CORNWALL’S EASTERN CANADA ALL STAR CHALLENGE ROSTERS REVEALED

An exciting three day tournament is being held in the city of Cornwall, Ontario that is sure to showcase the best of Junior A hockey this side of the Manitoba border. The Eastern Canada All Star Challenge is set to take place November 16-18 at the Benson Centre.

Returning to it’s founding league of the CCHL, the Challenge is slated to have numerous NCAA and NHL scouts in attendance to watch the nine teams battle it out. The CCHL will supply two teams, Team Yzerman and Team Robinson with Cornwall Colts bench boss Ian MacInnis headmanning the latter. The Nothern Ontario Hockey League will send one along with the Quebec and Maritime Junior Hockey Leagues.

The Ontario Junior Hockey League based in and around Toronto will send four squads to Cornwall, a total of 80 players with 20 of those committed to Division 1 NCAA schools.

The round robin begins on Monday the 16th with the QJHL taking on OJHL Team Coffey at 6pm. For more info, head on over to www.centraljuniorhockeyleague.ca

The complete rosters are as follows:

CCHL TEAM YZERMAN

LAST NAME FIRST NAME MONTH-DAY-YR POS SHOT HT WT NCAA STATUS CURRENT TEAM
Coughlin Ryan April 19 1997 G L 6-1 188 Cumberland
Andriano Ian August 11 1996 G L 6-0 186 Ottawa
White Cameron March 12 1997 D L 6-2 187 Ottawa
Joseph Marcus May 8 1997 D L 5-8 181 Sacred Heart (17-18) Carleton Place
Lawson Geoffrey May 15 1997 D L 5-11 195 Robert Morris (17-18) Ottawa
Kovacevic Johnathan July 12 1997 D R 6-3 217 Merrimack (17-18) Ottawa
Rappleyea Sean February 3 1995 D R 5-10 177 Ottawa
List Cale August 8 1998 D L 6-2 193 Umass Lowel (17-18) Pembroke
Croteau Louis-Charles May 9 1996 F R 5-8 176 Kanata
Vella Paul March 2 1996 F L 5-9 178 Gloucester
Billings Jack October 4 1995 F R 5-9 182 Brockville
Mereiles Greg January 1 1999 F R 5-9 173 Ottawa
Makara Branden May 22 1997 F R 5-9 174 Cumberland
McCaw Luke May 31 1996 F R 5-11 180 Nepean
Cameron Shawn August 30 1995 F R 5-11 189 Cumberland
Blais Jesse April 27 1995 F R 5-11 189 Pembroke
Pearson Jim Dec 14 1995 F R 5-8 170 Ottawa
St.Pierre Maxime April 26 1996 F R 6-2 222 Carleton Place
Larose Michael Dec 13 1997 F L 6-1 187 Cumberland
Frechette Martin May 4 1997 F L 5-7 155 Vermont (16-17) Cumberland
 
NAME TITLE TEAM
Martin Dagenais Head Coach Ottawa Jr Senators
Sylvain Favreau Assistant Coach Cumberland Grads
Dan Sauve Assistant Coach Ottawa Jr Senators
Richard Dupuy Trainer Cumberland Grads
Carmelo Pugliese Equipment Manager Nepean Raiders
Sean Marcellus CCHL Staff CCHL

CCHL TEAM ROBINSON

LAST NAME FIRST NAME MONTH-DAY-YR POS SHOT HT WT NCAA STATUS CURRENT TEAM
DeBrouwer Evan Jan. 31 1997 G L 6’1 201 Smiths Falls
Point Colton March 7 1998 G L 6’3 220 Colgate (17-18) Carleton Place
Henry Jared March 21 1996 D L 6′ 188 Smiths Falls
MacMillan Chris June 13 1995 D R 6’1 192 Smiths Falls
Craig Ross Nov 1 1996 D R 5’11 186 Colgate (16-17) Cornwall
Grant Owen Jan 22 1998 D R 5’11 181 Vermont (17-18) Carleton Place
Wichers Quinn Aug 19 1997 D L 6’4 215 Kemptville
Russell Cameron Aug 25 1995 D L 5’11 175 Kemptville
Curran Johnny March 14 1995 F R 5’9 175 Western Michigan (16-17) Smiths Falls
Batt Lucas May 4 1996 F L 5’11 194 Carleton Place
Larson Jordan May 13 1995 F L 5’9 191 Alabama-Huntsville (16-17) Carleton Place
Murray Brett July 20 1998 F L 6’5 211 Penn State (17-18) Carleton Place
Cooper Grant July 20 1996 F L 6’0 180 Dartmouth (17-18) Cornwall
Lalonde Nick Jan 30 1998 F R 5’9 168 Cornwall
Spink Tanner Sept 4 1996 F L 5’10 175 Cornwall
Folkes Liam Feb 26 1996 F R 5’8 167 Penn State (16-17) Brockville
Tackett Jason Aug 13 1995 F L 5’11 177 Ferris State (16-17) Kemptville
Tugnutt Matt May 14 1996 F L 5’10 181 Kemptville
Cyr Jonathan May 4 1996 F L 6’1 213 Hawkesbury
Van Horn Bryce May 3 1996 F R 6,0 199 Carleton Place
 
NAME TITLE TEAM
Ian MacInnis Head Coach Cornwall Colts
Mark Grady Assistant Coach Smiths Falls
Rick Dorval Assistant Coach Hawkesbury Hawks
Sheldon Adams Trainer Nepean Raiders
Sean Marcellus CCHL Staff CCHL

