By Joshua Boyd / USPHL.com
Charlotte Rush (4-0-0-0)
The Rush extended their winning streak to seven games with a 4-0 run in Estero, Fla., matching the success of their Premier team win for win. Not only did the Rush win all three games, they managed to shut out three opponents – the Tampa Bay Juniors (2-0), the Florida Jr. Blades (5-0), and the Florida Eels (5-0). They were 4-2 winners against the Florida Jr. Blades as well.
Top Scorers (by position): Yianni Tsatsoulis F (3-2-5), Benjamin Pearson D (1-4-5)
Top Goaltenders: Perry Jacobs, 1-0, 27 saves on 27 shots (27/27), 1.000 save percentage (SV%), 0.00 goals against average (0.00); Evan Crawford, 1-0, 17/17, 1.000 SV%, 0.00 GAA; Dylan Gorman, 1-0, 17/17, 1.000 SV%, 0.00 GAA
Richmond Generals (4-0-0-0)
The Generals, like their rivals the Charlotte Rush, went 4-0 and started out with a shutout. They defeated the Tampa Bay Juniors, 3-0, on Dec. 16. Their two-game day of Saturday saw them defeat the Palm Beach Typhoon (5-4 in OT) and the Atlanta MadHatters (7-1). They closed with a 5-2 Southeast Division win over the Nashville Spartans.
Top Scorers: Aidan Urie F (2-4-6), Damian Bridgett F (2-4-6)
Top Goaltenders: Aidan Mirra, 2-0, 38/41, .927 SV%, 1.50 GAA; Ethan Carlone, 2-0, 68/72 SV%, 1.97 GAA
Carolina Jr. Hurricanes (3-1-0-0)
The Jr. Canes stand as the No. 1 team in the USPHL Elite with 49 points. The Jr. Canes started Saturday with a 2-1 win over the Palm Beach Typhoon, followed by a decisive win against the Columbia Infantry and a 5-1 win against the Atlanta MadHatters. They actually took on the MadHatters one more time on Monday, falling 3-1.
Top Scorers: Brayden Strong F (1-6-7), Nathan Rhodes F (3-4-7), Colby Markham D (1-2-3)
Top Goaltenders: Pavel Matiunin, 2-0, 43/45, .956 SV%, 1.00 GAA
Florida Eels (3-1-0-0)
The Eels defeated the Columbia Infantry to start the showcase, putting together a big win over the Columbia Infantry followed the next day by a much closer victory against the team’s No. 3 points leaders the Potomac Patriots. They defeated the Hampton Roads Whalers, 3-1, on Sunday and closed out with a 5-0 defeat against the No. 2 Charlotte Rush.
Top Scorer: Andrew Ward F (6-3-9), Anderson Libby D (0-3-3)
Top Goaltender: Jake Mork, 1-0, 32/33, .970 SV%, 100 GAA
Potomac Patriots (3-1-0-0)
The Patriots started their showcase run on Friday with a 6-1 win against the Columbia Infantry, and then took a close 4-3 loss to the Florida Eels. they came back with their own close defeat of the Florida Jr. Blades by a 4-3 score and ended with a 4-0 shutout of the Palm Beach Typhoon on Dec. 18.
Top Scorers: Alaidar Aktayev F (2-3-5), Mark Pivec F (1-4-5)
Top Goaltenders: Elik Radovanovic, 1-0, 25/26, .962 SV%, 1.00 GAA; Edward Kaiven, 1-0, 56/60, 933 SV%, 2.00 GAA
Hampton Roads Whalers (2-2-0-0)
The Whalers enjoyed picking up a pair of wins in Estero, Fla., kicking off on Sunday with a clear 7-2 defeat of the Atlanta MadHatters, and then they defeated the Tampa Bay Juniors, 4-3, the very next day. On Sunday, the Florida Eels ended their mini-streak in a 3-1 defeat. Palm Beach won 5-2 over Hampton Roads on the closing day of Monday.
Top Players: Brayden Taylor F (4-3-7), Hudson Hinich D (0-2-2)
Top Goaltenders: Jean Berthaudin, 1-0, 33/36, .917 SV%, 3.00 GAA
In Other Action
All but one team took at least one win at the USPHL Florida College Showcase, certainly an amazing showing of the region’s depth.
The second-year Palm Beach Typhoon picked up three points (1-2-1-0), an improvement by a point from their 2021 performance at the same event last year. They started with a 5-4 OT loss on Dec. 17 to the Richmond Generals. After a loss on Dec. 17 (2-1 vs. the Carolina Jr. Hurricanes) and Dec. 18 (4-0 vs. Potomac Patriots). They finished with a 5-2 win against the Palm Beach Typhoon. Sean Boltin registered a 3-2-5 line to lead the team, while Olivier Dulac went 1-1-1-0 with 129 saves for a .942 save percentage.
The Atlanta MadHatters earned their first Florida showcase win since 2019, defeating the Carolina Jr. Hurricanes, 3-1, in their finale, less than a day after falling to the same Jr. Canes, 5-1. They also took losses to the Hampton Roads Whalers and the Richmond Generals. Colby Sims led the way up front with three points in the three games he played. Remi Hay was in net for the win against the Jr. Canes, stopping 34 of 35 shots for one of the best single game showcase performances.
The Florida Jr. Blades also earned their first Florida showcase victory since 2019, starting with a 6-4 win against the Nashville Spartans. They fell in Game 2 to the Potomac Patriots, 4-3, were shut out by the Charlotte Rush and also fell 4-2 to the Rush. Nate Mongeau put up five goals and an assist for six points.
Even the brand new Nashville Spartans kicked off their Florida showcase history with a win in their first run at the event. The Spartans took losses to the Florida Jr. Blades and Tampa Bay Juniors to start, both on Friday. On Saturday, they turned it around with a 6-2 victory against the Columbia Infantry. The Richmond Generals defeated the Spartans on Sunday. Daniel Kehoe scored four goals and an assist for five points. Carter Chamberlain earned the win in net.
The Tampa Bay Juniors picked up a shutout win 4-0 over the Nashville Spartans in their second game, sandwiched between shutout losses to the Richmond Generals and the Charlotte Rush. They closed with a 4-3 loss on Dec. 18 to the Hampton Roads Whalers. Ethan Curran, Garrett Bagnall, and Ari Blatt.
The Columbia Infantry were unable to record a win. Daniel Stefan led the team with two goals in the four games.