Pittsburgh, PA - The Esmark Stars AAA Hockey Club of the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) are pleased to announce that 18U defenseman Zachary Stoner has signed a North American Hockey League (NAHL) tender agreement with the Johnstown (PA) Tomahawks of the NAHL’s East Division.
The 18-year old Leesburg, VA native, who is a graduate of Heritage High School, in Leesburg, is in his first season with the U18 AAA Stars. Prior to joining the U18 squad, Stoner previously skated for the Washington Little Capitals.
"Zachary is a quality defenseman with good body size who exceeds in both the offensive and defensive sides of the game," Esmark Stars U18 head coach Dave Kosick said. "He has attracted attention from multiple teams ... including both NAHL and USHL teams."
“Having the opportunity to work in our system and to work closely with Yuri Krivokhija (Esmark’s 18U assistant coach) has allowed Zach to step out and showcase his skills,” Kosick added.
To date, during the 2020-2021 season, Stoner (6'2", 180lbs.) has tallied 13 points (3 goals, 10 assists), including one power-play goal and two game-winning goals, in 16 North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) regular season games. And 22 points (5 goals, 17 assists), including two power-play goals and a team leading +24 plus/minus rating, in 34 regular season games.
Stoner was also selected to participate in the 2020-2021 NAPHL All-Star game for Team Matthews.
"Zachary is the next defenseman in line who will continue to build upon the strong relationship between Johnstown and Esmark," Kosick said. “We have been able to provide Johnstown with several quality blue-liners of the past few seasons … including current Tomahawks defenseman Ethan Webb and Dustin Geregach.”
Stoner is the third Esmark player to sign a tender with an NAHL club thus far during the 2020-2021 season, joining Nathan Dickey, goaltender, Kenai River Brown Bears and Ryder Brophy, forward, Lone Star Brahmas.
Pittsburgh, PA - The Esmark Stars AAA Hockey Club of the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) are pleased to announce that 18U goaltender Nathan Dickey has signed a North American Hockey League (NAHL) tender agreement with the Kenai River Brown Bears.
The 17-year old Butler, PA native, who is a senior at Butler High School, is in his sixth season skating with the Stars AAA Hockey program. He joined the Stars and skated for their Pee Wee major club (12U) during the 2015-16 season, and subsequently skated for their Bantam Minor, Bantam Major, U15 Midget Minor and U16 Midget Minor teams prior to joining the U18 Midget Major AAA Stars for the 2020-2021 season.
To date, Dickey (6'1", 170 lbs.) has recorded a 5-0-0-0 record in 5 overall appearances, with a .936 save percentage and a goals against average (GAA) of 1.40 during the 2020-21 season. In three North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) appearances to date season, Stobel has a 3-0-0-0 record, with a .957 save percentage and a goals against average (GAA) of 1.00.
Dickey missed most of October for his Esmark club as he attended Kenai River's 2020 main camp as an invitee.
During the 2019-20 NAPHL 16U season, Dickey had an overall record of 6-4-0-1, with a .875 save percentage, and a goals against average (GAA) of 2.33, including three shutouts, in 12 regular season and Dixon Cup appearances.
During the 2018-19 NAPHL 15U season, Dickey had an overall record of 5-6-0-1, with a .899 save percentage, and a goals against average (GAA) of 2.75, including two shutouts, in 12 regular season and Dixon Cup appearances.
"Nathan has certainly demonstrated to the Brown Bear's staff that he is among the premier midget major goaltenders in the nation," said Esmark 18U head coach Dave Kosick. "His skill set and work ethic certainly set him aside."
"It was never a case of would he tender, rather it was where would he tender," Kosick added. "And Kevin ... (Murdock, head coach at Kenai River) ... landed himself an elite goaltender."
Kenai River is in the NAHL's Midwest Division and is based out of Soldotna, Alaska.
Pittsburgh, PA - The Esmark Stars AAA Hockey Club of the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) are pleased to announce that 18U forward Edward Pazo has signed a North American Hockey League (NAHL) tender agreement with the Danbury (CT) Jr. Hat Tricks.
A native of Jefferson Hills, PA, the 17-year old junior at Thomas Jefferson High School has skated for the Stars for a pair of seasons.
During the 2019-20 season, Pazo (6'3", 200 lbs.) registered 17 points (6 goals, 11 assists) in 16 regular season NAPHL games and 7 points (2 goals, 5 assists) in five NAPHL Dixon Cup Playoff games for the U18 AAA Stars. Overall, Pazo registered 92 points (33 goals, 59 assists), including 13 power play goals and a +57 plus/minus rating on the season in 62 games played, helping lead Esmark’s Midget Major squad 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 season, Pazo registered 16 points (6 goals, 6 assists), including 3 power play goals, in 15 NAPHL regular season games and 7 points (1 goal, 6 assist) in four NAPHL Dixon Cup Playoff games for the Stars U16 AAA squad. Overall, Pazo registered 57 points (25 goals, 32 assists), including 3 power play goals, in 53 games played for Esmark.
"With Ed's size and production, quite a few teams had expressed interest in securing his junior rights," said Esmark 18U head coach Dave Kosick. "His shot velocity combined with his net front presence and ability to find scoring chances will certainly give him an opportunity to flourish at the next level."
Pazo is the seventh player from the 2019-2020 U18 AAA squad to sign a tender with an NAHL club and the eighth overall Esmark Stars U18 player to sign a Junior A tender for the upcoming 2020-2021 season. He joins teammates Alex Walker, forward, Wichita Falls Warriors; Lane Ruffner, defenseman, Wichita Falls Warriors; Ryder Brophy, forward, Lone Star Brahmas; Connor Strobel, goaltender, Johnston Tomahawks; Dustin Geregach, defenseman, Johnston Tomahawks; and Tyler Stewart, forward, Fairbanks Ice Dogs, who all had previously signed NAHL tenders for this upcoming season, as well as Danny Mitchell, goaltender, who signed with the Worcester Jr. Railers, of the Eastern Hockey League (EHL).
The Jr. Hat Tricks skated as the Wilkes Barre / Scranton, PA, Knights last season but have relocated to Danbury beginning with the 2020-2021 season. The team, which will remain in the NAHL's Eastern Division, will play out of the Danbury Arena. Former NAHL standout Billy McCreary is the Jr. Hat Tricks head coach.
In addition to the Jr. Hat Tricks, the NAHL East Division also includes: Jamestown Rebels (Jamestown, NY), Johnstown Tomahawks (Johnstown, PA), Maine Nordiques (Lewiston, ME), Maryland Black Bears (Odenton, MD), New Jersey Titans (Middletown, NJ), and Northeast Generals (Attleboro, MA).