Taylor Hale led the defensive effort and helped get the offense started for the Boston Junior Bandits, who have maintained a three-game shutout while starting 3-0 in the Metropolitan Junior Hockey League.
Hale, 20, from Glendora, Calif., was plus-10 with assists in each game when the Junior Bandits blanked the Frederick Freeze 7-0 and the Washington Junior Nationals 10-0.
“Taylor consistently made good outlet passes and played well in his own zone,” Boston coach Scott Drevitch said in a story on the league Web site announcing Hale as the Metro’s No. 1 star of the week. “ … He is making good decisions with, and without, the puck.”
NEW LEADER: The Illiana Blackbirds swept three games from the Wooster Oilers to take over the Minnesota League Great Lakes Division lead. Adamson Thoma scored the Blackbirds’ first two goals in Friday’s 4-3 win.
Chad Miller and Anthony DiDiana each had a goal and an assist in Saturday’s 4-2 victory, then Miller added two more in a 5-1 win Sunday.
COLLEGE COMMITMENTS: Players from two of the United States Hockey League’s top teams announced college commitments this week.
Forward Max McHugh from the Dubuque Fighting Saints, one of two USHL teams still unbeaten at 3-0, will play at the University of Alabama-Huntsville beginning next season. The 20-year-old from Edgewood, Wash. has an assist and is plus-3 in his first USHL season while serving as an assistant captain. McHugh shared the North American Hockey League lead with eight game-winning goals last season, his third with the Wenatchee Wild.
Team USA is 6-2 for the most standings points of any USHL team. Two of its players, forward Michael Floodstrand and defenseman Jack Dougherty, announced their college decisions. Floodstrand is headed to Harvard University and Dougherty is headed to the University of Wisconsin.
Floodstrand, 16, from Hinsdale, Ill., scored a short-handed goal in his USHL debut. He has two goals and two assists in five games with Team USA’s Under-17 squad.
Dougherty has two assists in three games with Team USA’s Under-18 squad. The 17-year-old from Cottage Grove, Minn. is tied for second in the USHL at plus-7.
USHL BLANKS: Omaha Lancers and goalie Cole Bruns improved to 3-0 and still have not allowed a goal after Bruns made 25 saves in a 4-0 win over the Sioux Falls Stampede.
Dubuque matched Omaha at 3-0 when goalie Christian Frey remained unscored upon in his two starts with 17 saves in a 4-0 shutout of the Green Bay Gamblers.
Eric Schierhorn made 33 saves Friday night when the Muskegon Lumberjacks made it to 4-0 with a 3-0 win over the Fargo Force. Fargo handed Muskegon its first loss the next night when goalie Cam Johnson made 34 saves in a 2-0 win.
Jacob Johansson of the Tri-City Storm joined Bruns, Frey and Schierhorn with goals-against averages under 1.00 after he had 35 saves in a 1-0 win over the Des Moines Buccaneers.
ONE-TIMERS: Evan Hauser has 105 saves while allowing just one goal and helping the Great Falls Americans to the American West Hockey League’s best record at 4-0. … The Wichita Falls Wildcats swept weekend games from the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees to take over the NAHL South Division lead. … The New Hampshire Junior Monarchs have the Eastern Hockey League’s top three scorers with assist leader and points co-leader Shawn Nelson, points co-leader Payton Baldillez, and goal leader Eric Berglund. … Kade Morrison scored twice and Walker Bass made 43 saves as the Michigan Mountain Cats posted their second win of the NA3HL season with a 4-2 win over the Toledo Cherokee. ... The West Sound Warriors have outscored Northern Pacific League opponents 38-5 while starting 4-0. … Ted McCarran scored two unassisted goals on the special teams when the Islanders Hockey Club defeated the South Shore Kings 6-1 the United States Premier Hockey League.
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.