January is a key month for Florida Eels exposure and recruitment as they immerse themselves in the Northeastern U.S.
First, the Eels will head as an organization to compete in the USPHL Winter Showcase in Marlboro, Mass.
The Eels’ Premier and Elite teams will face off against teams from the Northern divisions. There will be over 70 teams playing in one of the biggest prospects showcase in North America. There will be a plethora of college coaches in attendance scouting and actively recruiting for their 2017-18 and 2018-19 recruiting classes.
“This showcase is indeed a phenomenal one,” said Eels general manager Frank Scarpaci. “In the past, the Florida Eels have advanced hundreds of players to college hockey from garnering the eyes and attention of college recruiters. In the end that is our No. 1 goal and mission. College advancement is the most important statistic of an organization.”
The Eels already have two players committed for next season, and are expected to announce another four or five in January.
The second phase of the Northeastern march is that we advance no less than three of our players to the NCDC for a week.
“This is very special for our players and organization. This is the inaugural year of this affiliate-based program whereby several of our players get to move up for a week to practice and train with the NCDC affiliate and get to experience an NCDC program,” said Scarpaci. “It is truly player development in action. For the Eels, our affiliate is the Islanders Hockey Club. Coach [Sean] Tremblay is very excited to have our players join his team and have them participate in the week-long program.”
“These players will then return back to the Eels and bring with them the experiences gained while with our affiliate,” Scarpaci added. “We have some very talented players and by having this affiliate program our players will have an opportunity to garner NCAA Division 1 opportunities.”
The third phase of the Eels’ Northeastern experience is the 10th annual Eels College Tour.
Eels ’97 and several ’98 players will visit colleges across New England, meeting with college head and assistant coaches, players and college faculty members.
“This is truly a hallmark for the Eels as it provides firsthand experiences for the players to actually visit and see the schools,” said Scarpaci. “Of the 204 players advanced to college from the Eels program in its history, 175 have gone on this college tour in the past.”
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