Springfield, Illinois – The path to a professional hockey career can take many stops and, in some cases, a bit longer than expected. But our Alumni have been paving a path for future players since 1993 and this season has been no different. From the NCAA to the AHL and beyond, here is this week’s Alumni Report!
We will open up our Alumni Report in Bowling Green, OH where Senior forward Sam Craggs concluded his NCAA career by registering 2 goals and 1 assist in the Falcons Quarterfinal matchup against Bemidji State. In Game 1 on Friday, the Elmhurst, IL native picked up an assist in their 2-1 victory and then tallied two goals in their 4-2 loss to the Beavers on Saturday. Craggs also set Bowling Green history on Friday when he skated in his 179th career game, a program record. By the time the weekend was over he had skated in games 180 and 181, and finished his career with 30 goals and 34 assists. Craggs played here in Springfield during the 2015-16 season and recorded 17 goals and 11 assists in 47 games before finishing his junior career in the USHL.
From Ohio we will travel to De Pere, WI where Senior blueliner Chase Mickelson recorded 2 assists in the Green Knights loss to Adrian on Saturday. The Rice Lake, WI native assisted on the second and third goals for St. Norbert with the latter being a shorthanded goal. Mickelson and his teammates will now play St. Olaf in the opening round of the NCAA DIII Tournament which gets underway this Saturday. He currently has 1 goal and 6 assists in 21 games this season and has tallied 4 goals and 19 assists in 77 games overall in his tenure at St. Norbert. Mickelson played two seasons here in Springfield from 2016-2018 and appeared in 103 games, scoring 9 goals and adding 31 assists. He is teammates with fellow Alumni in Brendan Aird, Max Brainin, and Ben Schmidling.
Our next stop takes us to Kalamazoo, MI to check in on how veteran forward Matheson Iacopelli has been doing for the Wings this season in the ECHL. After setting career highs in goals and assists in 2019-20, Iacopelli has not had the same success this season. However, he proved to be the deciding force for Kalamazoo this past week as he recorded 2 goals and 1 assist in three games, including the game-winning goal on Sunday. The Woodhaven, MI native now has 9 goals and 8 assists in 41 games this season and has totaled 40 goals and 27 assists in 113 ECHL appearances overall. Iacopelli played in Springfield during the 2012-13 season, scoring 3 goals and 1 assist in 4 games before going on to play for Muskegon in the USHL and at Western Michigan. He is in his 4th full professional season.
And our final spotlight takes us to Davos, Switzerland where we take another look at how veteran netminder Sandro Aeschlimann is doing for HC Davos in the National League (NL). Aeschlimann, who missed a couple of weeks in February while representing Switzerland at the 2022 Winter Olympics, went 3-0-0 this past week including a 24-save shutout. He now has a record of 20-10-0 with a 1.80 GAA, .941 SV%, and 6 shutouts in 32 appearances. The Zaziwil, SUI native leads the NL in save percentage and shutouts, and has the 2nd best goals against average and 5th most wins. Sandro played here in Springfield during the 2013-14 season (Pictured Above) where he appeared in 10 games before finishing his time in North America at Elmira College in 2015-16.
Here are the rest of our Alumni who excelled on the ice this past week!
Devin Cooley 1-0-0 Milwaukee Admirals AHL
Stefanos Lekkas 2-0-0 Maine Mariners ECHL
Brennan Blaszczak 1 G, 2 A Pensacola Ice Flyers SPHL
Ricards Bernhards 1 G Kiruna AIF HockeyEttan
Kevin Klima 1 G HK Hradec Kralove Czechia
Kelly Klima 2 G HK Hradec Kralove Czechia
Les Lancaster 2 A Ilves Liiga
Martin Liljekvist 1 G Kalica HC HockeyEttan
Brandon Puricelli 3 G, 1 A Lake Superior State NCAA
Dryden McKay 2-0-0 Minnesota State-Mankato NCAA
Bradley Marek 1 G Ferris State NCAA
Ethan Stewart 1 A Ferris State NCAA
Coale Norris 1 A Bowling Green NCAA
Caden Villegas 1 G Union College NCAA
Ryan Leibold 1 G Holy Cross NCAA
Kyler Yeo 1 G Augsburg NCAA DIII
Andrew McGlynn 1 A UW-Eau Claire NCAA DIII
Cade Groton 2 G Hamilton NCAA DIII