For any young hockey player who grows up dreaming of winning a national championship, a scholarship offer to play college hockey at Boston College is hard to pass up.
That’s exactly the feeling Salisbury (Conn.) sophomore Jacques Bouquot had recently when he verbally committed to play for Jerry York’s Eagles.
“I felt very comfortable with Coach York and his staff. The hockey program is one of the best in the country, and they are consistently producing professional hockey players," Bouquot explained. "I felt it was the best place for me to become the best player and person I could be. Winning a national championship would be amazing. BC gives me the best chance to do that, as they are always national contenders."
Bouquot, who hails from South Windsor, Conn., also fell in love with the BC campus and the overall image of the school.
“The community at BC is great. Everyone is extremely supportive of the hockey program and student-athletes. It was the perfect fit for me to excel off the ice. I really like the campus and its location,” said Bouquot.
Boston College is getting one of the better young hockey players in the region. A recent fourth round draft pick by the Sioux City Musketeers in the USHL Futures Draft, he attended last summer’s USA Hockey Select 15 Player Development Camp in Amherst, NY.
“My strengths right now are my hockey sense, my hands and my ability to play multiple roles. I really like to think the game and play it fast,” said Bouquot, who prides himself in his ability to make plays.
Bouquot had six goals and nine assists in 29 games played this winter for coach Andrew Will’s Knights, a perennial power in prep hockey.
“I wasn't always the go to guy, being the youngest on the team so I had to really learn how to work hard and earn my ice time. It's not easy scoring goals in prep school hockey, and I had to work really hard to find ways to do so,” said Bouquot.
Being an elite athlete requires a lot of hard work and dedication to the craft, made easier if it is something you enjoy doing.
“I find the game of hockey extremely fun so it is easy for me to want to get better and still improve on my whole game. I love to be creative and possess the puck,” Bouquot said.
Salisbury’s streak of three consecutive prep school championships came to an end this winter, but it was still a good season. His first year in prep hockey was a learning curve, but he believes the improvement in his game was noticeable.
“Being on the ice every day with high level players and a great coaching staff, I got to work on my whole game,” said Bouquot.
He added: “I got a lot better around the net and in tight with my hands to make plays below the dots. I had to get a quicker, better shot to beat the goalies who were better than I was used to seeing."
Marshall Chooses Brown
Selects Academy at South Kent center Connor Marshall verbally committed this week to play college hockey at Brown University. The Parkland, Fla., native burst onto the scene this year, doubling his point total from a year ago.
“Connor has really started to identify his strengths as a player and how to implement and execute those strengths consistently over the past year and a half," said head coach Matt Plante. "This benefitted his production and our team's success significantly and I think Connor is still only scratching the surface."
Marshall, who was selected third overall by the Omaha Lancers in the USHL Draft, had 21 goals and 29 assists in 24 games for South Kent’s 18U team.
“Connor's strengths as a player are his hockey sense, his high compete level and his skating,” Plante stated. “He also possesses a tremendous shot and release which makes him a legitimate scoring threat off the rush and in the soft areas around the opponent's net.”
Huskies Come Calling
Avon Old Farms (Conn.) forward Tyler Madden has grown up around a lot of hockey rinks. His father, John, played in over 1,000 NHL games, mostly with the New Jersey Devils, and starred at the University of Michigan.
To say hockey is in Tyler’s bloodlines would be an understatement. This past week the younger Madden accepted a scholarship offer to call Northeastern University home for four years following two more years of prep and junior hockey.
Madden had 10 goals and 19 assists for John Gardner’s Winged Beavers. One of his linemates, Jamie Armstrong, had already committed to play for the Huskies. Madden’s USHL rights are owned by the Omaha Lancers.
Fawcett Commits to Bobcats
Winchendon sophomore forward Matt Fawcett verbally committed to Quinnipiac University this past week. The Lincoln, RI resident is an undersized forward with quick hands and slippery feet to evade defenders. In his first year of prep hockey, he led the team in scoring with 18 goals and 20 assists.