TEAM MHL

LAST NAME FIRST NAME MONTH-DAY-YR POS SHOT HT WT NCAA STATUS TEAM
Sommers Tanner May 13 1998 G L 5-10 150 Miramichi Timberwolves
Mann-Dixon Blade April 29/1997 G L 5-7 150 Valley Wild
Bernier Alexandre May 26 1997 D R 5-9 160 Dieppe Commandos
Baggs Riley May 5 1997 D R 6-2 175 Truro Bearcats
Paul Matthew May 7 1997 D R 6-0 173 Amherst Ramblers
Dower Lee April 26 1996 D L 5-11 180 Miramichi Timberwolves
Morgan Matthew October 3 1997 D R 5-9 170 Pictou Weeks Crushers
Poirier Michael August 31 1995 D L 6-1 195 Dieppe Commandos
Banville Eddie July 30 1997 F L 5-9 150 Campbelltpn Tigers
Barron Matt March 25 1999 F R 5-10 170 Yarmouth Mariners
MacLeod Gregor June 7 1998 F L 5-11 160 Campbellton Tigers
Hastings Curtis December 27 1996 F L 5-9 170 County Aces
King Sammy May 11 1998 F L 5-9 165 Woodstock Slammers
Deacon John April 8 1995 F R 6-0 175 Valley Wildcats
Erbs Johnny April 9 1996 F L 5-8 177 Woodstock Slammers
Shatford Josh December 3 1996 F R 5-9 180 South Shore Lumberjacks
Stavert Thomas February 20 1995 F L 5-10 185 Summerside Western Capitals
Young Ricky March 19 1996 F L 5-11 180 County Aces
Bridges Blaize February 7 1995 F R 5-8 175 Summerside Western Capitals
Soper Jimmy May 19 1995 F L 6-1 175 Truro Bearcats
NAME TITLE TEAM
Dave Ritcey President NOJHL
Shawn Evans Coach Truro Bearcats
Nick Greenough Coach Valley Wildcats
Josh Heptich Coach County Aces
Ashley Merrithew Athletic Therapist Dieppe Commandos
Steve Lindsay Equipment Manager Truro Bearcats

TEAM LHJQ

LAST NAME FIRST NAME MONTH-DAY-YR POS SHOT HT WT NCAA STATUS TEAM
Dube-Rochon Sebastien July 13 1995 G 5-11 190
Labrecque Brady February 13 1997 G 6-0 176
Fillion Jonathan August 24 1996 D 5-10 177
Larouche Keven April 19 1996 D 6-0 188
Cote William March 14 1997 D 5-9 190
Amyot Mathieu July 12 1996 D 6-3 220
Marcotte David February 17 1995 D 5-11 180
Michaud Edouard September 22 1997 F 6-0 172
Brennan Joey May 1 1997 F 5-7 160
Ouelett Jonathan February 10 1997 F 5-11 185
Caron Joel May 1 1996 F 5-6 172
Boullion Marc-Antoine Februray 16 1995 F 5-10 170
Auger Jeremy March 28 1996 F 5-8 175
St-Hilaire Deven March 3 1995 F 6-0 180
Bernier Justin September 16 1997 F 5-7 150
Pouliot Antoine June 21 1996 F 6-2 200
Lapierre Tommy November 8 1996 F 5-11 190
Beaulieu Jean-Philippe May 19 1996 F 6-1 190
Plante Maxime August 15 1996 F 6-1 175
Boucher Felix November 23 1995 D 6-3 200
NAME TITLE TEAM
Pierre Petroni Head Coach
Jean-Philippe Hamel Assistant Coach
Gianni Cantini Assistant Coach
Stephan Blanchet Assistant Coach
Denis De Lafontaine Trainer

TEAM NOJHL

LAST NAME FIRST NAME MONTH-DAY-YR POS SHOT HT WT NCAA STATUS CURRENT TEAM
Forrest Garrett 07/07/1997 G L 5’11” 170 Powassan Voodoos
Lauzon Jamey 01/10/1997 F L 5’11” 175 Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Arseneau Marc-Antoine 09/11/1995 F R 5’11” 170 Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Pilon Darian 10/02/1998 F R 5’10” 170 Soo Thunderbirds
Jeffries Brett 10/06/1995 F R 5’11” 175 Soo Thunderbirds
Maguire Seamus 12/31/1995 F R 6’1″ 190 Cochrane Crunch
Mooney Ryan 05/05/1998 D R 5’10” 180 Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Chenier Bradley 01/20/1999 F R 5’10” 175 Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Bellini Jaren 05/22/1996 F R 5’9″ 180 Soo Thunderbirds
Desgagnes Adam 03/09/1997 D L 6’0″ 180 Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Nagy Eric 10/28/1997 D R 6’0″ 190 Powassan Voodoos
Harland Steve 05/10/1996 F R 5’10” 170 Powassan Voodoos
Campbell Nathan 04/27/1995 D L 6’0″ 160 Elliot Lake Wildcats
Boman Caleb 11/04/1997 D L 6’0″ 205 Soo Thunderbirds
Salerno Aiden 11/02/1995 D R 6’3″ 210 Soo Thunderbirds
Atchison Hunter 11/06/1996 F R 6’2″ 210 Cochrane Crunch
Peters Tyler 04/21/1996 F R 6’1″ 212 Powassan Voodoos
MacKenzie Alec 04/16/1996 F L 6’4″ 190 Elliot Lake Wildcats
MacLean Spencer 03/26/1996 F L 6’5″ 225 Elliot Lake Wildcats
Mackay Aaron 10/10/1997 G L 6’0″ 190 Elliot Lake Wildcats
NAME TITLE TEAM
Mike Mooney Director of Operations Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Kevin Cain Ass’t Dir. of Operations Soo Thunderbirds
Nathan Hewitt Head Coach Elliot Lake Wildcats
Scott Wray Assistant Coach Powassan Voodoos
Jason Young Assistant Coach Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Lisa Parise Athletic Trainer Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Carla Vine Athletic Trainer Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Bryan Workman Equipment Manager Rayside-Balfour Canadians
Marc Hebert Equipment Manager Soo Thunderbirds
Robert Mazzuca Commissioner NOJHL

