Carter Verhaeghe (Photo: www.niagaraicedogs.net)
Carter Verhaeghe (Niagara, OHL)
All in all, it’s been a great season for Carter Verhaeghe. Although he couldn’t keep up with the near two-points-per-game pace he set for himself early in the year, Verhaeghe still finished the OHL regular season with 28 goals and 82 points in 65 games – good for 21st in league scoring. Those are some pretty solid numbers for a 3rd round pick in his Draft +1 year.
With the regular season completed, Verhaeghe will move on to a much greater challenge. His Niagara IceDogs currently hold down the 7th seed in the Eastern Conference Quarter Finals, and will begin their series with North Bay on Friday. First off, wow, that’s a long bus ride. Second, the Battalion’s stingy defense allowed only 189 goals against all season, 3rd lowest in the league. Verhaeghe might need that early season scoring touch if Niagara hopes to make a series of it.
Connor Brown (Erie, OHL)
Connor Brown completed his OHL regular season with two helpers in an 8-4 Erie victory over Sarnia on Saturday night. In 68 games, the skilled right winger scored 45 goals and added 83 assists while sporting a +44. Brown’s 128 points is the most in a single season since Tyler Donati, Sergei Kostitsyn, John Tavares, and Patrick Kane scored 129, 131, 134, and 145 respectively in the 2006-07 OHL season. That’s not bad company – hell, Donati is a point-per-game player in Austria!
Tony Cameranesi and Dominic Toninato (Minnesota Duluth, NCAA)
With Western Michigan eliminating Minnesota-Duluth in the NCHC quarter finals, both Tony Cameranesi’s and Dominic Toninato’s seasons have come to an end.
Cameranesi, who impressed with 34 points in 38 games in his freshman season, only managed 21 points in 36 games this year. It’s a little alarming when a player’s goal scoring is cut in half, but a closer look at shooting percentage suggests this was an uncharacteristically down year. In 2012-2013, Cameranesi scored 14 goals on 138 shots – that’s 10.1%. A year later, 7 goals on a team-leading 117 shots equals only 5.9%. It wasn’t a great year, but with two more seasons ahead of him in the NCAA, Cameranesi has a lot of time to turn things around before he turns pro.
Toninato didn’t put up lofty freshmen numbers like Cameranesi did, but seven goals and 15 points in 35 games isn’t a terrible rookie campaign either. Toninato also took more face-offs than any other Bulldog (including Cameranesi), which is a compliment in and of itself (despite only winning 46.2% of them). Like Cameranesi, Toninato is a long-term project and will likely spend the next two to three years with the Minnesota-Duluth program.
Other Prospect Notes
– Matt Finn finishes the year 2nd in league scoring amongst defenders with 14 goals, 61 points, and a +57 in 66 games played, helping Guelph to the best record in the OHL.
– Ryan Rupert, who we haven’t talked about in forever, had a career year for the London Knights with 21 goals and 73 points in 68 games played.
– Frederik Gauthier finishes the year with 22 goals and 60 points in 62 games played, and his Rimouski Oceanic begin their first round playoff series against Chicoutimi on Friday.
– Hero of the People Fabrice Herzog completes his first season in North America, scoring 32 goals and 58 points in 61 games for the Quebec Remparts.
– Antoine Bibeau, the Leafs only goaltender in junior, finished the season with 21 wins in 48 appearances for both Charlottetown and Val D’or, sporting a .907 SV% and a 3.17 GAA.
– University of New Hampshire defender Eric Knodel is having his best collegiate season to date with 27 points in 39 games. His Wildcats trumped Northeastern this weekend and will face off against Providence in the Hockey East Semifinals this coming weekend.