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Recent U18 AAA Esmark Stars News

Mitchell Signs with Worcester Jr. Railers

By DLG 05/13/2020, 3:15pm EDT

18U GOALTENDER COMMITS TO EHL CLUB

Pittsburgh, PA - The Esmark Stars AAA Hockey Club of the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) are pleased to announce that 18U goaltender Danny Mitchell has signed a Eastern Hockey League (EHL) contract agreement with the Worcester Railers Junior A Hockey Club.

The 18-year old Mars, PA native, who is a senior at Mars Area High School, completed his second stint with the U18 AAA Stars this past season.

During the 2019-2020 season, Mitchell (6'3", 165 lbs.) had an overall record of 20-5-2-2 in 30 overall appearances, with a .912 save percentage and a goals against average (GAA) of 2.20, including one shutout. In nine regular season North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) appearances , Mitchell has a 4-1-0-2 record, with a .911 save percentage, a goals against average (GAA) of 2.21.  In NAPHL Dixon Cup Playoff action, Mitchell was 1-0-0-0 in two appearances. He was also selected to and played in the NAPHL U18 All-Star game.

During the 2018-19 season, Mitchell was undefeated in NAPHL 18U regular season play accumulating a 8-0-0-0 record, including three shutouts in eight games played, with a .909 save percentage and a goals against average (GAA) of 1.88.  In NAPHL Dixon Cup Playoff action, Mitchell went 1-1-0-0 in two appearances. During the 2018-2019 season, Mitchell had an overall record of 22-4-1-0 in 30 overall appearances, with a .920 save percentage and a goals against average (GAA) of 1.97, including five shutouts. 

"Danny played a large role in our squad winning the Mid-American District Championships and earning the district spot in the USA Hockey National Championships the past two season," said Esmark 18U head coach Dave Kosick. "He brings a very professional approach to his play and is determined to succeed."

"Danny was part of an elite goaltending tandem our squad had," Kosick added. "He and his playing partner give us a chance to win every night."

Mitchell is the seventh member of the 2019-2020 Esmark Stars to secure a deal with a Junior A club for next season. Fellow goaltender Connor Strobel and defenseman Dustin Gergerach, tendered with the Johnstown Tomahawks of the NAHL; defenseman Lane Ruffner and forward Alex Walker tendered with the Wichita Falls Warriors of the NAHL; forward Ryder Brophy tendered with the Lone Star Brahmas of the NAHL; and forward Tyler Stewart tendered with the Fairbanks Ice Dogs of the NAHL.

Located in Worcester, Massachusetts, the Railers Junior Hockey Club is in the EHL's New England Conference.

Stars U18 Brophy Recognized by NAPHL

By DLG 05/08/2020, 12:30pm EDT

Named to '19-'20 All-NAPHL 18U Team - High Performance Division - First Team

The North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) has announced that Esmark Stars forward Ryder Brophy has been named to the 2019-2020 All-NAPHL 18U Team - High Performance Division - First Team.

The 17-year old western Pennsylvania native, who is a senior at Franklin Area High School in Franklin, PA, is in his first season with the U18 AAA Stars. Prior to joining the U18 squad, Brophy skated for a pair of seasons with the U16 Esmark Stars.

During the 2019-2020 season, Brophy (6'1", 190 lbs.) tallied 24 points (13 goals, 11 assists), including one power-play and one shorthanded goal, in 16 North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) regular season games and 6 points (5 goals, 1 assist) in five NAPHL Dixon Cup Playoff Games. Brophy was also selected to participate in the 2019-202 NAPHL All-Star game and scored a goal for Team Warroad.

Overall during the 2019-2020  season, Brophy led the Stars in scoring and goals scored, as he recorded 106 points (51 goals, 55 assists), including 10 power-play goals and 2 shorthanded goals, in 63 games played.  He helped lead the AAA 18U Stars to the Mid-American District Championship and a spot as District Champions in the 2020 USA Hockey 18U Tier I National Championships.

During the 2018-19 NAPHL 16U season, he registered 25 points (11 goals, 14 assists), in 20 overall North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) games, including three power play goals. Overall, he recorded 70 points (34 goals, 36 assists), including six power-play goals and one shorthanded goal in 53 games.

During the 2017-18 NAPHL season, Brophy registered 9 points (4 goals, 5 assists), in 21 overall 16U AAA league games. He also helped guide Esmark to the Tier I Mid-American District Championship at 16U and a spot at the USA Hockey 16U Tier I National Championships. 

Brophy has signed a North American Hockey League (NAHL) tender agreement with the Lone Star (TX) Brahmas for the 2020-2021 season.

"Ryder certainly demonstrated that he was among the top midget-aged players in the nation this past season," said Esmark 18U head coach Dave Kosick. "And recognition by the NAPHL for his play is another feather in his cap."

Consideration and selection to the All-NAPHL 18U Team - High Performance Division Team was based on player performance in all NAPHL games throughout the 2019-20 season.

NAPHL Announces 2019-20 Academic Honor Roll

By DLG 05/03/2020, 8:30am EDT

Esmark Players Acknowledged for Academic Excellence

The North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) has announced its 2019-2020 NAPHL Honor Roll, recognizing academic excellence by its student-athletes.

To qualify for the NAPHL Honor Roll, student-athletes must have achieved certain academic standards during the 2019-20 school year ... including a minimum 3.5 GPA.

The following Esmark Stars players were recognized for their work in the classroom:

U15 - Zach Hixon, Tristan Lloyd, Liam McClaine, Logan Scanlon, Sebastian Vogt, and Chase Williams

U16 - Nathan Dickey, Hunter Fairman, Logan Marnik, Grant Parshall and Ethan Zupanc

U18 - Ryder Brophy, Dominic Dezort, Dustin Geregach, Trent Gray, Jon Michaels, Danny Mitchell, Brayden Morgan, Jerome Oliver, Gio Palombo, Edward Pazo, Lane Ruffner, Connor Strobel, and Alex Walker

"I am incredibly proud of these young men," said Esmark General Manager Dave Kosick. "We celebrate these student-athletes for their ability to attain academic excellence, while meeting the extraordinary demands placed upon them as elite athletes.

Celebrating its 11th anniversary season in 2019-20, the NAPHL has established itself as one of the premier grounds for development and exposure for elite amateur hockey players. The success of teams on the National stage, as well as, the success of NAPHL players at the next levels of hockey, is further proof that the NAPHL is redefining exposure and has elevated itself to one of the premier training grounds for development and opportunity.

"We salute the NAPHL for celebrating and honoring their players academic accomplishments," Kosick added.

The NAPHL continues to enjoy record-breaking success in terms of advancement in recent seasons, highlighted by the large amount of advancement of players to the North American Hockey League (NAHL). For the upcoming 2020-21 season, 48 players from the NAPHL have been tendered by NAHL Clubs to date. And during the past two years, over 120 NAPHL players have signed an NAHL tender or been drafted into the NAHL.

A remarkable total, given that no other USA Hockey Midget Tier I league has had more players play in the NAHL over the course of the past three seasons than the NAPHL.

The NAPHL is operated by the NAHL's experienced staff and provides an organized and competitive experience guaranteed to benefit all of the participating student-athletes.

Sanctioned by USA Hockey, the NAPHL is designed to maximize the exposure of its Midget and Bantam participants through the NAHL's high-profile recruiting events which attract hundreds of college, junior and professional scouts.