2018 Draft Recap
The 2018 USHL Draft came to a close yesterday evening with the conclusion of the Phase II portion of the draft. Things got started Monday night with Phase 1 where all picks were born in the year 2002. Like many other USHL teams, the Musketeers got working on next year’s squad early by signing defenseman Anthony Kehrer to a tender for the 2018-19 season. The Musketeers officially signed the offensive defenseman to the tender last week which meant the team forfeited their first-round pick in Phase 1 of the draft. Head Coach Luke Strand, General Manager Mark LeRose, and Director of Scouting Andy Johnson saw a special player that would be available in round one and decided to make some moves to acquire another first-round pick in Phase 1.
Below you will find a full list of all the Musketeer draft picks starting with their first-round selection in Phase 1. The number in parenthesis indicates the overall placement of the pick.
Blake Biondi-Round 1, Pick 8 (8th overall)
Christian Jimenez-Round 2, Pick 4 (20th overall)
Aidan Campbell-Round 3, Pick 4 (38th overall)
Tim Stutzle-Round 4, Pick 4 (52nd overall)
Carter Loney-Roud 5, pick 4 (68th overall)
Noah Tussey-Round 6, pick 4 (84th overall)
Jon Bell-Round 7, pick 4 (100th overall)
Joel Maatta-Round 8, pick 4 (116th overall)
Landon Parker-Round 9, pick 4 (132nd overall)
Mason Langenbrunner-Round 10, pick 4 (148th overall)
PHASE I RECAP
The Musketeers started out the two-day draft process on a high note with the selection of Blake Biondi. Sioux City made a trade the day of the draft to acquire a pick in the first round after they signed Anthony Kehrer to a tender. The trade paid off as Director of Scouting Andy Johnson and GM Mark LeRose got the man they were hoping for in Blake Biondi. The rest of the draft continued to play out very positively for Sioux City. NeutralZone.com gave the Musketeers a B+ draft grade for their efforts citing the Kehrer signing as well as the Stutzle, Tussey, and Biondi picks as some of Sioux City’s best.
Of course, drafting for the future can be a difficult task with many of the Phase I players a year or two away from being USHL ready, but Johnson, LeRose, and Head Coach Luke Strand were very pleased with the results at the end of Phase I.
“There is a lot more projection in this draft right along with that right now ability. You have to be able to look at players through a telescope and a microscope, so that definitely adds a challenge to this phase of the draft” said Head Coach Luke Strand. Johnson reiterated those feelings stating “It is a bit more difficult because of the projection aspect, but at the same time it is the first crack we get at these kids, so we are getting the best of the best in the country. We want to take advantage of that and get the best players we can in the system.”
Johnson made it clear that this was an especially successful draft for the Musketeers “We are thrilled with the Phase I results. Most teams say they are happy with their draft, but to be able to get seven Americans in our top 30, the best goalie in the country at his age and two high-end Europeans is more than we could have expected.”
Of course, much of the success of the draft comes down to the hard work of the scouting staff. GM Mark LeRose thought the entire Musketeer staff hit it out of the park in Phase I “I am very pleased with the hard work our staff and scouts put into this draft, especially Director of scouting Andy Johnson. He put in a lot of work all season, and it paid off tonight.”
After a successful day one, the Musketeer staff quickly turned their attention to Phase II.
Zachary Plucinski-Round 2, pick 12 (28th overall)
Quinn Olson-Round 3, pick 11 (43rd overall)
Aidan Harper-Round 5, pick 1 (66th overall)
Tim Gould-Round 5, pick 4 (69th overall)
Brock Baker-Round 6, pick 12 (95th overall)
Jake Sibell-Round 6, pick 16 (99th overall)
Michael Posma-Round 7, pick 3 (103rd overall)
Matthew Stienburg-Round 10, pick 4 (152nd overall)
Andranik Armstrong-Round 12, pick 4 (184th overall)
Viljami Nieminen-Round 13, pick 4 (200th overall)
Mac Wiseman-Round 14, pick 4 (184th overall)
David Farrance-Round 15, pick 4 (232nd overall)
Ryan Taylor-Round 16, pick 4 (248th overall)
Jacob Herter-Round 17, pick 4 (264th overall)
Jake Flynn-Round 18, pick 4 (280th overall)
Dawson Klein-Round 19, pick 4 (296th overall)
Zachary Nazzarett-Round 20, pick 4 (312th overall)
Ryan Stevens -Round 21, pick 4 (328th overall)
Justin Schutz-Round 22, pick 4 (344th overall)
PHASE II RECAP
Sioux City continued their strong showing from day one with a strong Phase II draft where one of the main focuses balance. Johnson highlighted this when asked about his overall thoughts on the results of the draft.
“I thought it went phenomenal, exactly like we wanted it. We got high-end pieces at forward, defense and in net. We filled future needs as well as needs for next year. Overall, we got a lot better today.”
One area Johnson seemed to be very pleased with is the additions Sioux City made at the goaltender position. The starting role next season will belong to returner Ben Kraws, who was extremely impressive in his starts this season, but it never hurts to have depth.
“Adding two goaltenders and adding to our goaltender depth was huge, we wanted to focus on guys who could help us now and down the road, and I think we were really successful there today.
LeRose echoed his sentiments from day one giving all the credit to Johnson and his staff for their work all season long.
Of course, only time will tell how truly successful these drafts were for the Musketeers, but with a good portion of players from last year’s team returning next season Musketeers, fans should be very excited about what the future of Musketeer hockey has in store.