TEAM OJHL COFFEY

LAST NAME FIRST NAME POS. DOB HT WT S/C TEAM COMITTMENT
MASTERS Andrew G 25/May/95 6’1″ 210 L Georgetown
LATINOVICH Nick G 4/Mar/97 6’2″ 185 L Orangeville
CURRIE Tyler D 11-Feb-95 5’11” 173 R Toronto Patriots
FALCAO Jake D 3-Feb-97 6’1″ 180 R Wellington
PANETTA Jacob D 16-Jan-96 5’11” 195 L Wellington Colgate (NCAA)
PAUL Willy D 22/Jun/96 6’1″ 195 L Burlington
FERRARO Mario D 17/Sep/98 5’10” 160 L Toronto Patriots Western Michigan (NCAA)
DICLEMENTE Kristopher D 19/Jan/98 6’3″ 195 L Lindsay
CORIC Nikolas F 19/Jan/96 5’10” 175 L Whitby
HUDGIN Jon F 10/Feb/96 5’10” 180 R Pickering
HARDIE Daniel F 11/Jun/98 5’10” 170 L Georgetown
DICKINSON Josh F 17/Nov/97 6’2″ 185 L Georgetown
KEENAN Luke F 22/Jul/98 6′ 185 L Whitby
SEKELYK Chris F 6-Aug-96 6’1″ 200 L Pickering
BERETTA Thomas F 8/Apr/95 6’1″ 192 R St. Michael’s Michigan Tech (NCAA)
FARGEY Hunter F 23/Feb/95 5’11” 185 R Trenton
HANLON Danny F 3/Jan/95 5’10” 177 L Trenton
MORGAN Liam F 27/Jun/98 5’10” 215 R Trenton
JORDAN Noah F 8/Mar/97 6’5″ 219 R St. Michael’s
LATTAVO Thomas F 5/Apr/96 6’2″ 210 R Mississauga

 

Co-Coach:  Joe Washkurak (Mississauga Chargers)
Co-Coach: Brendan Taylor (Oakville Blades)
Athletic Therapist: Sarah Ditmars (Trenton Golden Hawks)
Equipment Manager: Derek Ho (Mississauga Chargers)

 

TEAM OJHL HAWERCHUK

LAST NAME FIRST NAME POS. DOB HT WT S/C TEAM COMITTMENT
COLITTO Nathan G 29-Jun-95 5’11” 170 L Markham
DURANTE Stefano G 4/Jun/96 5’11” 158 L Cobourg
DUNLOP Matthew D 31/Mar/95 5’10” 165 R Markham
BERNARD Matthew D 6/May/97 6’1″ 188 R Aurora Niagara (NCAA)
SMITH Adam D 6/Nov/96 6’2″ 200 L Newmarket Bowling Green (NCAA)
PIZZO Andrew D 8/Aug/96 6’2″ 177 L Buffalo
KUDLA Patrick D 2/Apr/96 6’3″ 185 L Oakville
LOCKE Kyle D 9/May/96 6’2″ 220 R Aurora
VALKO Brendan F 23/Jul/96 5’10” 165 R Markham
RAJIC Christian F 2/Jun/97 5’8″ 155 R Oakville
BOARD Drake F 8/Jan/96 5’7″ 150 L Aurora Niagara (NCAA)
MANTENUTO Daniel F 18/Oct/97 5’10” 165 L Aurora Robert Morris (NCAA)
RINALDI Anthony F 17/Aug/95 6′ 180 R Kingston
TONGE Colin F 10/Feb/98 5’10” 180 L Kingston Princeton (NCAA)
SPIVAK Aaron F 13/Jan/95 6′ 185 L Markham
WISEMAN Ethan F 14/Sep/97 6’1″ 190 R Orangeville
GARVEY Ryan F 27/Jun/96 6′ 190 L Oakville
STACK Connor F 7/Jul/95 6′ 180 L Orangeville
WORRAD Drew F 30/Jun/97 6′ 175 R Oakville Clarkson (NCAA)
RIGNEY Colin F 16/Aug/96 6′ 180 L Orangeville

 

Co-Coach: Dan West (Lindsay Muskies)
Co-Coach: Brent Hughes (North York Rangers)
Athletic Therapist: Julie Chiu (Aurora Tigers)
Equipment Manager: Harvey Boutilier (Toronto Patriots)            

TEAM OJHL NIEUWENDYK

LAST NAME FIRST NAME POS. DOB HT WT S/C TEAM COMMITMENT
URBANI Daniel G 21/Jun/95 6′ 200 L Trenton
McGRATH Jacob G 11/Aug/99 6′ 152 L St. Michael’s Sudbury (OHL)
OLIVER Blayne D 17/Mar/95 5’11” 185 L Trenton
ROY Brennan D 1/Nov/96 6′ 192 L Cobourg
O’HARA Jon D 2/Apr/95 6′ 185 R Whitby Mercyhurst (NCAA)
THOM Matthew D 18/May/98 6’3″ 200 R Georgetown Princeton (NCAA)
DUNN Sam D 11/Mar/98 6’2″ 218 R Cobourg
CAIRNS Matthew D 27/Apr/98 6’3″ 203 L Georgetown Cornell (NCAA)
SMILSKY Lucas F 26/May/97 5’7″ 160 R Orangeville
MAIOLINO Justin F 1/Feb/95 5’7″ 165 R Toronto Jr. Canadiens Niagara (NCAA)
URSITTI Nicholas F 1/Feb/96 5’8″ 170 R Toronto Patriots
BERGER Christopher F 14/Apr/98 5’10” 171 L Buffalo Brown (NCAA)
EVANCHO Zach F 2/Jun/95 5’8″ 160 L Buffalo Army (NCAA)
NICKSIC Tim F 15/Mar/96 5’10” 175 R Buffalo
LOCKE Brenden F 9/Oct/97 5’10” 176 L Cobourg
KIRTON Scott F 24/Aug/96 6’1″ 175 L Whitby
McLAUGHLIN James F 13/Apr/96 6′ 200 L Orangeville Dartmouth (NCAA)
TAYLOR Ryan F 27-Jan-96 6′ 180 R Whitby
BROWN Lucas F 25/Sep/96 5’10” 190 R Trenton
LEWIS Theo F 2/Jul/96 6’3″ 205 R Cobourg

