Atlantic Youth Hockey League


Five Alumni Selected for USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Release Date : 12/15/2015

OMAHA, Ne. – The United States Hockey League and NHL Central Scouting announced the players selected to play in the 2016 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game. Five Atlantic Youth Hockey League alumni were among the 40 players named to the game, which will take place on January 12, 2016 at Ralston Arena in Omaha, Nebraska, home of the USHL’s Omaha Lancers.

Forwards Ross Colton (Robbinsville, N.J./Vermont), Grant Jozefek (Chester, N.J./Northeastern), Sam Sternschein (Syosset, N.Y./Cornell), defenseman Zachary Berzolla (Howell, N.J./Colorado College) and goaltender Peyton Jones (Langhorne, Pa./Penn State) were selected selected to represent their respective USHL teams in the fourth annual event.

All 40 players selected are eligible for the 2016 NHL Draft, including 27 in their first year of eligibility. In the three-year history of the event, 46 players have gone on to be selected in the NHL Draft. Final rosters will be announced by the USHL at a later date.

Colton spent eight seasons in the AYHL, seven with the Mercer Chiefs and one with the New Jersey Rockets. In 188 AYHL games, the University of Vermont committed forward scored 369 points (208G 161A) before spending a prep season at the Taft School, where Colton continued to show a scoring knack with 43 points (25G 18A) in 24 games.

Colton then advanced to the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders, who selected the Robbinsville, New Jersey native with the 179th overall selection in the 2014 USHL Phase II Entry Draft. Colton is in his second season with Cedar Rapids and is the circuit’s fourth leading scorer with 26 points (12G 14A) in 21 games.

Jozefek, the eighth leading scorer in the USHL (7G 16A in 23 games) spent eight seasons in the AYHL, spread among the Long Island Gulls, the New Jersey Devils Youth, the New Jersey Colonials and the North Jersey Avalanche.

Jozefek has displayed a scoring knack at every level, amassing 383 points (220G 163A) in 207 AYHL regular season games 49 points (11G 38A) in 75 USHL games. The Northeastern-committed forward was the seventh overall selection (by the Muskegon Lumberjacks) in the 2013 USHL Phase I draft and was a 14th round selection of the Plymouth Whalers in the 2013 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection.

A star forward with the Lincoln Stars, Jozefek and Colton are two of the six USHL players averaging over a point-per-game this season (as of December 15).

Sternschein was an eight-year player in the AYHL system, playing seven years with the Gulls and one season with the Avalanche. A two-time participant at the Toyota/USA Hockey National Championships, participating at 16U National with the Gulls and at 18U with the Avalanche. The Cornell-committed forward won a silver medal with the Avalanche earlier this year.

A participant in the Select-15, 16 and 17, along with a participant in the OHL Cup (with the Elite Hockey Group), Sternschein appeared in 158 AYHL regular season games, registering 151 goals with 111 assists.

The 19th overall selection in the 2014 USHL Phase I Draft by the Tri-City Storm, Sternschein was traded to Cedar Rapids, where the forward has four points (2G 2A) in 13 games.

Berzolla is the only alumnus defenseman on the list. The Howell, New Jersey native spent seven seasons with the New Jersey Junior Titans and three with the Devils Youth before Muskegon selected Berzolla with their 12th round selection in the 2014 USHL Draft.

A steady presence on the blueline for the Lumberjacks, Berzolla appeared in 226 AYHL regular season games, scoring 84 points (36G 48A). The Colorado College-committed defenseman also appeared in the Select-15 and 16 festivals along with the OHL Cup.

The Sudbury Wolves selected Berzolla with the 252nd selection in the OHL Priority Selection.

Jones, the owner of the eighth-best goals against average in the USHL, spent seven seasons in the AYHL, five with Team Comcast and one each with the New Jersey Rockets and the Philadelphia Junior Flyers.

Following a strong Midget 18 season with the Flyers, Lincoln selected the Langhorne, Pennsylvania native with the 62nd overall selection in the 2014 Phase I Draft.

Jones saw action in 140 AYHL regular season games, averaging a 90% save percentage during his time in the league.

Now in his second season with Lincoln, Jones, who committed to Penn State University earlier in October, has had a banner year, posting a goals against average of 2.29 with a 92% save percentage.

You can find all of the up-to-date information about the game on the USHL website, by clicking here.

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