By: Dante De Caria

Ottawa, Ontario – With the CCHL2 Playoffs right around the corner, we highlight some of the top performing ’01 / ’02 players of January who could make the jump to the CCHL Tier 1 next season.

December Prospect Report:

#1: ’01 F Thomas Freel (Ottawa Jr. Canadians)

Freel, 17, is one of the favorites to win the CCHL2 Top Prospect and Rookie of the Year award. He moves back to #1 on the Prospect Report after scoring five goals and nine assists in seven games of action. Freel has already played seven games with the Ottawa Jr. Senators of the CCHL Tier 1 this season, totaling two assists while playing on their fourth line. He is a smart two-way forward with excellent speed. After being the last cut at Ottawa’s camp, he is expected to join their roster in 2019-20. With the Jr. Canadians, the Ottawa native has 51 points (28 G / 30 A) in 38-games.

#2: ’01 F Tyler Toomey (Brockville Tikis)

Toomey, 17, scored seven goals and seven assists (14 points) in eight games last month – helping the Tikis go 6-1 in January. Toomey moves up to #2 on January’s Prospect Report because he is showing the Brockville Braves organization that he can play for their squad next season. I’d expect them to invite him to camp because he is a power forward, who has great play making skills and is very physical. This season, the Hillsburgh, Ontario native ranks second among rookies in assists (24), third among rookies in points (42) and fifth in goals (18).

#3: ’01 F Dylan Kuehl (Whitewater Kings)

Kuehl, 17, is not a rookie but jumps to #3 on this Prospect Report after scoring 10-goals and eight assists in 10-games last month. The second year Kings forward does not blow you out of the water with just one skill. He is a crafty forward who can put the puck in the net, pass, hit and play in his own zone. The Pembroke Lumber Kings organization might have a steal in Kuehl, who did not play for their Midget team, as he was signed out of the Upper Ottawa Valley Aces Bantam AA program as a 16-year-old. The Killaloe, Ontario native has 20 goals and 25 assists in 35-games this season. 

#4: ’02 D Alex Rossides (Embrun Panthers)

Rossides, 16, might just be the top offensive-defenseman prospect in the CCHL2. Last month, the Ottawa Jr. Senators prospect scored two goals and five apples in seven games with the Embrun Panthers. He is a speedy D-man who can jump into the rush at any time but is still looking to improve his game in his own end. He has a strong chance at making Ottawa’s roster next season, but if needed, one more season with Embrun won’t hurt his development. The Embrun, Ontario native has 19 points in 29-games this season.

#5: ’01 F James Lister (Carleton Place Jr. Canadians)

Lister, 17, is a 6’5 body that protects the puck well, stays out of the box (0 PIM), uses his size and holds lethal shot. He is exactly that the Carleton Place Canadians need next season as he fits right into their scheme. He is a tough forward who will excel in their small barn, where teams fear them. The Kanata, Ontario native scored four goals and two assists in five games before suffering an upper-body injury last month. The second year Canadians forward has 15 goals and 29 points in 32 games this season.

Coaches Pick: ’01 F Noel Moses de Kemp (Ottawa Jr. Canadians) 

De Kemp, 17, gets back on the Prospect Report after being snubbed from last months report. The Pembroke Lumber Kings acquired his Jr. A rights from the Rockland Nationals at the trade deadline, and he has already played one game for them. Last month he totaled five goals and one assist in seven games of action. The Ottawa native, among rookies, ranks second in goals (23) and fourth in points (40) in just 36-games this season. He is a big forward who possesses great speed and excellent play making abilities.

HM: Jake CodeArtyom ShimanOwen BennettJustin JamerSean Bailey