               

Co-Coach: Mark Jooris (Burlington Cougars)
Co-Coach: Kirby Tokarski (Burlington Cougars)
Athletic Therapist: TBD
Equipment Manager: Craig Clayton (Oakville Blades)    

TEAM OJHL OATES

LAST NAME FIRST NAME POS. DOB HT WT S/C TEAM COMMITMENT  
BAGGETTA Gianluca G 31-Dec-95 5’10” 170 L North York
LOPAPA Daniel G 2/May/96 5’10” 175 R Toronto Jr. Canadiens
DeSOUSA Daniel D 14/Mar/96 5’11” 180 R Mississauga
TOPATIGH Derek D 3/Mar/97 5’11” 185 R Orangeville Princeton (NCAA)
COFFEY Blake D 27-Jan-98 5’11” 180 R Pickering
SZABO Jeremy D 7/Apr/95 5’11” 200 L North York
BRAND Justin D 12/Jan/96 6’2″ 185 L Whitby
O’GRADY Ryan D 27/May/95 6′ 205 L Cobourg
MORGAN Michael F 27/May/95 5’9″ 165 R North York
TEOFILO Joseph F 26/May/97 5’9″ 160 R Milton
SOKAY Ben F 24-Jan-97 6′ 175 R Wellington Niagara (NCAA)
GOMES Nathan F 23/Sep/96 5’10” 185 L Burlington
JEFFERS Jack F 21/Sep/97 5’11” 175 L Burlington
THOMSON David F 8/Oct/97 5’10” 180 L Burlington
VOLPE Dan F 19/Mar/95 5’11” 190 L Burlington
CAMPOLI Nick F 16-Feb-99 5’11” 174 L North York
TAKAMATSU Ryan F 23/May/97 6′ 170 R North York
BALES Jackson F 28/Aug/97 6’1″ 180 R Oakville Merrimack (NCAA)
KOSACK Josh F 25/Jun/97 6′ 185 R Oakville
BROWN Luc F 27-Apr-96 6′ 175 R Wellington Union (NCAA)  

               

Co-Coach: Jamie Caruso (Orangeville Flyers)
Co-Coach: Mario Cicchillo (Toronto Jr. Canadiens)
Athletic Therapist: Amanda Gilroy (Markham Royals)
Equipment Manager: Andrew Groombridge (Georgetown Raiders)                                                                                        

CORNWALL COLTS TO HOST FIRST EVER MIDGET/JUNIOR TRAINING CAMP

From the press release sent earlier this week:

The Cornwall Colts are pleased to announce their first ever combined Junior/Midget AAA training camp.

Midget and Junior aged players can register beginning Monday, August 10th.The first day of camp will be fitness testing at the Benson Centre on Friday, August 21st and players will begin skating on Saturday, August 22nd.

“It’s a good opportunity for the players to realize what it takes to play at a high level,” said Colts Coach Ian MacInnis.

The training camp schedule is as follows:

August 21st, Fitness Testing – Jiffy Auto Service Field House @ Benson Centre

August 22nd, daily on ice sessions begin

August 25th, Midget AAA Colts @ Hawkesbury

August 27th, Colts Jr. A Blue & White game 8pm @ Ed Lumley Arena

August 28th, Colts Jr. A @ Hawkesbury

August 30th, Colts Jr. A vs. Hawks 2pm @ Ed Lumley Arena
                         Midget AAA vs Hawks 5pm @ Ed Lumley Arena
For more information about HEO Midget AAA please visit http://heomidget.pointstreaksites.com/view/heomidget .

For more information on the camp or to register, please contact Ian MacInnis – ian.macinnis@cornwallcolts.com or 613-662-3216

(Photo: Robert Lefevbre, Ice Level)

The Road To Professional Hockey: Michael Buonincontri

On the eve of his first professional season, Michael Buonincontri has seen quite a bit of the North American junior hockey landscape. Born into the legendary hockey city of Montreal, Quebec, it was a no brainer that Buonincontri’s parents put him in skates at three years old. Like any other Canadian kid, the game of hockey became an obsession and the dream of playing professional became the front runner in Buonicontri’s mind.

Buonicontri in Colorado.
Buonicontri in Colorado.

Working his skill and plying his trade throughout Montreal and a triple A league down in Colorado, Buonicontri looked up the courage of Saku Koivu to earn his place on the ice. Of course it helped that Koivu was captain of his favourite National Hockey League team too; the Montreal Canadiens. Koivu’s attribute of being a leader on and off the ice lead Buonincontri to adopt the number 11 as his own. A number he still wears today.

