A Minnesota Wild prospect with State of Hockey ties has been named to the preliminary roster for the 2013 U.S. National Junior Team for a chance to represent the country at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship.
Mario Lucia will attend the country’s National Junior Team training camp, Dec. 16-18 in Tarrytown, N.Y. From New York, the camp will move on to Helsinki, Finland, Dec. 19-23. The final 23-player U.S. National Junior Team roster will be announced Dec. 23. The 2013 World Juniors are in Ufa, Russia, from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5.
In August, the former Wayzata Trojans forward was one of 45 players attended the 2012 U.S. National Junior Evaluation Camp in Lake Placid, N.Y., scoring three goals in three games for Team USA Blue.
The Wild’s second-round pick (60th overall) in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft is in his freshman year at the University of Notre Dame. After suffering a broken leg during preseason, Lucia has returned to action for the Irish, scoring four goals and an assist in six games. Yesterday, he was named the CCHA Rookie of the Week after a three-goal weekend in two wins over Lake Superior State.
Last season, the 6-foot-2, 187-pound forward skated for the Penticton Vees of the British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL). Lucia tied for the league lead in goals (42) and ranked third in assists (51). He was named to the BCHL All-Rookie Team and All-BCHL Second Team.
Lucia was a guest on the PONDcast, here.
Other Minnesotans named to the preliminary roster include Mike Reilly (Chanhassen) and Brady Skjei (Lakeville). The complete Team USA preliminary roster can be found, here.
State of Hockey legend Phil Housley (South St. Paul) head boy's ice hockey coach at Stillwater High School is the head coach of the 2013 U.S. National Junior Team. Grant Potulny (Minneapolis, Minn.), assistant men's ice hockey coach at the University of Minnesota will be one of the squad's assistant coaches.