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USPHL Elite Players Of The Month – October 2022: North Division

Forwards

Austin Larson, Northern Cyclones 

Larson’s division-leading 1.67 points per game through the end of October led the division, just as the Cyclones led the entire Elite Conference with a .955 winning percentage off a 10-0-1-0 record. Larson was there every step of the way, missing the scoresheet only once out of the nine games he played, putting up a line of seven goals and eight assists for 15 points. 

An ‘03 out of Berlin, Conn., Larson is in his fifth USPHL season and fourth in the Cyclones organization, with whom he’s played in the USPHL 16U and USPHL 18U divisions the last three years, getting a call-up to his first two Elite games last year. He also got into a 2022 playoff game as the Cyclones made their push all the way to the Elite National Championship game. 

 

Dylan Reynolds, Islanders Hockey Club 

Though the Islanders have played just nine games so far this season, Reynolds has already found a way to score in droves, posting a goal per game average early on with nine tallies in nine contests through the end of October. 

A first-year USPHL rookie out of Connecticut’s Xavier High School, the ‘04 forward put up a 2-2-4 line in his junior debut on Sept. 22 against a strong Bridgewater squad. He posted a hat trick in Game 3 against the current No. 3 team in the league, the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights, at the BJB Shootout. He closed October with a 2-1-3 performance against old friends the Bandits. He has also posted four assists for 13 points in nine games, good for a 1.44 points per game average.  

 

Liam Norton, Bridgewater Bandits 

Norton (‘04) has been a big cog in the machine behind the Bandits’ impressive start, signified by an 11-5-1-0 record and a division-leading 23 points. Individually, Norton ran out to a 9-13-22 scoring line in his first 16 games. This included a red-hot eight-game point streak of five goals and 10 assists for 15 points between Oct. 3-22. 

Norton has already proven he can handle himself at the next level, as well. He got a Premier call-up on Sept. 24 and scored a goal in his debut there, just as he did in his Sept. 22 Elite debut. 

 

Defensemen

Connor Horn, Islanders Hockey Club 

A product of Danvers High School in his Massachusetts hometown, this ‘04 blueliner has helped the Islanders remain a powerhouse in the Elite, looking to build on consecutive trips to the past two Nationals. With a 2-6-8 line in nine games, he scored his first two junior goals in the same game against the Hampton Roads Whalers from the always-strong Southeast Division at the Rockets Hockey Club Showcase.

Defensively, he’s helped the Islanders rank second in the Elite with just 27 shots against per game and eighth with a 2.89 team goals against average. 

 

Brady Bomal, Northern Cyclones

Right back we go to the only Elite team still undefeated in regulation, and we take a look at their veteran ‘03 defenseman from Westford, Mass. Bomal was a full-time member of the Cyclones Elite team that went to the National final last year. He put up seven points in five playoff games, after an eight point season in 40 regular season contests. 

Bomal has put up three goals and five assists for eight points through his first 11 points this season, all the while leading an ironclad defense. They lead the way in team goals against average (with a miniscule 1.45) and they are fourth in shots against per game (27.64, just two thirds of a shot behind their division rivals, the second-place Islanders). 

 

Goaltender

Maximilian Pierce, Northern Cyclones

No surprise here, as Pierce is the Elite leader in basically every goaltending category. Pierce (‘04/Harrison Township, Mich.) stands at 6-0, never having given up more than two goals in his Sept. 29 junior debut against the Islanders Hockey Club. Since then, it’s been two shutouts and three games of only one goal allowed. 

In the Oct. 8 rematch of the 2022 Elite National Championship Game, Pierce faced down 39 Richmond Generals shots, giving up just one in regulation – and then he stopped all three as the Cyclones exorcized their playoff demons by defeating the division champion 2-1 in a shootout. He remains the undisputed No. 1 in the league with a 0.81 goals against average and a .974 save percentage. 

Note: October Players Of The Month Also Includes Stats From September 2022. 

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