By Ron Rop
Local Sports Journal
It wasn’t your typical all-star game on Wednesday night at L.C. Walker Arena.
Many times, all-star games feature a wide-open style of play with the goalies being “hung out to dry” in a high-scoring affair.
Not in the second USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game, which was witnessed by 1,075 spectators at Walker Arena.
The final score: West 2, East 1.
“The playmaking was unbelievable and the goaltending was outstanding,” said Cary Eades, the winning head coach of the West team. “All four goalies played phenomenal. It was probably a 7-6 game and they turned into a 2-1 game.”
There were just three goals scored, two by West players Conor McGlynn from Sioux City and Jason Cotton from the Tri-City Storm.
The East countered with a third-period goal by John Hayden, from Team USA. Muskegon Lumberjack defenseman, Ben Storm, assisted on that goal.
Storm was one of four Lumberjacks to play in the game. The others were Michael Brodzinski, Cameron Darcy and Frederik Tiffels.
Brodzinski had a great scoring chance late in the first period, but he got robbed by West goaltender Eamon McAdam, who plays for Waterloo.
“That wasn’t me, that was somebody else wearing my jersey,” Brodzinski said, laughingly. “Wide open net and I could have put it anywhere but there and he made an unbelievable save.”
Despite being robbed by McAdam, Brodzinski enjoyed the experience.
“It was an awesome experience and I’d love to do it again sometime,” Brodzinski said.
And going in, knowing how many NHL scouts’ eyes were afixed in every play, Brodzinski tried to block it all out.
“I tried to keep all of that stuff out of mind and just play like another normal game and have fun with it,” Brodzinski said.
McAdam was named the Most Valuable Player from the West team and Hayden won the honor for the East team.
“It was a great atmosphere and great play,” Eades said. “It was a great showcase for our league and our players.”