His play and determination was noticed. After a short stint with the Cornwall Colts of the Central Canada Hockey League, a rival team in the Smith Falls Bears pried him away. It was here, in this small community of 10,000 southwest of Ottawa, where Buonincontri excelled and made himself a name. “Smith Falls is a place where I was welcomed by everyone. Teammates, staff and fans,” Buonincontri said. “I felt at home and being in a comfortable environment I was able to translate the positivity onto the ice.” And translate he did. In his first two years with the Bears,

Bounincontri with Smith Falls. (photo: Jason Code)
Bounincontri with Smith Falls. (photo: Jason Code)

Buonincontri notched 56 points in 60 games. At almost a point a game player, his offensive ability started turning heads. A natural power forward, Buonincontri was starting to be compared to Montreal Canadiens sharpshooter Max Pacioretty. “I thank Mark Grady for giving me the opportunity that he did for me to succeed,” said Buonincontri. “I feel I was put in an important role and I was there to help the team win every night.” That role lead him an invitation to compete for Team Canada East however an injury before training camp put a stop to that. Faced with adversity seems to be his strong suit and he never let the injury bring him down. Good thing because important people were paying attention to his play and the phone started ringing.

1425538_10151703568072186_594383780_n
With Sioux Falls

Bounincontri jumped on the chance of gaining more experience with the Sioux Falls Stampede of the United States Hockey League; a team that has graduated the likes of T.J. Oshie and Thomas Vanek into the NHL. A more defensive league, Buonincontri gathered not only hockey experience but valuable life experience in being so far from home in South Dakota. Along with it, he committed himself to St. Cloud State University. However, it was that little town in the middle of Ontario that was pulling on his heart strings. “I was kind of “team sick”. I missed my teammates, staff and fans back in Smiths Falls. It’s a place I felt the most at home. So decided to return.” Buonincontri returned with a vengeance and scored 29 points in 26 games. “The CCHL has grown to be in the top leagues in Canada and has graduated some very good players.” said Buonincontri of his time there.

With Prince George (Photo: Christian J Stewart)
With Prince George (Photo: Christian J Stewart)

As a prospect with St. Cloud State, Buonincontri had the chance to finish out his junior career in the British Columbia Hockey League with both the West Kelowna Warriors and the Prince George Spruce Kings. He stayed dominant and got involved with the community off the ice, no doubt a great quality to have on the heels of a University career. The BCHL fit right with the style of Buonicontri’s play. He exploded offensively and was a pivotal role in the Spruce King’s playoff run. “The BCHL is a very professional league. One of the most fun I had playing hockey with two great organizations.” Remembered Buonincontri. “The skill and compete level is as good as the USHL. There are a lot of great players but it’s the depth on every team is what separates those leagues from any other league I’ve played in.”

As his junior career ended, Buonincontri started to feel that the University route just wasn’t for him. He had the skill. He had the determination. He had the compete level. It was time to turn pro.

When Buonincontri de-committed from St. Cloud State, the offers started to pour in from North America. Teams in the East Coast Hockey League were jumping at the chance to land a powerhouse Canadian forward for their squad. The professional North American hockey market is a tough one to crack but Buonincontri would have had no problem. However, teams from across the pond came calling with better deals.

4ikiCHo9“It’s always been my dream to play professional hockey overseas.” laughed Buonincontri. He had a few to pick through but it was Les Corsaires De Dunkerque, a Division 1 team based in Dunkerque, France that became the right move for him. “They’re a great organization and well respected throughout the country of France,” continued Buonincontri. “My agent was in contact with them for a while and they showed the most interest. After talking to several people who played in France and doing my research on the club, I decided it would be a great fit for me to sign there.” No doubt that growing up in french centric Montreal also appealed to the brass in Dunkerque.

The hockey in France in definitely something to pay attention too. France in general is catching up in the IIHF rankings; they currently sit in 12th, just 100 points shy of the top ten.  The style of play in Division 1 will benefit from Buonincontri’s explosive offense. His ability to read the playand be two steps ahead of it is an asset Dunkerque will need to compete hard.

(Photo: Garrett James)
(Photo: Garrett James)

“I want to play professional hockey for as long as I can,” smiled Buonincontri. “My parents put me on skates at the age of three and I fell in love with the game.” As always with players, it’s family that usually makes the most sacrifices. “My family has been supporting me all my life and I owe all my success to them. I couldn’t be where I am today without their help.”

When the puck drops in this fall, Michael Buonincontri is set to take all of the experience he gained in the various junior leagues in North America to the bright white ice of Dunkerque, France. One thing’s for sure, this player is one to watch for many years to come.

CCHL announces players for 4th annual Central Canada Cup All-Star Challenge

cchl

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Central Canada Hockey League is pleased to announce the participants selected for the 4th Annual Central Canada Cup All-Star Challenge to be held at the MasterCard Centre in Toronto, ON November 14-16, 2014.

Among the forty players selected are 18 who have committed to attend NCAA Division I programs and 3 players rated by NHL Central Scouting for the 2015 draft.

League leading Carleton Place Canadians also led the way with seven players selected, including Bowling Green bound captain Stephen Baylis, 2013-14 CCHL and CJHL MVP Penn State commit Andy Sturtz, veteran centres Jordan Larson and Craig Peffley (Ferris State) as well as defencemen David Eccles and Cornell bound Trent Shore. Goalie Guillaume Therrien who backstopped the Canadians to the RBC Final last season also was named.

Five members of the Pembroke Lumber Kings were selected including the high-flying line of Anthony Nellis, Alexandre Boivin and Canisius bound Felix Chamberland as well as Colgate recruit Adam Dauda.  Goaltender Connor Hughes rounds out the Pembroke contingent.

Four members of the Fred Page Cup host Cornwall Colts will participate including Clarkson bound captain Marly Quince, linemate Kevin Hope and the dynamic defence pairing of Zac Tierney and Ross Craig who are headed to Ferris State and Cornell respectively join four Smiths Falls Bears including top scorer and Princeton commit Neil Doef as well as defenders Jared Henry and Chris MacMillan and goaltender Cole Skinner in Toronto.

