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Islanders Prospect Report: College Catchup checks in with the Islanders NCAA Prospects

by Sasha Kandrach KandrachSasha /

Development camp has come and gone and the New York Islanders prospects are all back home for the summer. For the Isles collegiate prospects, development camp is their one chance to work directly with Islanders coaches during the season, as they are not eligible to participate in the team's main training camp in September. That also means it's a chance for to check in with the collegiate prospects to catch up on their season.

Editor's note: Click here to read about Oliver Wahlstrom's season at Boston College and Bridgeport 

Ruslan Iskhakov, C, University of Connecticut 

2018 second-round pick (43rd overall)

2018-19 season stats: 32GP 6G 15A 21P

The 2018-19 season was a big transition for Ruslan Iskhakov, who came over from Russia to join the NCAA ranks. Iskhakov recorded 21 points (6G, 15A) in 32 games, finishing third in scoring on a ninth-place UConn squad, who went 12-20-2, including 7-15-2 in the Hockey East.

Iskhakov's season started with an injury scare, as the 18-year-old Russian was knocked unconscious following a hit against Quinnipiac University on Oct. 16. Fortunately, Iskhakov was okay and returned to action on Oct. 26. 

His production improved as the season wore on, as Iskhakov recorded 13 points (4G, 9A) in the final nine games of the season, suggesting he felt more comfortable with the North American game, as well as the demands of school and learning a new language. He's slated to be back at UConn next season.

Benjamin Mirageas, D, Providence College 

2017 third-round pick (77th overall)

2018-19 season stats: 42 GP 2G 11A 13P

Ben Mirageas and the Providence Friars took their season all the way to the Frozen Four semifinals in Buffalo - their first trip back to the Frozen Four since its title run back in 2015. Their run was halted in the semifinals to the eventual national champion Minnesota-Duluth, but it was a good learning experience for the sophomore defenseman. During the season the Friars went 24-12-6 in the regular season and 14-7-3 to earn second place in Hockey East standings.

Tweet from @FriarsHockey: To Buffalo!#GoFriars

"It was a great run," Mirageas said. "We were right there. It's exciting knowing how close we came, but obviously sucked losing like that. I'm excited to get back to campus in a few weeks and start training again. That's our goal this season for sure, is to make it back and make another run [at the national championship]."

Logan Cockerill, LW/RW, Boston University  

2017 seventh-round pick (201st overall)

2018-19 season stats: 37GP 4G 7A 11P

Logan Cockerill and the Boston University Terriers posted a regular season record of 16-18-4 and a conference record of 12-9-3 to finish fifth in the Hockey East conference. Individually, Cockerill wrapped up his sophomore season with the Terriers and won silver with Team USA at the 2019 U20 World Juniors Championships in Vancouver. Next season, Cockerill will wear an "A" on his sweater at BU. 
"It was a great season," Cockerill said. "I love everything playing at BU. I feel like I'm rounding out my game more and more. [Islanders Development Camp definitely helps. You just try to soak up everything from the drills, the workouts, video, the meals, the coaching staff and the schedule."

Nick Pastujov, LW, University of Michigan (Big 10)

2016 seveth-round pick (193rd overall)

2018-19 season stats: 36 GP 11G 13A 24P

Nick Pastujov set new career-highs in goals (11), assists (13) and points (24) in his third year at Michigan. Pastujov took a step forward individually, but Michigan missed the 2019 NCAA tournament after going to the Frozen Four the season prior (2017-18). On the year, Michigan registered a regular season record of 13-16-7 and a conference record of 9-10-5-2. The Wolverines did beat rival Notre Dame 4-2 in an outdoor game hosted in South Bend, IN. Pastujov had two assists in the outdoor game and called it a "highlight" of his hockey career. Now entering his senior year, the Bradenton, Florida native is appreciative of his choice to pursue the collegiate path. 

"College is somewhere where you can come in at 18-years-old and take four years to really develop," Pastujov said. "I think everyone is on their own timeline and college gives really good flexibility for that. You really have so much going on. I think it gets you more prepared for the real world a lot faster. 

"Coming into my senior year, I'm feeling really confident," Pastujov added. "I feel like I've come in with more confidence every year and so has the team."

Jacob Pivonka, C, University of Notre Dame

2018 fourth-round pick (103rd overall)

2018-19 season stats: 40 GP 2G, 8A, 10P

Jake Pivonka and the Fighting Irish went 23-14-3 during the regular season and claimed second place in the Big 10 conference after posting a 11-11-2 record. Pivonka suited up in all 40 regular season games and helped Notre Dame clinch its second-straight Big 10 championship title. In the NCAA tournament, the Fighting Irish made it to the quarterfinals before their run was halted 4-0 at the hands of the University of Massachusetts, who were the eventual runner-up. 

Tweet from @NDHockey: Shirts.Hats.Back-to-back Big Ten crowns.#GoIrish

Pivonka was named to Team White roster for the USA Hockey 2019 World Junior Showcase. Pivonka previously played for the U.S. National Team Development Program Juniors from 2016-18 and took home gold with Team USA at the 2018 U-18 World Championships. 

Collin Adams, LW, University of North Dakota (NCHC)  

2016 sixth-round pick (170th overall)

2018-19 season stats: 32 GP 2G 5A 7P

Collin Adams and the North Dakota Fighting Hawks finished fifth in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) this past year. During the regular season, North Dakota posted a record of 18-17-2 and a conference record of 12-11-1 but missed the NCAA tournament for a second straight season. While disappointing, it's notable that the NCHC is arguably the most competitive conference in the NCAA and has claimed the national championship for the past four consecutive years. 

"The NCHC is a tough league," Adams said. "There are no easy games. Every team is a contender. You've got to take it game-by-game and play your best every night."

Adams, who will be a junior this fall, is looking forward to the leadership role that coincides with being an upperclassman. He hopes to help re-establish North Dakota's notorious winning-culture and continue advancing his individual development. 

"I feel like you grow a lot as a person and a player in college," Adams said. "It gives you a lot of responsibility not only being a student athlete, but also the school work side. You've got to get that done during the week and then get to play hockey on the weekends...I'm looking forward to taking on more of a leadership role."

Christian Krygier, D, Michigan State University 

2018 seventh-round pick (196th overall)

2018-19 season stats: 33 GP 0G, 2A, 2P

Christian Krygier and the Michigan State Spartans went 12-19-5 in the regular season and finished bottom of the Big 10 conference with a record of 8-12-4-2. Krygier, who is 19-years-old, adjusted to the initial learning curve of being a Division I athlete. 

"Time management is a key thing" Krygier said. "Balancing school and having to play hockey is tough. You have to do everything everyone else is doing and also the workload of your sport. I think it just comes down to getting your priorities straight and being focused on and not getting distracted. The distractions can definitely take away from making sure you're able to do everything that you need to get done."

Krygier recorded two assists in 33 games, but his role on the Spartans is to be a defensive defenseman. The left-shot blueliner is excited for the upcoming season and getting back into a routine. In the meantime, Krygier was named to Team Blue roster for the USA Hockey 2019 World Junior Showcase which takes place at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Michigan, from July 26-Aug. 3.

Andong Song, D, Cornell University 

2015 sixth-round pick (172nd overall)

2018-19 season stats: 2GP 0G 0A 0P

Andong Song played in two games during his freshman season at Cornell. Cornell finished the regular season with a record of 21-11-4 and finished second in the Eastern College Athletic Conference and placed second in the ECAC tournament. Cornell made its third-consecutive postseason run, but lost 4-0 in the quarterfinals to Providence College. 

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