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Watching Washtenaw

By Craig Peterson 01/22/2020, 1:30pm EST

Top players in the Ann Arbor area ready for a big week

I don’t think there’s too many areas around the state I’ve left out of the Dream Team of the Week series…

✅Metro Detroit

✅Grand Rapids

✅Mid-Michigan

✅Upper Peninsula

✅Traverse City

...I’ve made my rounds and tapped into a lot of the top players in MI-HS, and there’s still lots to get to! Putting a spotlight on the Ann Arbor area this week, with seven programs in a 722 square-mile area and four major ice rinks, Washtenaw County has produced some hidden gems over the years. I’m looking to find a couple this week, highlighting a few of those players.

TOP PERFORMERS

WEEK 2

Austin Combs, Milford

6 G, 4 A

16 FPS

WEEK 8

Brady Rappuhn, Saginaw Heritage

5 G, 5 A

15 FPS

WEEK 1

Doug Wood, University Liggett

3 G, 8 A

14 FPS

WEEK 5

Shane Romback, Macomb Dakota

5 G, 2 A

12 FPS

WEEK 3

Mason Kelly, Forest Hills Central

4 G, 3 A

11 FPS

 

The bar is set pretty high, and teams are in need of primetime performances with just four weeks remaining in the regular season. 

Week Ten

Monday, January 20th - Sunday, January 26th

FORWARD, Senior Gaetano Cammarata, Marquette

SCHEDULE: 1/21 vs. Kingsford, 1/24 vs. Port Huron Northern, 1/25 vs. Grosse Pointe South

The Redmen are a very balanced team with a decent amount of depth, but Cammarata is their guy leading the charge on their top line. He has nine multi-point games this season, and six points in Marquette’s last three games. Even if you keep him from scoring, the 5-foot-8 forward is dynamic enough to find teammates and set up plays, hurting you in other ways with his play-making ability. Three games on the board this week and I can’t wait to see how he does in the finale against GPS.

 

FORWARD, Senior Andrew Hovey, Mount Pleasant

SCHEDULE: 1/22 vs. Midland, 1/24 vs. Bay Area

He’s second in the state in scoring with 47 points in 16 games. I don’t put too much stock into that but if he can put together a nice outing against a good Midland team, it’d be a significant notch on his belt for the senior. I’d make the argument that a multi-point game against the Chemics carries more weight than any of his previous five-point performances this season, so keep an eye on that matchup. Hovey’s a do-it-all for the Oilers, even playing defense at times and patrolling the blue line on the power play. 

 

FORWARD, Junior Adam Pietila, Hartland

SCHEDULE: 1/22 @ Stevenson, 1/24 @ St. Ignatius, 1/25 vs. Loyola Academy

I’ll admit, I’ve overlooked Pietila a bit this year. The second-year junior has flown under my radar at least, and quietly compiled 19 goals and 32 points against the 11th toughest schedule in the state, posting points in all 14 games this season. The 6-foot forward can pack a punch too, and bring a physical edge to the ice while also being clever enough to create ways of attacking the net. He has seven goals in the Eagles’ last four games and faces some significant challenges this week, but is playing some fantastic hockey at the moment.

 

DEFENSEMAN, Isaac Lippert, Ann Arbor Skyline

SCHEDULE: 1/22 vs. Chelsea, 1/24 vs. Saline

He has seven goals and 25 points through 11 games this season from the blue line and is second on the team in scoring. The four-year senior has varying results against these two familiar foes. First, Lippert’s produced six points in five career games against Chelsea, but against Saline, he has been held scoreless in his last five outings, with his only points coming in January of his freshman year (according to The Hub). It’s noteworthy, but I still think it’s a big week for D-man in two games with high stakes.

 

DEFENSEMAN, Senior Austin Selmi, Pinckney

SCHEDULE: 1/22 @ Temperance Bedford, 1/25 vs. Saline

Six of Selmi’s 16 points have come in Pinckney’s last three games. The left-handed senior is red hot right now and I think he continues that run this week. The Pirates are 6-2-0 when Selmi gets on the score sheet, and he’s been a major factor with four points in a 6-4 win over Notre Dame and a two-point performance in a 4-3 victory over Livonia Churchill. Those are the types of performances I’m looking for when a player can thrive against tough matchups, and will their teams to victories. 

 

GOALIE, Senior Mike Leighton, Ann Arbor Pioneer

SCHEDULE: 1/22 vs. Lenawee, 1/24 @ Cabrini, 1/25 @ Jackson United

My man, Mikey! The senior captain is second in the state with a .957 save percentage and that’s something I do put some credence into as far as statewide leaders are concerned. He’s also got a 1.41 goals-against average and with the exception of a wonky outing against Riverview, he’s been lights out between the pipes. Leighton is flirting with a 10-win season and I think given the matchups, it could happen as soon as this week. I also gotta give credit to his P-I-C and fellow captain, Robbie Haviland, who’s having a Hell of a campaign in his own right with .966 save percentage and sub-1.00 goals-against average. 

Okay, let’s all settle in for a great week of hockey and you know I’m always down to discuss players, teams, picks and projections on Twitter, so bring it on!