Atlantic Youth Hockey League


Strong AYHL Presence in NCAA Field

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INDIANAPOLIS, IND. – The NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Committee selected the 16 teams that will be participating in the 2015 NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Championship, which will begin on March 27th.

The Atlantic Youth Hockey League was well represented among the teams that made the Frozen Four, qualifying either with an automatic birth or by receiving an at-large births, with 26 alumni spread out among eight of the competing teams that will vie for a national championship.

Boston College: Sophomore forward Matthew Gaudreau (’94 birth year/Carney’s Point, N.J.), the brother of ‘Johnny Hockey’, John Gaudreau, played Squirt through Bantam Major with the Philadelphia Little Flyers and spent two midget seasons with Team Comcast. In his two bantam seasons, Gaudreau averaged nearly a point and a half per game and continued his offensive output with a point per game at the midget level. Gaudreau then spent two seasons with the Omaha Lancers (USHL) before joining B.C. for the 2013-14 season.

Senior forward Dan Linell (’92 birth year/Great Neck, N.Y.) played his entire AYHL with the Long Island Gulls. Linell averaged a point per game at the midget level, advancing to the New York Bobcats, before finishing at Choate Rosemary Hall. Linell has dressed in at least twenty-five games in his four seasons at B.C.

New Jersey Devils Youth left wing Peter McMullen (’93 birth year/Livingston, N.J.) dressed for ten games for Boston College this season, doubling his total from the two previous seasons. McMullen spent five seasons with the Devils (Bantam Minor through Midget 18U), while also playing for the Delbarton School. McMullen then spent two seasons in the BCHL with Vernon and Langley before joining B.C.

Boston University: Defenseman Brandon Fortunato (’96 birth year/Albertson, N.Y.) spent seven seasons in the AYHL, six coming with the Long Island Gulls (Squirt Minor through Bantam Major) and one with the Long Island Royals (Midget 16U National). After his time on the island, Fortunato was a late addition to the US NTDP program where he played over 200 games for Team USA. Fortunato saw action in 37 games in his freshman season, scoring 17 points (1G 16A) without committing a single penalty.

Forward J.J. Piccinich (’96 birth year/Englewood, N.J.) joined Boston after an outstanding 2013-14 season that saw the forward average a point per game for the Youngstown Phantoms (USHL), dress in 1 game for the US NTDP and get drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs. Piccinich bounced between the Long Island Gulls and the North Jersey Avalanche in his time in the AYHL, spending two seasons with the Gulls and five with the Avalanche. Piccinich was selected made Youngstown from the Avalanche midget program after he scored just under two points per game in 2011-12.

Harvard University: Freshman Joseph Caffrey (’95 birth year/Ramsey, N.J.) spent five seasons in the AYHL with the North Jersey Avalanche and the New York Saints. Caffrey’s best statistical season was in 2011-12 when he scored 41 points (19G 22A) in 22 games at the Midget 16U National level. Caffrey then spent two seasons at Choate Rosemary Hall before appearing in ten games for Harvard.

Harvard’s captain, junior Kyle Criscuolo (’92 birth year/Southampton, N.J.) played five seasons in the AYHL with Team Comcast and the Mercer Chiefs. He averaged two points per game the Midget 16U American level before averaging two and a half points at the National level. Criscuolo then prepped at Choate Rosemary Hall before joining the Sioux City Musketeers (USHL).

Sophomore forward Luke Esposito (’93 birth year/Greenwich, Conn.) played six seasons in the AYHL, all with the Mercer Chiefs. Esposito then moved on to the Brunswick School, where he served as Captain for the 2011-12 season. Esposito then averaged over a point per game in the BCHL before reporting to Harvard.

Defenseman Patrick McNally (’91 birth year/Glen Head, N.Y.) spent time in the AYHL with the Long Island Gulls and in the MJHL. His best statistical season was his second season the MJHL, where the defenseman had 54 points in 41 regular season contests. McNally then moved on to Milton Academy, serving as an Alternate Captain for Milton in the 2010-11 season. The senior was a plus-17 this season in his twenty games for Harvard.

Defenseman Wiley Sherman (’95 birth year/Greenwich, Conn.) played his Bantam Major season in the AYHL, dressing for 28 games. Sherman then spent four seasons at the Hotchkiss School, serving as team captain in his fourth season. Sherman dressed in 36 games as freshman, picking up three assists.

Providence College: Sophomore defenseman Kyle McKenzie (’91 birth year/Dallas, Tx.) spent five seasons in the AYHL. McKenzie played with the Philadelphia Little Flyers (Pee Wee Major – Bantam Major), the Philadelphia Junior Flyers (Midget 16U National) and Team Comcast (Midget 18U). McKenzie made his way to the Dubuque Fighting Saints (USHL) before reporting to Providence, where has played in 74 games over the past two seasons.

Longtime Long Island Gull Thomas Parisi (’93 birth year/Commack, N.Y.) spent his entire youth career with the Gulls, from Pee Wee through Midget. Parisi moved on to the AJHL and then dressed for ten games with the US NTDP in the 2011-12 season. Over his three-year career at Providence, Parisi has dressed for 102 games with 36 points (9G 27A) and is a +31 for his career.

