By Ross Forman, 10/13/21, 9:45PM CDT
By Ross Forman
New Trier Green skates into the 2021-2022 season with its familiar No. 1 ranking in the state, anchored on its championship game win earlier this month in the annual 4-day, 20-team Pre-Season Invitational tournament, held at Center Ice of DuPage in Glen Ellyn.
The Trevians defeated Glenbrook South 2-1 in the finals.
“It’s nice to be back to normalcy, for the most part,” said Stevenson head coach Tom Wood, whose team won its first 3 games in the Pre-Season Tournament over Fenwick, Glenbrook North and Waubonsie – outscoring those 3 foes a combined 24-3. The Patriots were ultimately eliminated from the tournament in overtime by the Trevians.
Green reached the finals with an overtime win over co-op PREP.
Glenbrook South advanced to the finals with a 5-0 semifinal win over Providence Catholic.
Glenbrook North is ranked No. 2, followed by Glenbrook South, Saint Viator and Loyola Gold. York is No. 6, followed by PREP, Providence Catholic, Saint Ignatius and Benet Academy to round out the top 10.
“There are no nights off, particularly this year,” said Wood, who brings the Patriots into the 10-team Scholastic Hockey League – with all teams ranked in the season-opening Top 20 rankings.
“Our league is extremely deep this year.”
The Patriots slipped past Saint Viator 3-2 on Sept. 18 in Mount Prospect. Sean Nutley scored twice in a 61-second span of the first period, giving the Lions a 2-0 edge. Stevenson scored the next three goals to grab the W. Dylan Jette scored the game-winner at 7:45 of the third period.
“Key early wins are important for the mental side of the game,” Wood said. “We definitely are optimistic for this season. Our JV team was in final four when (the season) was cancelled in 2020. We’re super talented. Our junior class is very deep. We have strong returning defensemen and a very solid returning starting goalie.
“It’s almost a perfect storm for us.”
Does that mean the Patriots are primed for a return to the United Center? Stevenson skated for its only varsity state championship in 2018.
“I think so,” Wood answered.
“I think we have more depth than anyone, but I don’t know if we have the best players on a line. Every now and then a team just has one really good team. I just think all four of our offensive lines are good. We also have very good depth on defense. And our goaltending is very, very solid.
“Overall, I think this team is more talented than the team that went to the United Center (in 2018), when we had a great goaltender, good offense and a young defense. This year, we’re more balanced.”
Jonathan Adler is starting in goal for Stevenson and Wood said Adler “is as good as anyone.”
The Patriots’ backup goalie is Andrew Smoller.
“We have two talented goalies,” Wood added.
The Stevenson defense is led by Zach Meyers and Will Harlow, both of whom “see the ice well and very skilled offensively,” Wood said.
Nolan Jones is as solid as any defenseman in the state.
Stevenson’s biggest strength is its offense – with depth on all four lines, Wood said. Dylan Jette and Davis Jegers are two of the most dynamic forwards in the state and they are joined on the ice by linemate Ethan O’Gradney. Rafael Biedron, Cam Schneider and Maximo Poretto comprise a lethal line, too.
“Poretto is a great forechecker, Rafi has a great shot and Cam is a good passer,” Wood said. “They’re just a really good line together.”
Stevenson’s third offensive line was the No. 1 line last season on the Stevenson JV team: Alan Wu, James Mendelson and Andrew Lermer.
The fourth line is Brandon Schultz, Spencer Harman and Zach Kulick.
“I feel confident putting our fourth line on the ice against anyone, and that hasn’t always been the case,” Wood said.
Here is the Illinois High School Hockey Top 20 Rankings (as of September 27), as compiled by Ross Forman
1. New Trier Green
2. Glenbrook North
3. Glenbrook South
4. Saint Viator
5. Loyola Gold
8. Providence Catholic
9. Saint Ignatius
10. Benet Academy
11. Naperville North
13. New Trier Blue
16. Lake Forest
19. New Trier White
20. Maine Township
Others to watch: Wheaton West, Hinsdale Central, AWFM, BG/H/
Back to back 7-0 wins were the story of the weekend for GBN as they hosted Medina from Ohio for two games.
