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Join Date: Nov 2006
US Mens Division 1 Notebook
(CP) - Nearly 35 per cent of players competing at the top men's level of U.S. college hockey are Canadian, according to statistics included in Inside College Hockey's annual geographic breakdown of where talent comes from.
According to INCH, 544 NCAA Division I hockey players, or 34.41 per cent, hail from Canada. Ontario is the top supplier with 193 Division I players and 12.21 per cent of the total. Only Minnesota produces more homegrown talent in NCAA Division I hockey with 214 players.
All 10 Canadian provinces are represented as well as one territory. The ECAC Hockey League boasts the most Canadian players with 156, while the five-team College Hockey America (CHA) is the only conference with more Canadians (69) than Americans (67).
Twenty-three of the top-50 scorers in college hockey are Canadian, including four in the top 10. Niagara sophomore forward Les Reaney of Ceylon, Sask., ranks fourth overall with 32 points while November's Division I player of the month, Sacred Heart senior forward Pierre-Luc O'Brien of Nicolet, Que., is tied for sixth with 30 points.
Nebraska-Omaha senior forward Alex Nikiforuk of Kelwona, B.C., and Alaska junior forward Kyle Greentree of Victoria rank eighth and 10th respectively with 28 points for Nikiforuk and 27 for Greentree. Notre Dame senior goaltender David Brown of Stoney Creek, Ont., ranks fourth in both save percentage (.933) and goals-against average (1.64). The Pittsburgh Penguins draft pick also leads the NCAA with 13 wins and is second in minutes played with 1027:22 minutes between the pipes.
Atlantic Hockey boasts 91 Canadian players from seven different provinces. Mercyhurst sophomore forward Mike Floyd of Stratford, P.E.I., is the sole Prince Edward Island native in Division I. Ontario-born players constitute 48.35 per cent of all Canadian players in Atlantic Hockey as well as 16 per cent of the conference.
Sacred Heart senior forward Pierre-Luc O'Brien of Nicolet, Que., ranks second in the conference with 30 points in 19 games. Bear Trapp of Regina, a sophomore forward and teammate of O'Brien, is fourth with 25 points. R.I.T. junior Brent Patry of Ottawa is in a tie for second-place among defenceman in scoring with 15 points. Canisius freshman defenceman Carl Hudson of Smooth Rock Falls, Ont., has 13 points, good for fourth in overall defenceman scoring in the conference and first among all rookie defencemen. R.I.T. freshman goaltender Louis Menard of Chicoutimi, Que., leads the conference with a 2.44 goals-against average a .714 winning percentage while teammate Jocelyn Guimond, a junior goaltender from Ottawa, ranks first in save percentage at .929.
Central Collegiate Hockey Association
Twenty of the 48 players in the CCHA who hail from British Columbia and Alberta play for the Alaska Nanooks, who are based in Fairbanks.
"When you look at where the hockey players are, the closest thing to Alaska is British Columbia and Alberta," said Alaska head coach Tavis MacMillan, a native of Milk River, Alta., whose uncle John MacMillan skated on two Stanley Cup championship teams with Toronto "The other junior leagues, even in the United States, are a lot further away so geographically it makes sense to us and we've had a lot of success in those areas with student athletes."
Thirty-nine of the 97 Canadian players, or 40.21 per cent, in the CCHA are Ontarians. Of those 97 players, 16 are property of NHL teams
Five of the top 10 scorers in the CCHA are Canadian. Nebraska-Omaha senior forward Alex Nikiforuk of Kelowna, B.C., ranks fourth in the conference in overall scoring with 28 points, including 15 on the power play. Alaska's Kyle Greentree of Victoria is sixth in overall conference scoring with 26 points while ranking first in power-play goals with eight. Northern Michigan junior forward Mike Santorelli of Burnaby, B.C., and Miami junior forward Ryan Jones of Chatham, Ont., are tied for eighth with 24 points apiece while Michigan sophomore forward and world junior team member Andrew Cogliano of Woodbridge, Ont., is 10th 23 points.
College Hockey America
Despite being the only conference to have more Canadian players than Americans, the CHA has the fewest provinces represented with only five. Residents of Ontario comprise 35.48 per cent of Canadians in the league as well as 26.47 per cent of the entire conference.
Niagara sophomore forward Les Reaney of Ceylon, Sask., leads the conference in overall scoring with 32 points, in assists with 20, and in power-play points with 16. Reaney's teammate, senior forward Sean Bentivoglio of Thorold, Ont., is third in the conference with 26 points. Of Bentivoglio's 10 goals, two have come while short-handed while two more were game-winners. Tyler Gotto of Calgary, a freshman defenceman for Niagara, leads all rookie defencemen in the conference with nine points. Bemidji State junior goaltender Matt Climie of Leduc, Alta., leads the CHA in goals-against average, 2.54, save percentage, .917, and winning percentage, .708.
ECAC Hockey League
The ECACHL boasts the most Canadians of any league, 156, and attracts them from the widest showing of provinces with nine represented. Ontario's 47 players is first among provinces and states while Alberta's 34 players rank third behind New York's 36. The ECACHL also has four players from Nova Scotia, more than any other conference in collegiate hockey as well as the only two players in the NCAA from New Brunswick.
Although Hockey East has the lowest number of Canadian players with 53, the conference is tied with the WCHA for the second-highest number of provinces represented with eight. Ontario makes up 37.74 per cent of the Canadians in Hockey East while Newfoundland's three players is the most out of any conference for the province.
Western Collegiate Hockey Association
The WCHA is the only conference in which the majority of Canadian players don't come from Ontario. Alberta's 29 players make up 37.18 per cent of Canadians in the WCHA and 11.37 per cent of total players in the league. British Columbia is second with 23 players while Manitoba is third with eight. Ontario comes in at fourth with seven players. The WCHA is also home to Whitehorse native Jared Tuton, a freshman forward for Alaska-Anchorage and the only collegiate player from the Yukon.
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