Dominating performances were the hallmark of Boston College men’s hockey’s 2019-20 season. Though the Eagles had a standout freshman class this season, many key plays on the ice came from the 11 members of the senior class—including standouts David Cotton, Graham McPhee, and the Mattila brothers.
With the seniors’ graduation, BC is left with lots of open spots on its roster, making way for the largest recruiting class since the Class of 2020. As BC Athletics announced on Wednesday, the Eagles will welcome 10 freshmen and one Division I transfer to Conte Forum next season.
The 2020-21 recruiting class includes six forwards, four defensemen, and one goaltender, replacing the same numbers lost to graduation. Here’s how the newest Eagles stack up:
The Agnew name is well known around BC, as incoming freshman Jack Agnew’s older sister Lindsay made her mark on the Conte Forum ice over the last four years. The younger Agnew comes to BC from Oakville, Ontario, where he played in the BCHL. The defenseman played two seasons at St. Andrew’s College Prep before heading to professional Canadian hockey.
The second of three Canadian products in BC’s 2020-21 recruiting class, Colby Ambrosio arrives on the Heights from Welland, Ontario. Last season, Ambrosio led his USHL team—the Tri-City Storm—with 26 goals and 50 points in 48 games. The forward also has experience representing his home country, as he played under the Canadian Flag at the 2019 Under-17 World Hockey Challenge.
Stephen Davis is the first of four local products in this recruiting class, as he grew up a stone’s throw from Chestnut Hill in Hingham, Mass. The defenseman comes to BC from the USHL’s Madison Capitols, where he skated in 45 games last season.
Liam Izyk is the only addition to BC’s roster with college hockey experience, as he comes to the Heights from the University of Alabama-Huntsville. The Alberta native played one year down South before deciding to transfer, and he will be immediately eligible as a sophomore this season. The forward also spent three years with the AJHL’s Ft. McMurray Oil Barons, where he was an assistant captain for two.
Even before arriving at BC, defenseman Tim Lovell has already begun to collect accolades, as he was named to the USHL All-Rookie Second Team while playing for Des Moines last season. He also won the ECEL Under-18 Championship back in 2019 while playing for the Boston Advantage. Coming to BC is somewhat of a homecoming for the Hingham, Mass. native.
Though Nikita Nestereneko is new to BC, he is not entirely unfamiliar with his new team, as he and Agnew played last season together for the BCHL’s Chilliwack Chiefs. Nesterenko was drafted 172nd overall in the 2019 NHL Draft by the Minnesota Wild, making him the only incoming player to be drafted into the NHL (this year’s draft was postponed due to COVID-19). The forward led Chilliwack in points per game last season with 20 goals and 36 assists.
Eamon Powell has spent the last few seasons representing his country with the U.S. Under-18 Team, Team USA, and the U.S. Under-17 squad, but he will make the transition to college hockey for next season. The defenseman saw action in 62 games for the U.S. Under-18 team last season, and before that, he played for Team USA at the 2019 Under-17 World Hockey Challenge.
Once at BC, Harrison Roy will also be reunited with one of his former teammates, as he and Lovell both played for the USHL’s Des Moines Buccaneers last season. Roy, another local product from Lakeville, Mass., spent one year at the Loomis Chaffee School before heading to the USHL in 2018. Over two seasons in the USHL, Roy played for four teams and skated in 89 contests.
Gentry Shamburger is one of just two BC prospects to come to BC directly out of a prep program, as he graduated from Avon Old Farms School, where he served as a captain for the last two seasons. Last season, the forward notched a career-high 17 points in 27 games.
For Danny Weight, hockey runs in the family. His father, Doug Weight, played 19 seasons in the NHL, where he notched over 1,000 points before earning a spot in the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame in 2013. Before arriving on the Heights, the younger Weight played in the BCHL, where he led his team in goals and had the third-most total points last season. He also spent two seasons with the U.S. National Team Development Program, which also produced Eagles’ standouts Matt Boldy and Spencer Knight, among others.
Rounding out the Eagles’ incoming Class of 2024 is BC’s newest goaltender, Henry Wilder. Wilder hails from Needham, Mass. and attended the Hotchkiss School to play prep hockey. There, he was named USHS First Team All-New England last season. In 20 games, Wilder recorded a .942 save percentage.
Featured Image by Jess Rivilis / Heights Editor