When players leave the Valley Jr Warriors, they take their unique experience with them and more often than not shine on a new stage. Three former Warriors standouts have done just that as they are making headlines with their outstanding play.
Chris Kreider, Bryan Albert and Eric Petterson are putting their years of training and play in the blue and gold jersey to good use as they are excelling on the collegiate scene.
Here is a summary of highlights of their great performances.
Catching Up With Chris Kreider
After serving as an integral member of Ken Cleary’s VJW U-18 squad during the 2008-09 season, Kreider enjoyed a whirlwind year. He led his Phillips Andover Academy with 56 points in 26 games and was then selected as the No. 19 pick at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft by the New York Rangers. Kreider – according to the final Central Scouting Rankings – entered the 2009 NHL Entry Draft as the highest ranked high school player and the 14th overall among North American skaters.
Kreider’s commitment to Boston College brought much excitement to the Eagles fans as he was just the 12th Eagle in the last 24 years – and ninth in the last 14 years – to have been selected in the first round of the NHL Entry Draft. He joins 2009 Hockey Hall of Fame elect Brian Leetch (ninth, 1986), Craig Janney (13th, 1986), Bill Guerin (fifth, 1989), Marty Reasoner (14th, 1996), Brooks Orpik (18th, 2000), Krys Kolanos (19th, 2000), Chuck Kobasew (14th, 2001), Brian Boyle (26th, 2003), Patrick Eaves (29th, 2003), Cory Scheider (26th, 2004) and Nick Petrecki (28th, 2007)as Boston College first-round draftees.
As a member of the program, Kreider has lived up to his billing! The 6-foot-2-inch, 206-pound forward from Boxford has played in 10 collegiate games this season and has five points - two goals and three assists.
This past week, Kreider was one of 29 players named to the preliminary roster for the 2010 U.S. National Junior Team that will participate in a three-day pre-tournament training camp Dec. 17-19 in Grand Forks, North Dakota. The 2010 U.S. National Junior Team will compete at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, Dec. 26, 2009 - Jan. 5, 2010, in Saskatoon and Regina, Sask.
The training camp will be highlighted with an exhibition game against North Dakota on Dec. 22. Following the camp, a reduced roster will play the Czech Republic on Dec. 22 in Regina, Sask., in Team USA's final exhibition game. The final 2010 U.S. National Junior Team roster will be selected following Team USA's final exhibition game against the Czech Republic.
Catching Up With Bryan Albert Two years after capping off a strong career with the Valley Jr Warriors Junior A team, Bryan Albert has emerged as one of the top players not only at UMass Boston but in the Eastern College Athletic Conference East. This past week, Albert, a native of Redlands, California, was named the ECAC East Player of the Week after racking up six points on three goals and three assists in a weekend series for the Beacons. Albert has enjoyed a sensational second campaign with UMass Boston, leading the team with four goals in four games to rank 14th in the nation in goals per game and second in ECAC East in total goals.
The sophomore netted a pair of goals, including a power play score to lead UMass Boston to an 8-3 win at Framingham State College on November 24 and registered a career-high four points with the game-winning goal and a personal-best three assists vs. Stonehill College on November 28 in the first round of the Manchester Police Athletic League/Stovepipe Tournament. The Beacons also played in an exhibition contest the following day and defeated Penn State University's club team to capture its second straight P.A.L./Stovepipe Tournament Championship with a 7-4 victory.
As the team's leading goal scorer, the forward has been quite the playmaker as well with four assists to rank 5th in the league and second on the team, while ranking 12th in the country with 2.0 points per game and second among ECAC East players with eight total points. Much like he did while playing for the Valley Jr Warriors, Albert has excelled on the power play with six points on a pair of goals and four assists to lead ECAC East, while his goal total with the extra skater puts him fourth among the league's leaders.
A graduate of Redlands High School, he has played in 28 career games for the Beacons and tallied eight goals to go with 13 assists for 21 points. The weekly honor isn't the first he's received from the ECAC. He was also selected as the ECAC East Rookie of the Week for the week of December 8-14 last season.
UMass Boston is currently 3-1-0 on the season for its best start since 1996-97 when it also owned a 3-1-0 mark after four contests. The Beacons are second in the nation with 5.50 goals per game and their current three-game winning streak is the fifth-longest among NCAA Division III schools.
Catching Up With Eric Peterson In his first season with Utica College, Eric Peterson has become a key player for Gary Heenan’s squad as he was named the school’s Player of the Week after netting his seventh point of the year in a thrilling 2-1 win against Potsdam. Earlier in that game, Peterson served up a key assist in the second period to help his team avoid a weekend sweep against its ECAC West foe.
Peterson has played in all nine games for Utica and has amassed four goals and three assists. He is currently playing on the team’s top line and is a key cog for the power-play unit.
The Pioneers are currently in third place in the conference with a 2-1-1 record, and a record of 4-3-2 overall. As a team, the Pioneers currently rank eighth nationally scoring on 30.3% of their power play opportunities. Also, through five games this year UC ranks No. 1 nationally in home attendance averaging 3,072 fans per contest at The Aud.