WAKEFIELD, Mass. - Twelve players currently competing in Hockey East have been selected to the preliminary roster of the 2017 U.S. National Junior Team, including an NCAA-leading seven players from Boston University and three from Boston College. In total, 22 of the 27 players named to the roster have NCAA experience, including goaltenders Jake Oettinger (Lakeville, Minn./Boston University), Joe Woll (Dardenne Prairie, Mo./Boston College), defensemen Casey Fitzgerald (North Reading, Mass./Boston College), Chad Krys (Ridgefield, Conn./Boston University), Charlie McAvoy (Long Beach, N.Y./Boston University), and forwards Kieffer Bellows (Edina, Minn./Boston University), Erik Foley (Mansfield, Mass./Providence), Jordan Greenway (Canton, N.Y./Boston University), Patrick Harper (New Canaan, Conn./Boston University), Clayton Keller (Swansea, Ill./Boston University) and Tage Thompson (Orange, Conn./UConn), Colin White (Hanover, Mass./Boston College).
Additionally, Boston College Associate Head Coach Greg Brown and Providence Assistant Coach Kris Mayotte will serve on the Team USA coaching staff, while Boston University's Dante Fabbro (New Westminster, B.C.) was named to Canada's selection camp while Boston College's Julius Mattila (Tampere, Finland) and Jesper Mattila (Tampere, Finland) and Providence's Kasper Bjorkqvist (Espoo, Finland) were chosen to Finland's World Junior camp and UConn's Adam Huska (Zvolen, Slovakia) will represent Slovakia at their training camp.
Oettinger is in the midst of his first year as a Terrier, sitting second among all conference goaltenders in overall goals against average (1.92) and save percentage (.930). He has collected two weekly honors from the conference to date, as he was named Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week on October 24 and most recently was named Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week on December 5. He has started all but two games for Boston University this year, backstopping his squad to a 8-4-2 overall record and a top-five national ranking.
Woll, the second Hockey East rookie netminder to be named to the preliminary roster, has been between the pipes for the Eagles in 15 of their 18 games and ranks first in conference play in goals against average (1.70) and second in save percentage (.936). Woll is undefeated in Hockey East contests in his career, owning a 6-0-1 record in seven outings. He was chosen as the first pick (62nd overall) of the third round by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2016 NHL Draft.
Fitzgerald, a second-year defenseman for Boston College, leads all Hockey East defensemen in overall goals with five strikes on the year, including two game-winning tallies. His two decisive goals is also tops among league de - fensemen. In total, he's racked up 13 points (5g, 8a) on the year. Last season, he was named to the Pro Ambitions All-Rookie Team after recording 27 points on four goals and 23 assists as he helped Boston College to a Frozen Four appearance. He was selected 86th overall by the Buffalo Sabres in the third round of the 2016 NHL Draft.
Krys is one of three Hockey East skaters that appeared in last year's 2016 World Junior Championship, helping Team USA to a bronze medal in Helsinki, Finland. In his first year as a Terrier, he has appeared in 14 games and collected two points (1g, 1a), both of which came in a 7-0 win over Sacred Heart on October 21. Krys is a Chicago Blackhawks prospect selected 45th overall in the second round of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft.
McAvoy, selected 14th overall in the first round by the Boston Bruins in the 2016 NHL Draft, has begun his 2016-17 sophomore campaign with 12 points (1g, 11a) through 14 games. McAvoy was also part of the 2016 bronze medal- winning U.S. National Junior Team. McAvoy ranked 17 overall in that tournament in plus-minus rating, earning a plus-five rating in seven games. He was also named to the 2016 Pro Ambitions All-Rookie Team in his freshman campaign, racking up 25 points on three goals and 22 assists.
Bellows has scored four goals and dished out one helper through the fir st 14 games of his NCAA career. During his time with USA Hockey's National Team Development Program, Bellows led the NTDP in goals (50) and game-winning strikes (9) in 2015-16. Bellows was also named the 2014-15 USHL Rookie of the Year and selected to the All-USHL Third Team after helping the Sioux Falls Stampede to the Clark Cup championship. He was the 19th overall pick of the 2016 NHL Draft, taken by the New York Islanders in the first round.
