Login:  
    
    
Blackwell Prepares for 2012 National Junior Evaluation Camp
blackwell_250.jpg 
While many players are taking time off this summer, one former VJW star is hard at work preparing for a challenge of national proportions!

Colin Blackwell
, who proudly wore his VJW jersey from Mites through Midgets U17, was one of 46 players who were invited to take part in its National Junior Evaluation Camp this August in Lake Placid, New York. Blackwell will be battling for a spot on the U.S. National Junior Team that will take part in the 2013 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, Dec. 26, 2012-Jan. 5, 2013, in Ufa, Russia.

“When I got the call, I couldn’t have been happier,” said Blackwell, who is coming off a sensational freshman campaign at Harvard University. “You get to go to camp and have this great opportunity in front of you to wear the USA on your chest… It’s going to be an interesting experience and I couldn’t be more happy, honored, humbled and excited to prove myself.”

Throughout this past season at Harvard, Blackwell has been honing his skills in front of NHL and USA Hockey scouts. He traveled to Cambridge following an impressive high school career at St. John’s Prep (Danvers) where he was a three-year most valuable player and two-year captain. He was also named the 2010-11 Massachusetts High School Hockey Coaches Association Robbie Ftorek Player of the Year and was the 2010-11 ESPN Boston's "Mr. Hockey" Player of the Year. Despite his success as a youth player, Blackwell still had to get used to the challenges of collegiate hockey.

“When I got there, everyone was bigger, faster and stronger,” said Blackwell. “I was an 18 year old kid and I was playing against guys who were 25 years old. It was an age difference that I had never experienced before. It took a few practices and a game or two to get used to it, but I eventually became more comfortable with the speed of the game.”

In November, Blackwell scored his first collegiate goal against Colgate, netted the tying and winning goals in a comeback against New Hampshire and earned ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Week honors. He continued to be an offensive weapon for Harvard Head Coach Ted Donato down the stretch as Blackwell registered four assists in 6-1 defeat of Cornell in the ECAC semifinals (March 16), becoming the first Harvard player since 2002 to record four helpers in a game.

“One of the things that I learned during my first few practices and games was the importance of winning the one-on-one battles,” said Blackwell, who – while at SJP - set a single-season school scoring record with 66 points (33 goals, 33 assists) as a senior and graduated as the fourth-leading
all-time scorer. “We needed to be focused on winning those battles against the person next to you. If you could win those battles you could help your team go further.”

Blackwell also managed to balance his schoolwork with Division I hockey as was evidenced by his being an ECAC Hockey All-Academic selection.

“I leave my room at 3 and I don’t get back until 8 and then you have your opportunity to start your work,” said Blackwell. “You have to be organized and time management was a key trait to have.”

This summer, Blackwell has been focusing his efforts on preparing for the next challenge that lies ahead in Lake Placid. He has been making near daily treks to Cambridge to work with the Harvard strength training coaches and also getting ice time in here on the North Shore.

He will – later this month – participate in the San Jose Sharks Prospect Camp. He was drafted by the San Jose Sharks in the seventh round of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. Along the way, he also has found time to visit his old coaches at the Haverhill Valley Forum and work at the Valley Jr Warriors Summer Camp in August.

“Whenever I am home I try to show up and say hello,” said Blackwell. “I played with the Warriors all of my life. If it wasn’t for the support that my coaches gave me, I wouldn’t be where I am now.”

Blackwell credits the coaching staff – including Fred Devereaux, Peter King, Andy Heinze and Mike Holubowich – for helping him grow over the years through competitive league and tournament play and the weekly team and skills practices.

“I went through a time when everyone else was going through a growth spurt,” said Blackwell. “Everyone was getting bigger and faster, but the Warrior coaches stayed with me and worked me hard and believed in me. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. The weekly skills sessions with Coach Devereaux that I participated in from an early age were important. I still use those same drills and lessons to this day.”

And Blackwell’s advice for those youngsters coming up through the program?

“I have been in the shoes of the younger players,” said Blackwell. “If I can do it, they can do it. The Warriors have the coaching staff and the facilities to allow those young players to do the same thing.”

