The Esmark Stars AAA Hockey program had all three of its midget team in action this past weekend, March 19 - 21, as they traveled across I-70 to Columbus, OH, for the SuperSeries AAA - Columbus Showcase.
The U18 Stars opened round-robin play on Friday with a 1-1 tie against the Nation's #14 ranked Northwood School Prep. John Camp scored the lone Stars goal, on an assist from Michael Felsing, in the first period. A late Northwood power play goal in the third period spoiled the Stars opener and resulted in the 1-1 tie. Nathan Dickey stopped 34 of 35 shots to earn the tie in goal.
On Saturday, the Stars picked up a pair of wins. First, they grabbed a 3-2 win over the Nation's #8 ranked Maine Nordiques. Keith Smilowitz scored twice and Ryder Brophy once to lead the Stars on the offensive end, with Brophy's power play goal coming with a little over a second remaining in regulation play. Liam Varmecky (2A), Adis Ultanbekov (2A), Regan Kallis and Ed Pazo picked up assists. Connor Strobel stopped 41 of 43 shots he faced to collect the win in goal.
Later Saturday evening, the Stars closed round-robin play with a 6-0 shutout win over the Nation's #20 ranked Nichols School Prep. Six different players scored goals as Yahor Ramanau (1G, 1A), Hunter Fairmain, John Camp, Brayden Morgan, Regan Kallis and Ryder Brophy found the back of the net. Ethan Zupanc (2A), Adis Ultanbekov (2A), Justine Mettrick, Cole Mitchell, Shane Miller, Michael Felsing and Ed Pazo added assists. Nathan Dickey stopped all 33 shots he faced to earn the win and shutout in goal.
The Stars finished first in round-robin play and advanced to the #1 vs # 2 game and a rematch against the Maine Nordiques on Sunday. This time the Nordiques would grab a 3-1 win over the Midget Major Stars. John Camp scored the lone Stars goal, on the power play, on assists from Egor Busygin and Liam Varmecky. Connor Strobel would suffer the loss in goal, despite turning aside 38 of 41 shots he would face in goal.
The (2-1-1-0) showing improves the U18 Stars overall record to (42-18-5-0). Next up for the 18U AAA Stars will be a showcase event in Nashville, TN, over the Easter Holiday Weekend, April 2-4.
The U16 Stars closed their 202-21 season with a perfect 4-0-0-0 showing at the Showcase that brought their overall record to (37-17-3-1).
They opened play on Friday, with a 4-1 win over the Syracuse Nationals. Joey Pankowski (1G, 2A), Jacob Meier (1G, 1A), Chase Williams and Nathan Burlando scored for the Stars. Demian Tychenko and Logan Scanlon added assists. Blaise Becker stopped 15 of 16 shots he faced to earn the win in goal.
On Saturday, the Stars grabbed two more wins. First up was a 4-2 win over the Maine Nordiques. Demian Tychenko (1G, 2A), Joey Pankowski (1G, 2A), Aaron Stawiarski, and Bryce Reel scored goals. Tristan Lloyd and Bill Kiray III added assists. Nikita Volski stopped 25 of 27 shots he faced to earn the win in goal.
Later Saturday evening, the Stars would grab a 4-2 win over Team Alaska. Owen Tutich (1G, 1A), Brody Simko (1G, 1A), Logan Scanlon and Tristan Lloyd scored goals. Chase Williams (2A), Liam McClaine, Shane Kozlina and Jacob Meier added assists. And Blaise Becker turned aside 16 of the 18 shots he faced to earn the win in goal.
The Midget Minor Stars closed the event and their 2020-212 season on Sunday with a 3-0 shutout win over Nicholls School Prep. Demian Tychenko (1G, 1A), Joey Pankowski and Chase Williams scored the Stars goals. Ilya Zhdanov also picked up an assist. And Nikita Volski stopped all 17 shots he faced to earn the win and shutout in goal.
The U15 Stars opened round-robin play on Friday with a pair of wins. First they grabbed a 6-0 shutout win over Meijer AAA. Later Friday the Stars return to action with a 6-2 win over the Colorado Rampage.
On Saturday the Stars and the Palmyra Black Knights skated to a 1-1 tie. The U15 Midget Minor Stars closed the event and their 2020-21 season with a 3-1 win over the Jersey Hitmen.
The (3-0-1-0) showing improved the U15 Stars final overall record to (32-23-4-1).