SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Shattuck-St. Mary’s has an unmatched legacy of success at the 18U level. With the Minnesota prep school’s 16U team winning its second straight Tier I title this weekend at the Toyota-USA Hockey National Championships in San Jose, that pedigree is seemingly expanding.
The school’s hockey director, Tom Ward, made the 16U squad’s expectations clear prior to their arrival to the Bay Area.
“We’re out here to play hockey, and we’re out here to win,” Ward said. “The weather is nice, and it’s better than Minnesota, but it’s not a vacation. We haven’t taken in the sights, and we don’t want to.”
Despite the program’s success, Ward said the team is able to focus on the task at hand.
“I don’t think our reputation for winning is a distraction,” he said. “We’ve worked really hard to build a great team and keep it that way.”
Ward remains confident in his formula for winning, no matter how high the level of competition can be at national tournaments.
“There are other good teams out there, and we can get beat at any time if we don’t play our way,” he said.
Road to the Title Game
Shattuck advanced to the title game following a dominant 4-0 victory over the Colorado Thunderbirds in the semifinals. The Sabres’ penalty kill was five for five in the game.
When asked if there was any player that stood out for the 16U side on the road to the championship game, Ward noted goaltender Jack Robbel, who made 28 saves in the semifinal win and was a crucial part of that impressive penalty killing effort.
Shattuck sealed the championship with a 2-1 win over Victory Honda of Michigan.
Player Spotlight: Nolan Moyle
Nolan Moyle proved to be the key player for Victory Honda, with his nine points (three goals, six assists) leading the tournament.
Moyle’s biggest performance came in the 6-2 quarterfinal win against fellow Michigan team Detroit Honeybaked, when he had two goals and two assists.
Moyle also assisted one of the most dramatic goals of the tournament in the team’s semifinal victory against the Yale Bulldogs. After being down 2-0 in the first period, Victory Honda came back to tie the game 2-2 and send it into overtime.
In the extra period, Moyle’s assist to teammate Joshua Wildauer punched Victory Honda’s ticket to a title game. Wildauer also had an assist in the game.
Hometown San Jose Jr. Sharks Fall Short of Second Round
Although they were sleeping in the comfort of their own beds, the San Jose Jr. Sharks fell short of the second round after finishing 1-2 in pool play.
The Sharks lost their opened 7-0 to Victory Honda, the eventual runners-up, and lost their final pool-play game 5-0 against Team Wisconsin.
San Jose’s lone win came against a strong North Jersey Avalanche team.
The Sharks had a two-goal lead in the second period, yet the Avalanche came back to tie the game in the third. However, two third-period goals sealed the 4-2 win.
Jake Landers had a goal and an assist for the Sharks.
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.