Foley is the lone representative from the Providence College Friars as the sophomore forward leads his team in points with 14 (6g, 8a) through 14 games. The 2015 Winnipeg Jets pick (third round, 78th overall) racked up 19 points (7g, 12a) in his freshman season. He was also named to the USHL All-Rookie Team in 2015.
Greenway compiled 26 points (5g, 21a) in 38 games as a freshman last year with Boston University, and currently sits second on the Terriers with 13 points through 13 games in 2016-17 on six goals and seven assists. He was twice named Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week (Feb. 8, Feb. 15) and twice rode a point streak of at least five games. In 2015, he was drafted by the Minnesota Wild 50th overall in the second round of the NHL Draft.
Harper currently leads all Boston University skaters in points with 1 7 (6g, 11a) through his first 14 games. In his very first game in a BU uniform, he racked up seven points (5g, 2a) in an exhibition contest and followed that up with a three-goal, one-assist performance in a second preseason outing. He opened his NCAA career with a seven- game point streak (4g, 7a) and has registered at least one point in 10 of his 14 games. The Terriers are 4-0-0 when he scores a goal and 7-2-1 when he records a point, but just 1-2-1 when he is held off the score sheet.
Keller, the seventh overall pick of the Arizona Coyotes in 2016, has amassed nine points on five goals and four assists, despite having missed the last seven games with injury. In the seven games in which he has dressed, Keller has recorded a point in five of them, including chipping in on two game-winners. He has twice been named Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week (Oct. 3, Nov. 7).
Thompson currently leads the UConn Huskies with 18 points (10g, 8a) through 18 games played this season, including five power-play tallies. In 52 career games, the sopho more has 18 goals on the man advantage. As a freshman, he ranked second on the team with 32 points (14g, 18a), including 13 goals and six assist on the power play. He has two game-winning goals this season after being sel ected 26th overall in the first round by the St. Louis Blues in the 2016 NHL Draft.
White, the 2015-16 Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Year, tallied 43 points in just 37 games, scoring 19 goals and 24 assists despite missing a pair of games while competing in the 2016 World Junior Championship. He helped Team USA to a bronze medal in the competition, scoring three goals and four assists in seven outings in the red, white, and blue. Last season, he was the most productive rookie in college hockey with 1.16 points per game. He is a prospect of the Ottawa Senators after being selected 21st overall in the first round of the 2015 NHL Draft.
Fabbro, has six points in 12 games for Boston University this fall, highlighted by a one-goal, two-assist effort in his last outing, last Tuesday against Harvard. The first-round Nashville Predators draft pick (17th overall) leads all NCAA freshmen defensemen with three power-play goals, ranks tied for seventh at plus-seven and eighth with 29 shots on goal.
Jesper Mattila, a rookie defenseman for Boston College, has recorded two goal s and five assists for seven points through 18 games. He chipped in on the game-winning goal October 16 at Wisconsin and posted a two-point outing with one goal and one assist at Massachusetts October 29.
Julius Mattila, a freshman forward for the Eagles alongside his brother, has registered eight points on two goals and three assists in 10 games played after missing time to injury. He's posted two multi-point outings, netting a goal and adding an assist both at Wisconsin on October 16 and at UConn on November 22, both wins for Boston College.
Bjorkqvist is a first-year forward that was selected 61st overall in the s econd round of the 2016 NHL Draft by the Pittsburgh Penguins. After missing the first five games of the se ason, he has since collected one goal and one assist in nine games he has appeared in. He scored the first goa l of his career in a 2-1 setback to Boston University on December 2, Providence's only goal of the contest.
Huska has started his rookie campaign with the UConn Huskies with a 3-3-3 record, claiming the best save percentage in Hockey East conference play (.938) and fourth in goals against average (2.11.). He has been named Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week once (Oct. 31) and Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week twice (Nov. 21, Dec. 5) Huska was also named to Slovakia's World Junior Team last year.
The U.S. group is auditioning for a spot on the final 23-man roster that will represent the United States in the 2017 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship from December 26, 2016 - January 5, 2017, in Montreal and Toronto, Canada. The players will attend training camp December 16-20 at HarborCenter in Buffalo, New York, followed by an additional camp in Oshawa, Ontario, from December 20-24. The final 23-man roster is expected to be named by December 24.