipeg Jets prospect Connor Hellebuyck has been impressive in his first season of Division 1 hockey (courtesy of UMass Lowell Athletics)
Not many goalies have a lot of success during their freshman season in Hockey East, but UMass Lowell’s Connor Hellebuyck has dominated college hockey so far this season.
Photo: Northeastern University forward and Winnipeg Jets prospect Vinny Saponari is currently ranked second in scoring for the Huskies, behind only Anaheim Ducks prospect Kevin Roy (courtesy of Jim Pierce)
Having a senior class that can guide a mostly younger team is crucial in not only the success of the program but also in the development of their younger players. But, over the last several years, few NCAA teams have been hit harder by non-graduating player departures than Northeastern University.
Photo: Drafted 3rd overall in 2008, Zach Bogosian has gradually developed into a solid top four defenseman in the NHL. (courtesy of Andy Mead/YCJ/Icon SMI)
Because the 2008 draft class produced so many big name stars, the other prospects that have yet to make the big show yet are often held to unrealistic standards, and written off as busts too soon. Zach Bogosian's future with the Jets/Thrashers franchise was in doubt at one point, and only in the 2011-12 season did he really show what the front office saw in him to take him third overall.