The Chicago Blackhawks and the state of Illinois will be well-represented when the USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp begins Saturday.
Four Blackhawks prospects, including one from Illinois, and two other Illinois players were among the 42 invitees to the eight-day camp in Lake Placid, N.Y. The camp is used to help select a roster for the World Junior Championship in December.
Blackhawks prospect forwards Anthony Louis, who is from Winfield, Ill., Tyler Motte, Nick Schmaltz and John Hayden will participate in the camp. Illinois natives J.T. Compher, who is from Northbrook Ill. and is a Buffalo Sabres prospect, and Louis Belpedio, who is from Skokie, Ill. and is a Minnesota Wild prospect, will also attend the camp.
Louis, Hayden and Schmaltz played together on a line throughout the Blackhawks prospect camp last month and received praise from Blackhawks personnel. Louis, a 2013 sixth-round pick, will be a sophomore at Miami (Ohio) next season. Hayden, a 2013 third-round pick, will be a sophomore at Yale. Schmaltz, a 2014 first-round pick, will be a freshman at North Dakota. Motte was unable to attend the Blackhawks prospect camp and will be a sophomore at Michigan next season.
The U.S. players will be divided into two teams and will play teams from the Czech Republic, Finland and Sweden during the camp. Blackhawks prospects Robin Norell and Carl Dahlstrom, both defensemen, will play for Sweden at the camp.