A top-5 finish, 47-win season, nine junior draft picks and four players bound for USNTDP
The 2006-born squad earned silver at the USA Hockey National Championships in April, before a large majority of their team found spots with USHL franchises shortly thereafter.
Four of the SSM players will suit up for USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program (USNTDP) next fall, while six others were selected in the USHL Draft on May 2.
They certainly earned their opportunities at the next level, after the 15s finished with a 47-9-4 record and the No. 7 spot on our World Rankings.
They played a full month-plus of hockey without losing a game from mid-September to early November, which got the ball rolling for another successful season for storied program out of Faribault, Minn.
At Nationals, they dropped two games — both to eventual national champion Chicago Mission. Other than that, it was dominating wins over the Minuteman Flames (10-2), the North Jersey Avalanche (6-0), Mount St. Charles (6-2) and the Bishop Kearney Selects (5-2).
Brodie Ziemer led the team in scoring both on the season and at the national tournament. The Carver, Minn., native registered 108 points in 59 games this year, 11 of which came at USA Hockey Arena in the posteason. Kristian Epperson finished just a few points behind him, logging a clean 100 in total.
Jack Galanek posted 81 points on the season, while Ryker Lee had 80 and William Zellers had 79.
The leading scorer from the blue line unit was John Whipple – the Morristown, N.J., native racked up 55 points in 54 games. He also managed to lead the team in the penalty department, as Whipple accumulated 91 penalty minutes over the course of the season.
William Lubimov, a native of Philadelphia, led the way between the pipes, as he appeared in 36 contests and finished with a 2.16 goals-against average and .892 save percentage. His crease partner, Lukas Bergman, played in 30 games, while registering a 2.06 goals-against and .884 save percentage.
So how did the big season set the SSM squad up for their spring selection process in the junior circuit? Four players were invited to the 2022 NTDP Evaluation Camp, and all four were selected for next season’s NTDP Under-17 Team. Epperson, Ziemer, Whipple and defenseman Noah Lapointe will be sporting the Red, White and Blue next fall. If ‘Lapointe’ sounds familiar, it should – Noah is the youngest of former NHL forward Martin Lapointe’s three sons.
The four will be joined by another Shattuck product, as Cole Eiserman, a forward who was bumped up to the Shattuck Prep 18U team this season, also made the NTDP for the upcoming campaign.
Six members of the SSM 15-Only team were then selected by USHL teams in the USHL Phase-I Draft, and we expect many of them to be on their new club’s roster when the puck drops in September. Here is a look at the draftees:
Round 2, No. 18 overall – Green Bay – Will Zellers, forward
Round 2, No. 22 – Madison – Ryker Lee, forward
Round 4, No. 55 – Muskegon – Jack Galanek, forward
Round 6, No. 86 – Lincoln – Tanner Henricks, defenseman
Round 8, No. 107 – Lincoln – Vladimir Bakhtov, forward
Round 10, No. 138 – Green Bay – Jack Brauti, defenseman
Three of the SSM boys were claimed in the OHL Draft, as well:
Round 5, No. 84 overall – Saginaw – Kristian Epperson, forward
Round 6, No. 104 overall – Barrie – Jack Brauti, defenseman
Round 15, No. 302 overall – Hamilton – Noah Lapointe, defenseman
Between the four NTDP selections and the likely USHL players next fall, several SSM 15O players will earn their stripes skating for other teams in ’22-23, proving to be one of the more decorated youth hockey teams from the 2021-22 season. Want more coverage of the top teams in youth hockey? Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube for the latest worldwide news, events, prospect talk and more!
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