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Scouting Colin Shea; Tracking Alumni

A weekend free of UMass hockey games afforded me the opportunity to get out and try and see some of the incoming recruits playing in the area, something I enjoying doing whenever feasible.  So yesterday without a reason to truck all the way out to Amherst I only went halfway instead to watch the EJHL’s Green Mountain Glades take on Colin Shea and the Junior Bruins in Marlborough.

So here are my thoughts from watching Shea play:

He’s a very smooth skater, he even may have a little speed.  The entire game he was very poised and relaxed, even at the end when things got chippy.  He played smart on defense, putting himself in good position.  His greatest skill is his poke check which stymied the Glades all game long.   

Offensively he was solid.  He made good outlet passes and moved the puck well both on offense and on the power play.  He seems to have a solid wrister but he only used it a couple times.  His slapshot needs work however both in terms of strength and accuracy.  He seemed to like to jump up into the play when possible and didn’t hesitate to skate down with or even lead the rush (similar to what we see from Justin Braun).  He finished the game with two assists, one on a slapshot that was stopped and put back in by a teammate and the other I think was him cycling it down for the goal.  I believe he was on the ice for four of the five goals (EJHL doesn’t have +/- on box scores), played on the first pairing and was on the first PP and PK units.

Now to the elephant in the room, he is very skinny.  He certainly has good height, but I think the 170-175lbs published is accurate.  The weight and his slapshot are the two things that pose the greatest challenges to him having success in Hockey East.  His poke check is excellent but there are times when you have to pinch someone up along the boards and he’ll have a tough time doing so currently until he bulks up.  I wanted to offer to take him out for a couple prime ribs and perhaps a pizza or two after the game but I don’t think the NCAA would’ve appreciated such a gesture.

Some other players who stood out in the game:
–  Joe Pendenza.  Lowell bound forward who had a good two-way game.
–  Justin Breton.  Had two goals in the game, looked to be the main scorer.  Heading to Bentley.
–  Dan Federico.  Shea’s defensive partner.  Unsigned.  Son of Hockey East linesman?
–  Joey Yeadon.  Only a junior.  Unsigned.  High energy, was all over the ice.
–  Matt Esposito.  Unsigned.  Looked to be Glades best player.

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I’ve been able to add an Alumni page to Fear The Triangle hoping it will be a central place to keep track of where all the former Minutemen are playing or coaching nowadays and see their up to date stats.  I think I have almost everyone covered, mostly thanks to HockeyDB.  I’ll do my best to keep it up to date as guys change teams, etc.  There are a few players that I think are probably still playing somewhere but I couldn’t track them down, namely Scott Crowder, Kelly Sickavish, and most surprisingly Stephen Werner.  If anyone has any information on these three or any other UMass alums who are still in pro hockey in some way, shape, or form, please email me or use the comment function on the page itself.

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New England Prep hockey begins today with an exhibition tournament out at the site of UMass’ latest win, Yale’s Ingalls arena.  Cushing and Conor Sheary will be in action.

John Parker assisted on three of Indiana’s four goals last night as the Ice beat Chicago 4-0 in USHL play.  Parker was named the game’s #2 star and had a +3 on the game.

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For those that missed it, could’ve-been Minuteman John Carlson made his NHL debut for Washington on Friday.  He became the youngest Cap to do so.  Recaps say he played pretty well and even hit a post.

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