Sammy Nelson, Dylan Dean tops among ‘08 WYC skaters

May 11, 2023 | World Hockey Hub

Photo by Frankie James Photography
Photo by Frankie James Photography

Pair of Minnesota natives lead SDP Elite to international tournament title

With 19 and 20 points respectively, Dylan Dean and Sammy Nelson became the highest-scoring duo to take the ice at the 15U World Youth Championships in Philadelphia. It was also the first time that teammates had finished one and two among scoring leaders, with Nelson setting the tournament record of 20 points in nine games. Both were crucial to SDP Elite’s success in the tournament, as one or both of them factored in on 29 of their team’s 54 goals.

Nelson is a proven producer, having been one of the top scorers in the 14U Minnesota High Performance League last fall. The 5-foot-11, 155-pound forward got a chance to show the world what makes him such a dangerous offensive threat at the ‘08 WYC. He opened up the tournament with a hat trick against RSG Selects. That would be the first of eight multi-point performances Nelson put on at the ‘08 WYC. His 20 points in nine games breaks the previous tournament record of 19 held by 2006-born Malcolm Spence

After leading No. 7-ranked Mount St. Charles in scoring this past season, Dean got to showcase his scoring ability on the international stage at the ‘08 WYC. His nine goals and 19 points would have tied the tournament record, if not for the efforts of his SDP Elite teammate. Dean put together seven multi-point performances, none bigger than his two-goal, three-assist game against Czech Republic’s Crazy Hockey. That five-point display was the most by any player in a single game.

Tournament leaders from the ‘08 WYC

While Nelson led all skaters in goals (11) and points (20), a trio of forwards nearly out-did him with their ability to find the back of the net. Teammate Mikey Berchild and RSG Selects’ Ryan Tserlin each scored 10 goals apiece; one shy of Nelson’s mark. In fact, Tserlin accounted for more of his team’s offense than any other individual in the tournament. The 5-foot-7 New Jersey native factored in on 68 percent of RSG’s goals scored. 

Berchild was one of the leading scorers in the country this past season for Shattuck-St. Mary’s. At the ‘08 WYC, he showed he could produce at the international level as well, finishing in the top five among scorers.

Underager Landon Dupont scored six goals and 12 points for Western Canada Prime. Both marks were tops among defensemen in the tournament. The 2009-born defender was second in the U15 Canadian Sports School Hockey League (CSSHL) this past season playing up an age level for Edge School as well. Dupont is quickly emerging as one of the top prospects of the birth year.

‘08 WYC Combine results and measurements

All individuals at the ‘08 World Youth Championships took part in off-ice combine testing. Those exercises included vertical jump, multi-rebound jump, broad jump, 20-meter sprint, fastest sprinter, pro agility, pull-ups and grip strength. Results were provided to each of the participants, with the top 10 performers from each exercise made public below.

Playing for Chill Hockey Club, Spencer Thornborough topped the overall leaderboard with a 1.836 Z-Score. Chase Petrova followed close behind with a 1.720, but after that, no other participant surpassed a 1.50 Z-Score. Thornborough ranked first in vertical jump, multi-rebound jump and pro agility. He also finished in the top three in broad jump and 20-meter sprint. 

The off-ice combine was conducted by The Park Sports Facility, which is run by sports technologist Ryan Smyth. 

Individual award winners from the ’08 WYC

Tournament MVP: Sammy Nelson, SDP Elite

Top Forward: Sammy Nelson, SDP Elite

Best Defenseman: Landon Dupont, WCAN Prime

Top Goalie: Luke Carrithers, SDP Elite

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