ATTLEBORO, Mass. – College and North American Hockey League scouts will get a good look at the Bulls roster when the NA3HL hosts its Top Prospects showcase next month. Six North Iowa players will head off to the league’s annual event, scheduled for February 17 and 18 at the New England Sports Village in Attleboro, Massachusetts, just minutes away from downtown Providence, Rhode Island.
The West Division roster will feature five North Iowa players, while defenseman Jack Kubitz will play on the Northeast Division roster. Other divisions are helping to fill the roster of the Northeast Division, which only has four teams. Kubitz is in his first full year for the Bulls out of Orono, Minnesota, and ranks in the top five on the Bulls roster with 21 assists.
Sean Sullivan is the only other North Iowa defenseman headed to the Top Prospects showcase, racking up 24 points on the season – the Middleton, Wisconsin native ranks fifth on the Bulls roster with a +24 plus/minus rating, and eight of his points have come on the power play.
Evan Babekuhl will represent the Bulls in net at the Showcase, racking up a 10-2 record with a 2.00 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage. The Long Lake, Minnesota native is currently tied with Dysen Skinner for the team lead in wins – Skinner spent all of last season with the Bulls and the first half of this season before earning a call-up to the Minnesota Magicians of the NAHL.
Three Bulls forwards will play for the West Division at the Top Prospects event, starting with mid-season addition Justin Daly. The former Kenai River Brown Bear has torn up the ice since joining the Bulls in mid-November, with 25 points in just 16 games. The Delano, Minnesota native’s point-and-a-half-per-game pace tops the team heading into the final weekend of January.
The Bulls’ next forward is already committed to the Brown Bears for next season, as Lucas Wahlin makes the trip to Attleboro as well. The Woodbury, Minnesota native and former Hill-Murray High School standout leads the team with 20 goals, and his 39 points ranks third on the North Iowa roster. Wahlin signed a tender last week with Kenai River, which became official on Monday.
The final call belongs to Nagano, Japan native Sota Isogai, who has quietly built one of the Bulls’ best resumes this year. Isogai’s 16 goals ranks fifth on this year’s roster, with hat tricks against both Breezy Point and Elmira this season.
As previously announced, North Iowa head coach Todd Sanden will be part of the team at the Top Prospects showcase, serving as the head coach of the West Division roster. It is the ninth time that Sanden has been involved with an NA3HL Top Prospects event, serving as the head or assistant coach of a team in every one of his seasons with the Bulls.
The Top Prospects event is one of the league’s top events of the year in terms of scouting. Held each year in conjunction with the NAHL’s Top Prospects showcase, more than 200 National Hockey League, NCAA and junior scouts were on hand for last year’s event.
The North Iowa Bulls congratulate all six players on earning the call to the NA3HL Top Prospects showcase next month in Massachusetts, and appreciate the many opportunities that will open up to all six players through their involvement in the event.