Underage 2008-born forward could lead the way for 15U squad at Nashville

Based out of the Twin Cities of Minnesota, the TC Selects will come to the World Selects Trophy in Nashville with a heavy contingent from Minneapolis and St. Paul metropolitan area. Nearly half the roster will have roots from ‘The Land of 10,000 Lakes’ while the other half stems from places like Colorado, New York, Connecticut, Michigan and Tennessee.

When the puck drops on May 11th, it will be the first time this group of players will share the ice. Coach Dan Johnson said that presents some unique challenges for the team when they arrive in the Music City.

“There are a handful of the Minnesota kids that have played with my groups for a few years now,” he said. “[But] we haven’t played together as a team so it will be important that we gel quickly and become a team fast.”

It’s possible that even as an underage 2008-born player, forward Cole Bumgarner could prove to be a standout performer at the 15U tournament in two weeks. While it’s rare for an underager to play up an age group at this particular tournament, the ones that have done so have shined brightly. Most recently, names like 2004-born players Shane Wright and Matthew Savoie were standouts at the ‘03 tournament in 2018, while 2005-born Connor Bedard played up the following year. Wright and Savoie are now considered top-10 picks in the upcoming NHL Draft while Bedard is a candidate for the first-overall selection in 2023.

Bumgarner is 6-foot-1 and 178 pounds, and played varsity hockey this winter as a 13-year-old. He has four goals and 18 points in 26 games. He should get significant help from fellow forwards Matvey Stremiakov and Peyton Chase. Stremiakov has great skill and is a threat with the puck on his stick while Chase is a big body who plays with an edge.

6-foot-5 defenseman Mace’o Phillips will be hard to overlook. Not only does he have a great frame, Phillips is a tremendous athlete who possesses great skill with room to grow. Him and Gentry Academy D-man Jacob Guille will anchor the back end for TC Selects. 

Logan Nowlin and Oliver Scriver are a strong goaltending tandem from Benilde-St. Margaret’s. They will backstop TC Selects with a combination of athleticism, technical skills and size.

This will be the program’s debut in the World Selects tournament series. TC Selects is a strong spring-summer program out of Minnesota that regularly competes in top showcases. However, it has yet to compete in a World Selects event… until now.

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