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Just about every game at the U18 level could have gone either way. 3 games in round robin went to OT and a shootout. The most 1-sided game I saw was Whalers vs. NVRR, where the eventual tournament winner (Whalers) LOST 8-4.
The difference in the tournament was the Whalers had the best 2 players; one drafted in NHL last year, the other will be drafted this year. Other than that, the teams were even.
The #8 seed (Boch) was pretty close to the #1 seed (Whalers), and gave them all that they could handle.
4 seed (Rifles) vs. 5 seed (NVRR) went to OT and shootout, took 7 shooters to decide game (Rifles won). Similar for 3 seed (Eagles) vs. 6 seed (Mass Bruins).
Late games on Saturday determined teams that made semi finals, and all games were close.
Rifles vs. Whalers on Saturday at 10pm was as close a game you will see at U18 level, another OT with a shootout. A shootout with the skilled forwards on the Whalers is just too much to ask.
Reffing was a challenge all weekend; level of play and speed was very high, some refs had a hard time keeping up, especially in games later in the day. The 9pm-10pm starting times were a killer. Not their fault, just comes with territory.
In the end, the team with the best players will represent MA in Nationals.
At that age it's hard to differentiate at most levels. It explains why the red carpet is rolled-out for legacy kids...when in doubt, take the kid who is going into the family business because you know he will be committed...and dad's connections don't hurt!
It's hard if your a parent and only watch your kids games and take one close game as a sign of parity between players. For those that watch for a living it's not as close as you think.
Yeah your right. Your kid is right there. It's just no one can see it but you.
Well as far as the U18 states go, the team with the most "commits" didn't win a single game. Committing to a D1 college indicates a players ability compared to his peers correct? And as a previous poster stated the team with the best players wins. Then that team should have won the whole thing as they had the most committed "best players" but they couldn't muster a win. I guess those experts who do it for a "living" must either be really bad at what they do or using some other criteria for judging players. Other than the team that won it all that had 3 to 4 elite players, that anyone could see were the best, I don't believe the other three semi finalists had 3 or 4 commits combined.
The team that had the most commits were all 2000's. The other teams were majority '99s. Made a difference in a couple of the games. Don't feel bad for the 2000's, though, as many of them will be playing high-end D1 hockey in a few years.
Not to be a contrarian but the Lil Bruins were mostly 01s and 00s. 8 of the 12 skating in the final were 01 or 00. just saying
All 8 teams had top end 2000s. At u18, the extra year means less than it does when they are younger. At u16 you can see the older kids stand out, but not as much, if at all, at u18.
The Eagles did fine, as did other teams where 2000s were prominent players.
River Rats' best forward was a 2000, who scored 4 goals against Whalers. Senators had several 2000s who could arguably be their best players. Same with Rifles, who were missing their best 1999 forward due to injury.
Eagles did great.. didn't win a game. I guess thats the point of previous comments. The best kids, those with commits, should win games espentially against peers.