Storm get goalie, defenceman and forward in U18 draft

GUELPH – The Guelph Storm helped themselves to a bit of everything as they selected a goaltender, defenceman and forward in the Ontario Hockey League’s annual U18 draft Wednesday.

Nine other teams (Barrie Colts, Erie Otters, Flint Firebirds, Kingston Frontenacs, Kitchener Rangers, North Bay Battalion, Peterborough Petes, Sarnia Sting and Windsor Spitfires) did the same.

The Storm selected goaltender Felix Schnell from Ottawa Senators midget AAA in the first round, 13th overall and grabbed blueliner Brendan Boyce from CIH Academy Green midget AAA in the second round, 33rd overall. In the third round, 52nd overall, the Storm picked centre Gavin Brown from North Bay Trappers midget AAA.

Schnell had a 14-5-0-0 record and four shutouts in 23 games with Ottawa Senators midget AAA this season. He also posted a 2.16 goals-against average and .913 save percentage.

Boyce had 14 goals and 35 assists in 42 games with CIH Academy Green midget AAA this season. He also had an assist in five games with Rockland of the tier 2 Central Canada Hockey League.

Brown struck for 24 goals and 30 assists in 36 games with North Bay Trappers midget AAA this season.

This is the third year for the U18 draft and the Storm selected a goaltender in the first round each time as they took James Walker in the first round in the inaugural five-round U18 draft in 2017 and they took Tanner Wickware last year.

None of the eight players taken in the previous two U18 drafts have played in a regular-season game for the Storm.

Chances of making an OHL team for the players selected in the U18 draft are pretty slim. Of the total of 149 players taken in the first two U18 drafts, seven went on to play in the OHL.

Defenceman Victor Hadfield, the first player ever taken in an OHL U18 draft when he was selected first overall by the Barrie Colts in 2017, had two goals and five assists in 78 games with the Colts.

Defenceman Emmett Serensits had five goals and 19 assists in 124 games with the Sudbury Wolves and fellow defenceman Marko Jakovljevic had a goal and 10 assists in 84 games with the Sarnia Sting.

Right winger Kaleb Pearson had 14 goals and 14 assists in 66 games with the Owen Sound Attack this season. He was selected by the Flint Firebirds in the 2017 U18 draft, but never played for the Firebirds.

Left winger Cameron Gaylor had three goals and an assist in 42 games with the Mississauga Steelheads and Seva Losev, another left winger, had two goals and an assist in 30 games with the Ottawa 67’s.

Goaltender Mitchell Weeks played in four games with the Sudbury Wolves this season. Weeks, the first overall pick of last year’s U18 draft, was the only player selected in that draft to play in the league this season.

A total of 54 players were taken in this year’s draft — 22 forwards, 18 defencemen and 14 goalies.


  • Guelph Sports Journal