The 2018 MHL Draft at the Kings Mutual Century Center in Berwick, Nova Scotia saw the selection of 120 players – including previously announced territorial picks – that represent the future contributors to the league.
The St. Stephen Aces made the podium their home for an extended time to start the afternoon, making the first three selections. First, the chose Saint John Vitos right winger Zachary Alchorn. Alchorn, who will turn 17 this month, recorded 47 points in 34 regular season games, good for third overall in the MB/PEI Major Midget AAA league, and nine points in eight playoff games with the Vitos last season.
Next up, the Aces selected defenseman Jack Morris. Turning 17 this October, Morris recorded exactly a point per game (36 points in 36 games) on the Cape Breton West Islanders (NS Midget AAA) blueline during the regular season. He then registered 12 points in 10 playoff games.
The third overall selection was East Coast Blizzard forward Ethan Stuckless. The 17 year old recorded 42 points in 32 games with the Newfoundland Midget AAA Blizzard this season while ensuring that the Aces literally went all over the map with their first three selections, taking players from New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, respectively.
The fourth overall selection went to the Pictou County Weeks Crushers, who took Antigonish’s Sean Stewart. Stewart, who will turn 17 in October, posted 22 games in 33 regular season games with the Cape Breton West Islanders last year.
The Grand Falls Rapids stepped up to the podium for the first time in the recently relocated organization’s history and chose Moncton Flyers forward Yannick Bastarache with the fifth overall pick. The 16 year old posted 27 points in 31 games with the Midget AAA club this past regular season.
The hometown Valley Wildcats stepped up to the podium next and, with the sixth selection, chose Cole Harbour Wolf Pack center Liam Kidney. The 17 year old Enfield, NS native registered 38 points in 34 games with the Eastern Canadian Midget AAA Champion host Wolf Pack club while also being named a First Team All-Star.
The local flavor continued with the seventh overall pick as the Truro Bearcats took defenseman Damian Hartt of the NS Midget AAA League’s Valley Wildcats. The 17 year old from Ellershouse, NS recorded 32 points and 107 penalty minutes in 35 regular season games with the Wildcats.
The defending MHL regular season and playoff champion Edmundston Blizzard made their first of two first round selections at number eight when they took Halifax Macs forward Aaron Brown. The 17 year old from Timberlea, NS recorded 48 points in 36 points for the Macs while also being named to the NS Major Midget AAA league’s First All-Star Team.
Picking ninth, the South Shore Lumberjacks selected Dartmouth Steele Subaru forward Riley Spears. The 17 year old made an impression with his first season with Dartmouth, recording 27 points in 36 games with the NS Major Midget AAA club in 2017-18.
The tenth selection this afternoon was Marc Richard. The Kensington Wild forward was the first selection of the Summerside Western Capitals. Richard, who will turn 16 in December, put up an impressive 29 points in 35 regular season games as a 15 year old with the Wild.
The defending Eastlink South Division regular season and playoff champion Yarmouth Mariners took to the podium with the 11th overall selection and use it to acquire 17 year old forward Sam Gillis. Gillis was a Second Team All-Star in the NS Major Midget AAA league this year after accumulating 50 points in 36 regular season games with the Cape Breton Tradesmen.
The Edmundston Blizzard closed out round one by making forward Cole Stewart of the NB/PEI Major Midget AAA Moncton Flyers their second choice of the day. The 17 year old Stewart produced 28 points in just 15 regular season games as well as 15 points in eight playoff games for the league champion Flyers last season.
The Campbellton Tigers stepped to the podium for the first time on the afternoon with the third selection in round two and used that pick to take Charlottetown Pride defenseman Logan Kelly-Murphy. The 17 year old from Vernon River, PEI recorded six points and 70 penalty minutes in 31 regular season games with the NB/PEI Major Midget AAA squad.
The Miramichi Timberwolves used their first pick of the day, the fifth selection in the second round, to acquire Dartmouth Steele Subaru forward Will Robinson. 17 year old Robinson, posted 21 points in 35 regular season games as well as five points in 14 playoff matches for the NS Major Midget AAA playoff champion Steele Subaru last year.
The last team to make a selection on the day, the Amherst Ramblers, took center Joe Bouchard as a lieu pick during the first Territorial round. The 17 year old from the Halifax Macs put 43 points on the board in 36 regular season games with the Macs last season as well as 10 points in 11 postseason clashes.
The MHL congratulates all of the players chosen in today’s draft.
Will MacLaren – themhl.ca