Nashville Predators prospect Zach Stepan (third round/2012) has been invited to the United States National Junior Evaluation Camp, Aug. 3-10, in Lake Placid, N.Y. The players will be competing for spots on the U.S. National Junior Team that will participate in the 2014 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, Dec. 26, 2013-Jan. 5, 2014, in Malmo, Sweden.
Stepan, 19, completed his first season with the Waterloo Black Hawks of the United States Hockey League – the highest tier of junior hockey in the U.S. – in 2012-13. The 5-11, 170-pound forward finished the regular season first in the USHL in game-winning goals (9), third in points (32g-46a-78pts), fourth in assists and tied for sixth in goals. He was named USHL Forward of the Week on four occasions in 2012-13 (April 8, Jan. 7, Nov. 26 and Oct. 29).
Stepan becomes the second Nashville prospect from the 2012 Entry Draft to attend the National Team Evaluation Camp following Harvard University forward, Jimmy Vesey who won Gold at the 2013 World Juniors. Three other members of the Preds 2012 draft class participated in their respective countries evaluation camps last summer – Max Gortz (Sweden), Colton Sissons (Canada) and Mikko Vainonen (Finland).
The Hastings, Minn., native will attend Minnesota State University in 2013-14.