Although the scores were the same the games were slightly different.
In the 1st tilt on Saturday, GBN wasted no time and struck early just 30 seconds into the game when Aiden Siegel found Owen Just camped out in front of the Medina net for the 1st goal. 6 minutes later Matt Melnick found a rebound off the stick of Kyle Burke for the 2nd goal. Ryan Rossi would make it 3-0 2 minutes later.
Owen Just and Ryan Rossi would each score again along with Ryan Sandler and Josh Genin to close the scoring.
Drew Karchmar was in goal to earn the shutout.
The second game the Spartan's dominated the 1st period but could only get a late goal by Lev Vaynberg Movchan.
GBN was able to score 3 times in each of the last 2 periods. Michael Dimoff had a 2 goal game along with 1 assist. Josh Genin also had a 3 point night (1 G 2A).
Nate Kasdan earned the shutout with his best save coming on a breakaway midway through the second period.
GBN's power play went 2-6 and for the game GBN had 68 shots on goal.
588 Days. Like all of you, we’ve missed the smell of the rubber mats, the shine of a fresh sheet of ice, and the sound of sticks knocking on the boards. It’s been 588 days since the SHL Network was last on the air, and that streak ends Thursday night. We couldn’t be more excited for the return of the SHL Game of the Week for the 2021/2022 season and in a time where many you may rely on our broadcasts more than ever, we’re looking forward to bringing the highest quality broadcasts to you.
Over the past 4 years, the Network has evolved from simply getting games online to now having HD quality streaming, multiple broadcasters, rink side interviews, replays, graphics, and highlight packages. In year 5 of this great crew, we have even higher sights set on the content we’ll be able to deliver to the great fans of the SHL. We have some exciting events and opportunities on the horizon, more on those in the coming weeks.
This season, more than any before, the SHL Network team knows what it means to be able to see top league games without having to be in the arena. This is a role we’re happy to take on, and continue the great tradition the SHL Game of the Week broadcasts have developed.
Below you’ll find the complete SHL Game of the Week schedule for the 2021/2022 season. As always, we love meeting the fans who follow us most so if you find yourself in the arena please feel come say hi before or after broadcasts.
While times are different, we hope the familiar voices of Max, Taylor, Tyler and more bring you back to that same feeling: Hockey season is back, and so is the SHL Network.
|SHL||Thursday, October 14, 2021||5:50 PM||Stevenson||LAG|
|SHL||Tuesday, October 19, 2021||8:30 PM||Carmel||Barrington|
|SHL||Friday, October 22, 2021||7:20 PM||York||NTG|
|SHL||Thursday, October 28, 2021||5:50 PM||Stevenson||GBN|
|SHL||Wednesday, November 3, 2021||9:10 PM||NTG||GBS|
|SHL||Wednesday, November 10, 2021||7:25 PM||GBN||St. Viator|
|SHL||Saturday, November 13, 2021||6:10 PM||LAG||York|
|SHL||Sunday, November 21, 2021||4:30 PM||LAG||St. Viator|
|SHL||Wednesday, November 24, 2021||6:00 PM||GBN||GBS|
|SHL||Sunday, November 28, 2021||Thanksgiving Championship|
|SHL||Saturday, December 4, 2021||7:45 PM||OPRF||LAG|
|SHL||Wednesday, December 8, 2021||7:25 PM||GBN||LAG|
|SHL||Saturday, December 11, 2021||6:10 PM||LAG||NTG|
|SHL||Wednesday, December 15, 2021||7:25 PM||GBN||NTG|
|SHL||Friday, January 7, 2022||7:20 PM||York||OPRF|
|SHL||Sunday, January 9, 2022||5:30 PM||NTG||LAG|
|SHL||Wednesday, January 20, 2021||7:20 PM||Carmel||St. Viator|
|SHL||Thursday, January 27, 2022||5:50 PM||Stevenson||GBS|
|SHL||Wednesday, February 2, 2022||9:10 PM||NTG||GBN|