Three members of the Yzerman Division leading Ottawa Jr Senators with Alexandre Savard in goal, and veteran rearguards Matt Cruickshank and Robert Michel join three Nepean Raiders in Josh Zizek, Broydon Stufko and Robert Morris commit Brandon Watt in the event.

Top scorer Ryan Kuffner (Princeton) and linemates Max Veronneau (Princeton) and Matt Foget (Merrimack) represent the Gloucester Rangers as a high flying unit with three Hawkesbury Hawks, forwards Jason Brochu, Hunter Racine (Colgate) and defenceman Damien Charette.and three Brockville Braves-Andrew Peski, RMU bound Eric Israel and Liam Folkes also selected.

A pair of Kemptville 73’s in Jason Tackett and Erik Brown and two Cumberland Grads, Max St. Pierre and Dartmouth defenceman Cameron Roth with Kanata’s Domenic Camastra round out the rosters.

The tournament begins on Friday November 14 and concludes on Sunday November 16.

One on One with former Carleton Place Canadian captain, Elie Ghantous

To say that Elias Ghantous had a huge season last year would be an understatement. In his fourth and final season with the Carleton Place Canadians, Ghantous captained and lead his squad to not only win the Bogart Cup but the Fred Page Cup as well. If it weren’t for a couple of brief moments in the last game of the Royal Bank Cup tournament that showcases that countries best Junior A teams, he could have put RBC Cup champion on his resume. However, being second in the country isn’t a bad showing either. It’s also not very often that a bodycheck from the CCHL makes Yahoo Sports either.

Ghantous is currently suiting up for his first season at Robert Morris University. I caught up with him to talk about his amazing final Junior A season.

(Photo: Robert Lefevbre. IceLevel.com)
(Photo: Robert Lefevbre. IceLevel.com)

March Hockey: What was like to captain the Carleton Place Canadians last year? Did you feel you needed to change your ways as a player?

Elie Ghantous: Not at all, I just knew that i was going to be a big influence on my teammates and made sure my work ethic was perfect in order to make them better. I loved being the captain, I feel like I’ve always been a leader and it really helped that every one last year was on board with our team goal.

MH: Of course winning the Fred Page Cup is a huge accomplishment as a Captain in that you’ve lead your team to the holy grail. How did you and the team prepare for that series and what was it like to finally raise the cup?

EG: The Fred Page Cup was a great experience as a team. It sort of brought back the minor hockey tournament feel in all of us and it was just exciting. The captains all played an important role in maintaining the team focused. We had a lot of things up against us; we were mistreated at times but we managed to push through that and go undefeated. Lifting that cup was a great feeling (a lot heavier than I expected!) and it made us realize that we had our ticket to the Nationals. I still remember it like it was yesterday.

 

(Photo: Robert Lefevbre)
(Photo: Robert Lefevbre)

MH: Making the finals of the RBC Cup is an even bigger accomplishment! I remember smiling as I saw a team from the CCHL on TSN. How was the experience of playing hockey in front of a national audience for you? Was it intimidating with not only the media but the weight of the tournament itself?

EG: Playing at the RBC cup was a dream come true. The atmosphere was just awesome and Team Canada ran a top notch tournament. We had access to food, gatorade, and water at any time. It made us feel like a professional team and it showed in our play. Playing in the final game I was very nervous at first but I remembered that all my friends and family were watching back home and all I wanted to do was play hockey. Most definitely the best hockey experience of my life so far.

MH: This is your first year suiting up for the Robert Morris Colonials of Robert Morris University. How did you prepare during the offseason for your first NCAA season?

EG: I trained at the Ottawa Sports Performance Centre, like I have for almost 8 summers now and I just focused on my foot speed. My workout partners are also NCAA athletes and I received a lot of knowledge through them about what i needed to work on. Lifting 5 days a week and skating twice a week was what I did and i enjoyed every second of it.

MH: Where do you see your hockey career taking you?

EGI hope to one day, like any other hockey player, play professional hockey. I realize now that it is very hard to make it to a professional league so going to school gives me something to fall back on. Hockey has brought me here so far and I’m already ecstatic about where I am now.

MH:  Who do you look up to most if anybody for your style of play?

EG: I’ve always admired Scott Stevens. He was feared by all in the league and with obvious reasons. His defensive play and hard hits and synonymous with my style. He was also a great leader and won the Stanley Cup 3 times. 

(Photo: Robert Lefevbre.)
(Photo: Robert Lefevbre.)

MH:  If you could play against any player from any decade, who would it be and why?

EG: The league is just so good now that I would love to play against anyone in the league. But first I would love the opportunity to make one of those teams. If I were to pick one person, it would be Sidney Crosby. I would like to play against him just to compare myself to the very best and see how I would do.

Thanks so much for your answers Elie! I’m going to check in with you half way through the season and see how far you’ve come along with the Colonials! All the best for the first part!

Feel free to follow me on Twitter: @MarchHockey and like the page on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/MarchHockey for more player one on ones this season!

One on One with Pembroke Lumber King, Adam Dauda

10393316466_f6860938ae_zFresh off his commitment announcement to Colgate University, Adam Dauda took the time to speak to me about his hockey prowess. Born in Slovakia, the aptly nicknamed “Slovakian Stallion” has been recently acquired by the Pembroke Lumber Kings this season after a couple of years suiting up for the Cambridge Winterhawks of the GOJHL. The 19 year old powerhouse is expected to light up the lamp for the Lumber Kings in a promising way this season.

