PHILADELPHIA – Team LeClair defeated Team Howe, 6-4, here tonight in the fifth annual CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Casey Mittelstadt (Eden Prairie, Minn./Eden Prairie High School) netted two goals for Team Howe to earn Player of the Game honors.
"It was a lot of fun the kids had a lot of energy," said John LeClair (St. Albans, Vt.), head coach of Team LeClair. "They're a talented bunch that played hard and it was a fun game to be a part of."
"I was encouraged by the ability, talent and drive of all these kids," said Mark Howe (Detroit, Mich.), head coach of Team Howe. "It's a great honor to be a part of this event, meet these kids, and see them go off to have great careers in the NHL and with USA Hockey."
Story continues after the jump
Grant Mismash (Edina, Minn./U.S. National Under-18 Team) converted on a wrist shot to stake Team LeClair a 1-0 lead just 1:43 into the game.
Team Howe evened the score less than three minutes later as Mittelstadt collected a feed from Kailer Yamamoto (Spokane, Wash./Spokane Chiefs) and netted a backhand shot at 4:14 of the first period.
Team LeClair regained a 2-1 lead just :50 after Mittelstadt’s tally when Nate Knoepke’s (Farmington, Minn./U.S. National Under-18 Team) wrist shot from the top of the left circle found the back of the net.
Sasha Chmelevski (Northville, Mich./Ottawa 67’s) gave Team LeClair a brief two-goal lead 1:19 into the second period before Team Howe’s Jason Robertson (Northville, Mich./Kingston Frontenacs) buried a rebound 1:29 later to make the score 3-2.
Mittelstadt tied the game, 3-3, with just :17 remaining in the middle frame when he tapped home a loose puck at the right post.
Team LeClair reclaimed a two-goal lead when Vanya Lodnia (Novi, Mich./Erie Otters) scored on a wrist shot from the left faceoff dot 1:35 into the final period. Logan Hutsko (North Caldwell, N.J./U.S. National Under-18 Team) batted a rebound out of midair at 6:54 of the frame to give Team LeClair a 5-3 advantage.
Team Howe’s Logan Cockerill (Brighton, Mich./U.S. National Under-18 Team) scored on the rush to make it 5-4 with 7:48 remaining, but Brannon McManus (Newport Beach, Calif./Omaha Lancers) sealed the victory for Team LeClair with an insurance marker in the final minutes of play.
Team Howe’s Adam Scheel (Lakewood, Ohio/U.S. National Under-18 Team) started the game and finished with four saves while Keith Petruzzelli (Wilbraham, Mass./Muskegon Lumberjacks) stopped 11 of 14 shots in relief. Jake Oettinger (Lakeville, Minn./Boston University) started for Team LeClair and made 12 saves before Cayden Primeau (Voorhees, N.J./Lincoln Stars) came in midway through the second period and stopped 17 of 19 shots to secure the win.
NOTES: For full game statistics, click here … Players selected to compete in the CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game were chosen by USA Hockey in conjunction with NHL Central Scouting … Thirty-five players are on the 2016-17 NHL Central Scouting Futures List, which highlights players that have potential to be selected in the first three rounds of the draft … To date, 102 players who have participated in the CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects have gone on to be selected in the NHL Entry Draft, including 25 first-round selections.