Click here for a complete schedule of play at the 2012 USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp.
INDEX
Good As Gold - By Mike Lynch
It's OK Ray - By Mike Lynch
Jul 8, 12
Blackwell Prepares for 2012 National Junior Evaluation Camp
Sam Kurker & Brendan Collier Selected in 2012 Entry Draft
Not Your Average Tree Stump - By Mike Lynch
2012 Warrior Classic To Feature Elite Prospects Teams
Chris Kreider Shines On, Breaks Records With the Rangers
VJW Players Perform Well to Finish 2nd at Merrimack Valley Cup
2012 Eastern Junior Hockey League Spring Showcase
VJW Summer Discounts at Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning
14 VJW Players Selected For 2012 USA Hockey Development Camp
The Crown Was Too Heavy - By Mike Lynch
VJW Prepares For Inaugural Season in the Elite Prospects League
Chris Kreider Nets Game Winner in Game 6 For the Rangers
VJW Junior A Players Announce College Plans
2012-13 VJW Midget Coaches Announced
Chris Kreider Signs Deal With New York Rangers
Purple Passion - By Mike Lynch
2012 USA Hockey National Championships - Summary
Warrior Shawn Moody Selected to NH U-17 Festival Team
Tryout Reminder - Junior & Midget Dates and Times Are Posted
Three VJW Teams Prepare for 2012 National Championships
Warriors Take Home Three EJHL End-of-Season Awards
VJW '00 Elites Capture 2012 NEHL Championship Title
March Gladness - By Mike Lynch
VJW '99 Elites & '99 Selects Heading to USA Hockey Nationals
VJW Junior A Season Comes to an End in EJHL Quarterfinals
VJW Welcomes Stop It Goaltending for 2012-13 Season
Valentine's Day - By Mike Lynch
VJW Netminder Fabian Sivnert Accepts Scholarship to Bemidji State
VJW Junior A Team Advances to EJHL Quarterfinals... Again!
Save the Date - 2012 VJW Tournament Dates Released
Yes You Can - By Mike Lynch
Warriors Announce the Introduction of FULL SEASON U-16 Team
Former VJW Players Battle For Boston's Hockey Bragging Rights
VJW Teams Support Great Causes on the Frog Pond in Boston
Former VJW Star Sam Kurker Continues Dream Year
VJW Junior A Defenseman Conor Riley Heading to Maine
Josh Woody Named EJHL Offensive Player of the Week
VJW '99 Selects Find Time for Hockey & Fun Outside
Warriors Represented in NHL Central Scouting's Midterm Rankings
VJW Accepting Coaches Applications for 2012-2013 Season
VJW Junior A Forward Mark Meads Commits to Bentley University
Scenes From Around Town - VJW Mite Minors
VJW Netminder Sivnert Named EJHL Defensive Player of the Week
Former VJW Star Colin Blackwell Featured in Hometown Paper
Skate On! - By Mike Lynch
North Team Loses, but VJW Players Shine at EJHL All-Star Game
VJW '99 Selects Lead the Winning Charge During MLK Weekend
Four VJW Players Selected for the 2012 EJHL All-Star Game
VJW Teams Compete Well at the 2012 JWK Tournament
VJW '01 Selects Continue to Roll in Holiday Tournament Play
VJW '03 Selects Skate to Victory During the Holiday Break
VJW '00 Elites Face Off in 2K Super Series Tournament
Men of Steele - By Mike Lynch
Six And Counting for the Red Hot VJW Junior A's
VJW '00 Selects Take Time to Give Back to Toys For Tots
Colin Blackwell Feeling Right At Home in Cambridge
VJW Junior As Extend Winning Streak to Four Games
VJW '97 Elite Players Prepare for High School Challenges
Warriors Sweep Glades to Move Into Third in Northern Division
VJW '01 Selects Win Big at Thanksgiving Tournament
Occupy Anti-Hazing - By Mike Lynch
VJW '00 Selects Capture Bronze at 2011 CAN/AM Tournament
VJW Teams Take Home Titles, Impress at Warrior Thanksgiving Tournament
Teams Prepare for 2011 Warrior Thanksgiving Tournament
VJW Teams Come Together For A Great Cause
VJW '97 Elites Win States; Are National Bound Again
Family Affair - By Mike Lynch
VJW Teams Bring Home Gold, Three Bronzes at 2011 CAN/AM Tournament
VJW Junior Squads Perform Well at the 2011 Warrior Classic
2011 Warrior Classic Underway in Haverhill
VJW Mite Minors Enjoy a "Special" Visit
VJW '03 Selects Look Strong Heading Into CAN/AM Tournament
VJW Junior As Split Weekend Series With Apple Core
Barrier Buster - By Mike Lynch
Four VJW Squads Fare Well at 2011 Bauer International Challenge
VJW Junior As Extend Win Streak to Four Games
Three VJW Players Earn New England Hockey League Weekly Honors
Fenway Follies - By Mike Lynch
Trevor Braun Delivers Again; Leads Junior As to Win over Monarchs
Two Big Wins Lift VJW '97 Elites to the No. 2 Spot In the Nation
Warriors Skate to Big 7-5 Victory Over the Jersey Hitmen
Warriors Put A Little Bit of "Pink" In Their Step
VJW 03 Selects Enjoy Hockey Northeast Debut
VJW Teams Impress Early During NEHL Qualifying
VJW Junior A Team Ready For New Challenges
No Light At The End Of This Tunnel - By Mike Lynch
Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning Center Comes to Haverhill
Happy New Year By Mike Lynch
VJW '97 Elites Ready For Another Memorable Season
Defying the Odds: 2011 Warrior National Showcase Is a Hit
Ring the Bell for Keegan - By Mike Lynch
Al Always Gave His All - By Mike Lynch
2011 Warrior August National Showcase Comes to Haverhill in August
Summer of Stanley - By Mike Lynch
Former Warrior Colin Blackwell Selected In 2011 NHL Entry Draft
Welcome Home Stanley! - By Mike Lynch
Come One, Come All to the 2011 VJW Golf Classic
VJW '97 Elites Enjoy Impressive Spring Hockey Festival Performance