March Hockey: You were a huge force with Cambridge last year. What do you think you can bring to the Pembroke Lumber Kings this season

Adam Dauda:  I think by playing in big key moments last year; whether it was to shut down an opponents top line or try to get the game tying or winning goal has helped me a tremendous amount to stay calm but at the same time be excited for big moments like that, Hopefully my experience with it there will come in handy.

MH: You’ve played a season of junior in Slovakia. Is there any differences to the junior scene over there as compared to here? Do you have a favourite moment that stands out from playing overseas?

AD: There are some very big differences between the junior hockey here and in Slovakia.  All the games over there are played on Olympic sized rinks which means a lot more skating. For me, that usually isn’t the greatest but it gives everyone a little bit more time with the puck to make smarter decisions. The players over there are a lot more skilled and a lot softer.  There wasn’t too much hitting in the games also due to the big ice and the players didn’t seem nearly as strong as the ones here. However, the guys over there definitely taught me how to be a more skilled player.

MH: How would you describe your style of play? Is there any player you look up too?

AD: I really look up to Marian Hossa and his style of play.  Even though he’s a winger and I’m center I try to play like him; strong on the puck, skilled, good vision, and still back checks like no other.  Also, the fact that he’s Slovak too makes me a bit bias.

MH: What’s your game time routine like?

1390684_567066040014895_118771184_nAD:  My game time routine has changed a lot over the years but for the past two seasons it’s stayed pretty much the same.  I have to listen to The Language by Drake and then a few other songs before every game.  They don’t necessarily fire me up it’s a ritual now that I have to do.  My warm up clothes have consisted of my jock and flip flops and some pre game sewer ball victories have to be mixed in there too.

MH: Where would like your hockey career to take you?

AD: I would love to go to a good Division 1 school in the states and then hopefully play in the NHL one day.  Playing pro over in Europe would be a bit of a dream come true as well.

MH: If you could play against any player, who would it be and why?

AD: If I could play against anyone I would probably pick Alex Ovechkin just because he is one of the best to ever play hockey.

One on One with Ottawa Jr. Senator Matt Cruickshank

(Photo: Todd Hambleton, Standard Freeholder)
(Photo: Todd Hambleton, Standard Freeholder)

Matt Cruickshank may be only 19 years old but he’s certainly making a name for himself on and off the ice. The Owen Sound, Ontario native was acquired by Ottawa from the Cornwall Colts and as a veteran in the CCHL, he is excited to become a leader with a new group of young players.  At 6’0″, the towering defenseman holds the blue line like there’s no tomorrow but with his skill is able to join the rush. No doubt eyes will be watching his play this year. I had a little chat with Cruickshank and it’s amazing to see a player of his age so humble and have a good head on his shoulders.

March Hockey: What do you think you’ll be able to bring to the Jr. Senators this CCHL season? How do you think the Ottawa Jr. Senators will do?

Matt Cruickshank: This year I am a veteran in the league with some high level experience in the game. With half my team being rookies I hope to bring leadership and confidence to the locker room. It’s my job to let all players know that I got their back if ever needed on or off the ice. Also my defensive role will be a factor to our already well rounded defense core.

So far with a record of 0-2-3 we are being doubted from other teams and people around the league. As a leader of the team and knowing the amazing players and coaching staff we have, our record now does not fear me at all. With half of our team being hard working speedy rookies and the other half being committed mentoring veterans, I truly believe we can be a top 5 finishing team in the league. Just need to stay positive and stick to what we are doing. The wins will come.

MH: How would you describe your style of play? What players do you look up to, if any?

6zyrvm6QMC: I consider myself as a stay at home defenseman. The kind of guy to get lots of penalty killing time to block shots, keep the puck out of my net,  and play against top lines. Just because I lack skill, doesn’t mean I don’t have a role. I would compare my game to someone like Adam Foote or Scott Stevens.

MH: How was the experience of representing Team Canada East last year? What did you learn?

MC: My experience at Canada East will last a lifetime. From one week not even knowing what Canada East was to being able to put on the red and white was just a dream come true. The feeling you get stepping on that ice with over a thousand screaming fans in read and white still gives me shivers today. Besides the hockey aspect, I had a great time touring Nova Scotia with the guys and seeing a part of our beautiful country that I’ve never seen before. Also can’t forget I had my first lobster!

MH: Off of the ice, you are dedicated with volunteering. Obviously that’s a great characteristic to have. Why do you think it’s important to give back?

487643_10200624042791704_802508983_nMC: Growing up as a young kid I lived for the game of hockey. I would always watch NHL on team and go to local Jr. B and OHL games in my hometown of Owen Sound to cheer the players and guys that I looked up to. If I saw them slam their stick then I would too; if I saw them with a certain haircut I’d get the same. So saying that I find it very important to be a role model off the ice for young athletes to follow because if they see you being respectful, caring, and a nice person off the ice, those characteristics will be noticed and rub off on them. To completely answer your question, it’s important to give back because without the community, or family and the people around us, we would not be where we are today. Just because I am busy with junior hockey, doesn’t mean I can’t give back to help others succeed and make their life easier, the same way others did for me when I needed it. A smile goes a long way!

MH: Where do you see your hockey career taking you?

MC: Well being 19 I need to be realistic with my hockey career. I love the game and will do anything I can to be the best I can be. But saying that, my dream is to finish off my junior career on a high note and attend university at the highest level possible playing hockey and getting my degree.

MH: If you could watch one game between any two teams of your choice, who would you choose and why?

MC: I’d have to say Slap Shots Charlstown Chiefs and the Cornwall River Kings. Most likely my favorite movie ever and the most exciting and entertaining team to watch last year. Who wouldn’t wanna grab a bag of popcorn and watch that game.

Fred Page Cup history Part One: who is Fred Page?