Quinnipiac University: Senior defenseman Justin Agosta (’90 birth year/East Meadow, N.Y.) played in the AYHL with the Long Island Royals for two seasons (2004-06) before spending one season in the MJHL. The blueliner then spent a prep year at the Berkshire School before spending one season with the Indiana Ice (USHL). After spending three seasons at the University of New Hampshire, where the East Meadow native played 116 games, Agosta scored 22 points (3G 19A) in 38 games for Quinnipiac.

Sophomore Sam Anas (’93 birth year/Potomac, Md.) has been an offensive force for Quinnipiac averaging over a point per game (82 points in 77 games) in his two-year career. Anas spent time with both Team Maryland and the Washington Little Capitals and in best offensive season, Anas scored 41 points in just 19 Midget 18U games with Washington. Anas then moved on to spend two seasons with the Youngtown Phantoms (USHL) where the Potomac resident averaged a point per game in his final season with the Phantoms.

Longtime New Jersey Junior Titans players Tim and Connor Clifton (Matawan, N.J.) both saw action in over thirty games for the Bobcats. The Matawan natives spent their AYHL careers with the Titans, with Tim playing from Pee Wee Major through Midget 16U before spending one season in the MJHL and Connor playing his Squirt Major through Bantam Minor seasons in the red and white.

University of Miami (Ohio): Goaltender Anthony Jacaruso (’91 birth year/Hillsborough, N.J.) spent time with the Mercer Chiefs (Midget 16) and the Central Penn Panthers (Midget 16 American).

University of Nebraska-Omaha: Senior forward Kyle Mountain (’90 birth year/Bryn Mawr, Pa.) his Bantam Major year (2004-05) with the Philadelphia Junior Flyers with 17 points (8G 9A) in 23 games before moving on. Mountain spent three seasons with the University of Vermont before dressing for 17 games with UNO.

Yale University: Yale leads the way with eight AMHL alumni on their current roster.

John Baiocco (’95 birth year/Harding, N.J.) was a five-year player for the North Jersey Avalanche seasons (Squirt Minor through Bantam Minor) before taking to the ice for New Jersey high school powerhouse Delbarton, where the power forward saw action in over one hundred games, scoring 51 goals. Baiocco then spent one season with the Fargo Force and the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the USHL.

Defenseman turned forward Matthew Beattie (’92 birth year/Whitehouse Station, N.J.) spent time with the New Jersey Rockets in the AYHL and the New Jersey Renegades and New Jersey Junior Titans in the MJHL. After spending his prep season at Phillips Exeter Academy, Beattie was selected by the Vancouver Canucks in the 2012 draft. Wrapping up his third season in New Haven, Beattie has 8 points (4G 4A) in 53 games.

Frank DiChiara (’93 birth year/Ronkonkoma, N.Y.) was an offensive dynamo in second season in the MJHL and has continued to do so at every level thereafter. After five AYHL seasons with the Royals, DiChiara returned to the Royals for his second season in the MJHL and scored 102 points in just 34 games and added 20 more points in the playoffs. DiChiara then spent a season in Saint Louis (NAHL) and one in Dubuque where he won the Clark Cup, averaging just under a point per game in the regular season and just over a point per game in the playoffs. DiChiara nearly doubled his offensive output in his second season with Yale.

Longtime Long Island Gulls (AYHL) forward Ryan Hitchcock (’96 birth year/Manhasset, N.Y.) was just selected as the Ivy League Rookie of the Year after tying for the team-lead in assists (12) and helping Yale to 17 regular season wins. After leading the New Jersey Rockets to the Keegan Cup Championship in his one season in the MJHL and winning the league’s Most Valuable Player Award, Hitchcock played for the US NTDP, skating in almost 200 games for Team USA.

Senior defenseman Matt Killian (’92 birth year/Basking Ridge, N.J.) saw action in over 110 games in his four seasons for the Bulldogs, averaging six points per season. Killian spent six seasons with the New Jersey Colonials (Pee Wee Major through Midget 18U) and one with the New Jersey Devils Youth (Midget 18U). Killian’s best season was at Midget 16U National with 24 points (8G 16A) in 29 AYHL games. Killian also dressed for 16 games with the US NTDP in the 2010-11 season.

Junior defenseman Rob O’Gara (’93 birth year/Massapequa, N.Y.) spent six seasons in the AYHL, including three with the Long Island Royals before moving on to Milton Academy, where he served as team captain in his second year. After a slow start to his career at Yale, O’Gara scored 21 points (6G 15A) in 32 games with a +17 rating on the ice, tying for the team lead in points.

Defenseman Dan O’Keefe (’94 birth year/Wall, N.J.) spent four AYHL seasons with the New Jersey Junior Titans before joining their MJHL program for two seasons. O’Keefe then returned to the AYHL with Team Comcast for one season (2011-12) before spending one year with Surrey (BCHL). O’Keefe was a steady, puck-moving defenseman, who was one of the youngest players during his time in the MJHL, where he put up five goals and seven assists in his second season.

Forward Charles Orzetti (’92 birth year/Ridgewood, N.J.) was a member of the North Jersey Avalanche, where he put up 45 points (28G 17A) in the 2005-06 season and the New Jersey Colonials, where he put up 15 points in 14 Midget 18U games. In addition to his time on the ice with the Colonials, Orzetti played with New Jersey powerhouse Delbarton. Orzetti closed his junior career with Surrey (BCHL) before joining Yale in 2012-13.

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