Jr. Blues Alumni Report – Nov. 27th, 2019

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues have been a mainstay in the North American Hockey League (NAHL) since 1993, and in that time have helped to move over 350 players onto the NCAA and nearly 150 players onto professional hockey. Today we will look back at the last week of hockey action from the NCAA to Europe in this week’s Alumni Report!

We begin this morning with Dryden McKay. The Downers Grove, Ill has earned WCHA Goaltender of the Week honors for the third time this season. The sophomore at Minnesota State turned away 39/40 shots in the Mavericks weekend sweep of Alaska Anchorage, picking up his third shutout on Saturday. McKay stands 9-1-1 with an NCAA-leading 1.17 GAA and a WCHA-best .951 SV% that ranks No. 3 in the country. McKay has earned nine career weekly honors while at Minnesota State, two rookie of the week honors and seven goaltender of the week honors. 

While our goaltending spotlights have mainly centered around McKay and Ohio State’s Tommy Nappier, it’s important to remember that we have nine alumni goaltenders currently on Division 1 rosters. And this week we want to take a minute to recognize Devin Cooley, who earned NCHC Honorable Mention for Goaltender of the Week after the junior stopped 24/25 shots in his first start this season. Last season the Los Gatos, CA native posted a 11-6-2 record with a 1.85 GAA and .960 SV% in 20 games for the Denver Pioneers. Cooley is joined by fellow alum goalie Michael Corson at Denver, who is also 1-0-0 this year. 

Shifting our attention towards our alumni forwards, we take a look at Sam Saliba as he earned Big Ten First Star of the Week honors. The Michigan State University Captain scored three of the four Spartans’ goals to help secure four of six points against Notre Dame over the weekend. The senior from Lincolnshire, IL is a two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree and has amassed 23 goals and 20 assists in 119 games played at Michigan State. This is Saliba’s first career weekly award.

Moving from Division 1 hockey to Division 3, we first look out East to New York. Nikita Kozyrev, a freshman forward at Buffalo State College, has earned SUNYAC Rookie of the Week honors after posting four points this past weekend. The Tallinn, Estonia native had a goal and two assists in Friday’s upset victory over Geneseo, and then added an assist on Saturday in their win over Brockport. Kozyrev now has 2 goals and 4 assists in 6 games played for the Bengals this season.

Riley Doyon has been on fire to start the season for the Aurora University Spartans and earned NCHA Top Performer honors for his play last week. The Carmel, IN native had a goal and an assist last Tuesday and then recorded a goal and two assists on Saturday night. Doyon currently has 8 goals and 6 assists through 8 games in his sophomore campaign. Last season he posted 7 goals and 5 assists in 27 games. 

Our final spotlight this week is on Matthew Cassidy. Cassidy, a native of Medford, NJ, posted a four point weekend of his own for the Youngstown Phantoms. On Friday he notched an assist before recording two goals and an assist on Saturday night. Cassidy now has 6 goals and 7 assists in 18 games played in the USHL this season.

Alumni Highlights:

*Denotes Season Totals