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Weekly Prospect Update - Dec. 7

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers

Trevor Koverko (Owen Sound) -- The Owen Sound Attack received a huge boost to their lineup with the return of rugged defenseman Koverko, who missed the teams first 26 games with a torn ligament in his shoulder. While others might be timid to return to their physical play after an injury like the one he suffered, Koverko showed his mental toughness by logging 8 penalty minutes with reckless abandon. While he didn't hit the scoreboard, his tough D was a force to be reckoned with along the blueline.

Tom Pyatt (Saginaw) -- Pyatt, the Rangers fourth round selection in the 2005 Entry Draft, had a weekend to remember, extending his point scoring streak to four games. But his two assist effort in the Spirit's 6-2 win over Mississauga and goal in the 7-4 drubbing of Saint Ste. Marie wasn't the most impressive feat of the young center's weekend. Rather, it was the announcement that Pyatt was selected as a candidate for Team Canada in the World Junior Championships that had the Hockey world buzzing. He is one of two Rangers prospects invited to compete in the tournament.

Marc Staal (Sudbury)--The Sudbury Wolves won two of three this weekend, led by the outstanding play of their stud defenseman. In addition to tallying a goal and two assists over the weekend, Staal notched the game-winning goal in the fifth round of a shoot-out against Belleville. While it is a rarity for a defenseman to be called upon so early in a shoot-out, the captain remained unfazed, skating in and calmly burying the puck in the back of the net. On the year, Staal now has seven goals and 23 assists, along with 33 penalty minutes, in 28 games, and is one of two Ranger prospects selected to play in the World Junior Championships.

Marc-Andre Cliche (Lewiston) -- Cliche is continuing to score for the MAINEiacs, and is currently on a three-game goal-scoring streak. Cliche has tallied three goals and two assists during the span. This weekend, the Lewiston center scored consecutive one-goal, one-assist performances in two road victories for Lewiston. First, the MAINEiacs defeated Cape Breton, 5-3; then they traveled to P.E.I. and beat the Rockets, 5-3. Cliche is second on the team in points, goals, and assists with 34, 14, and 20 respectively.

Brandon Dubinsky (Portland) -- Registering two-points this weekend, Dubinsky now has 14 goals and 24 assists for 38 points, along with 49 penalty minutes. He leads the team in scoring and assists and is tied for second on the team in goal-scoring. His 38 points also ranks him 5th in the WHL in scoring. He has eleven multi-point games including three two-point games, seven three-point games and one four-point game.

Ryan Russell (Kootenay) -- Russell notched two goals and one assist in two winning games for the Ice this weekend. The Ice are now 22-4 when Russell scores at least one point. He has notched at least one point in 26 of 34 games played including eleven multi-point games. Russell now has 18 goals and 22 assists for 40 points along with 15 penalty minutes and leads the team in all three scoring categories. His 40 points also rank him third in scoring in the WHL.

Michael Sauer (Portland) -- After two hip surgeries in the off-season and a shoulder injury at the beginning of this season causing him to miss 10 games, Sauer has come back strong for the Winter Hawks. This past weekend, he notched two goals to earn him first star of the game in Portland's win over Tri-City. He has played in 16 games and registered five goals and 11 assists. His 16 points tie him for 15th in scoring among all defensemen in the WHL.

Billy Ryan (University of Maine) -- After an impressive weekend, notching one goal and one assist in the Black Bears losing effort vs. Providence, Ryan now leads the team in scoring with 15 points. He is also tied for the team lead in assists with 11. He has notched four goals and tallied on two penalty minutes. Ryan has five multi-point games including four two-point games and one three-point game.

Jan Marek (Sparta Praha) -- Marek continues to his hot play in the Czech Extraleague. He currently is riding a three-game assist streak, compiling a goal and four assists since November 29. This past weekend, Marek had a goal and an assist in a 6-1 thrashing of HC Energie Karlovy Vary. He followed that up with an assist in a 4-3 loss at Vsetinska hokejova. Marek leads the club in assists for the season with 22 and is second in points and goals with 33 and 11 respectively. The team is 11-6-0 this year in games that Marek has registered a point.
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