South captures 2023 NAHL Top Prospects title | North American Hockey League | NAHL
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South captures 2023 NAHL Top Prospects title

February 8, 2023

The 2023 NAHL Top Prospects Tournament came to a close on Tuesday, February 7th at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry Township, PA.

Thanks to a 5-4 win over Team Central, Team South finished the event with a 2-0 record and captured the Top Prospects title. Mason Mara (Lone Star Brahmas) and Ryan Mansfield (Odessa Jackalopes) tied for the scoring lead for the event, each with four points.

Tuesday Box Scores

Day 2 recaps

South 5 vs. Central 4 – In a match-up of 1-0 teams, the South Division got goals from five different players as they edged the Central Division, 5-4 to claim the Top Prospects crown for 2023. South got on the board early in the 1st period thanks to a goal from Johan Rosenquist (Lone Star Brahmas). The Central tied the game at 1-1 later in the 1st period with a goal from Calvin Hanson (Bismarck Bobcats). In a wild 2nd period, the Central jumped out to a 3-1 lead with back-to-back goals from North Iowa Bulls teammates Carter Theissen and Simone Dadie. The South then tied the game at 3-3 with back-to-back goals from Owen Thomas (Corpus Christi IceRays) and Hunter Hastings (New Mexico Ice Wolves). Before the period was over, Central regained the lead on a goal from Matthew Desiderio (Austin Bruins). In the 3rd period, the South took over and scored two goals early in the frame as Garrett Horsager (Oklahoma Warriors) tied the game at 4-4 and then just over a minute later a goal from William Lawson-Body (Oklahoma Warriors) proved to be the game-winner. Thomas Kiesewetter (Corpus Christi IceRays) made 20 saves in the win, while Nolan Suggs (El Paso Rhinos) made 44 saves in the loss.

East 5 vs. Midwest 1 – Brad McNeil (Maryland Black Bears) and Nicholas Bernardo (Maine Nordiques) each had two points to lead East to a 5-1 win over the Midwest Division. The East went up 1-0 in the 1st period thanks to a goal from defenseman Owen Luik (New Jersey Titans). The lead swelled to 3-0 in the 2nd period for the East thanks to goals from Maryland Black Bears teammates Jesse Horacek and Brayden Stannard. Team Midwest would cut into the league early in the 3rd period with their lone goal of the game from Ryan Finch (Kenai River Brown Bears), but East would pull away later in the 3rd period with a goal from McNeil and Henrik Hallberg (Maine Nordiques). For Team East, Aksel Reid (Springfield Jr. Blues) stopped all 12 shots that came his way and Gavin Moffatt (Wisconsin Windigo) stopped 13 of 14 shots in the win. Nils Wallstrom (Kenai River Brown Bears) made 32 saves in the loss.

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