(Photo: Mike Carrocetto)
(Photo: Mike Carrocetto)

 

Last season marked the 20th anniversary of the Fred Page Cup, a distinguished trophy given out to the best team of a four team tournament. Making up the tournament quad would be the respective season champions from Ontario’s Central Canada Hockey League, Quebec’s Junior AAA Hockey League, the Maritime’s Junior Hockey League and the team whose city has won hosting capabilities. The winner moves on the Royal Bank Cup, Canada’s national Junior “A” championship.

Most of us who follow junior hockey have heard of the tournament. Some have even taken part in some aspect be it spectator, volunteer or player. Some have read about it in the newspaper. The question is though, do you know how the Fred Page Cup came to be? Do you even know who Fred Page is? Well, grab a cold pop and sit back while Marchy tells you the tale.

Frederick Page was born September 29, 1915 in Port Arthur and at the time, Port Arthur was a city in Northern Ontario. In January of 1970, Port Arthur, the town of Fort William, and a couple of nearby townships, joined forces to become what we know as Thunder Bay.

Fred_pageEven though Page was trapped further north than most, he didn’t let his unique location get in the way of his love for hockey. Furthermore, there was no shortage of the game in the area. Page’s first championship trophy came in 1935 under the wing of the Port Arthur Juniors who claimed the title for the Thunder Bay Amateur Hockey Association. After an early choice to retire from the game as a player in 1939, Page turned his hand to refereeing and coaching. For the next 15 years, he switched back and forth from coaching and referring in the Fort William Minor Hockey Association and refereeing in the aforementioned Thunder Bay league.

His skills as an official caught the eye of national attention. Page received and accepted an invitation to keep control of games in the 1958 Memorial and Allen Cup playoffs.

The 50’s and 60’s got even busier for Page. The early 1960’s saw him make the move out west to British Columbia and turn his focus to the administration part of the game. He was executive staff and sometimes president of various leagues in the area. He also began work nationally with the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association and coordinated Canadian team entries into European tournaments. That job grew into the 1970’s as Page continued to negotiate teams and tournaments between the two continents. It grew so much that Page was elected to represent Canada in the International Ice Hockey Federation.

Page helped organize World Championships and helped grow hockey internationally during the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France. He was also the chairman for the hockey competition for the 1972 games in Sapporo, Japan. Back home, Page showed no signs of slowing down as he helped form the Pacific Coast Junior Hockey League in 1973 which eventually merged with the British Columbia Junior Hockey League in 1997 and is now the league that we know today. Their league championship is also named in his honour.

header

Fred Page played a pretty important role in our country for not only in development of hockey but in branding and awareness. His contribution throughout the entire country for junior and amateur hockey spans over seven decades. For his monumental efforts, Page was elected in the Hockey Hall of Fame as a honourary member in 1993. Fred Page died in 1997. His selfless efforts to the game we love will never be forgotten. We will keep Page’s memory alive as long as there’s kids playing hockey.

The 2015 Fred Page Cup will take play in Cornwall, Ontario. The Central Canada Hockey League’s Cornwall Colts are eager to hit the ice and represent the host city and keep the Fred Page flame burning.

Yanik Laliberte breaks CCHL record of most games played; CCHL playoffs commence

Laliberte receiving his monumental plaque.
Laliberte receiving his monumental plaque.

An exciting finish to the end of the CCHL Junior A season came in the form of a make up game between the Hawkesbury Hawks and the Ottawa Jr. Senators. When Yanik Laiberte placed his skates on the ice at the Bob Hartley arena, he not only reached a personal milestone but broke records.

The 20 year old from Rockland, Ontario has played the past five years and his entire junior career with the Hawkesbury Hawks. As his junior career comes to an end, he can leave knowing he pulled the Hawk crest down over his head 287 times; the most games played for one player in CCHL history and franchise history.

The rest of his squad pulled out a win to cap off his career in the form of a shoot-out. Even though they gave up a 4 goal lead in the third period, overtime couldn’t solve matters was both benches exhausted themselves to the very end. Laliberte himself ended the 6-5 victory with 3 assists. That’s all she wrote for the Hawks however, as they failed to make the playoffs.

The teams that did will open up their first rounds beginning in 7 days. After a well deserved week off expect to see the Kemptville 73’s take on the first place Carleton Place Canadiens,  the Nepean Raiders tangling with the Smith Falls Bears, the feisty Cornwall Colts will see action against the Ottawa Jr. Senators and the final match up will have the Brockville Braves taking on the Pembroke Lumber Kings.

The race to the Bogart Cup begins with the series of Kemtpville/Carleton Place, and Nepean/Smith Falls on March 11th. Puck drop is 7:30 and you can catch every game on www.fasthockey.com

Hawks soar to 4 point weekend

hawks_logo1After a stunning victory Friday night at home against the Kemptville 73’s, Hawkesbury rolled into the Navan Memorial Centre on Sunday afternoon with only one thing on their mind: keep the momentum going.

Their opponents for the night were the Cumberland Grads who just days before made a coaching change. The Hawks top line of Yanik Laliberte, Francis Landers, and Carl Faucher took advantage of the situation and exploded for 10 points to topple the Grads 5-1. Hawks goaltender Matthew Jenkins stood tall and and played a solid game to pick up the win.

Friday night’s home ice advantage certainly paid off as the Hawks rallied back from a 3-1 deficit and a very rough second period to bring the 73’s into a shootout. After 5 shooters it was Laliberte who became the hero and secured the win.
Hawkesbury will have to definitely keep this winning momentum going as they head into their next game this coming Friday, December 2nd. The Hawks host the Smith Falls Bears at the Robert Hartley Arena. Puck drop is 7:30.