It was announced earlier today that USA Hockey has named it’s team for the first ever U18 Hlinka Gretzky Cup to be played in North America.
Among the 21 players selected were two players from the Western Hockey League as well as a player whose rights are held by the Victoria Royals.
Defenseman Luke Reid holds dual Canadian – American citizenship and plays in the BCHL with the Penticton Vees. The Victoria Royals drafted him in the second round of the 2015 WHL Bantam Draft. He has since played one season for the Vees, registering two goals and adding 16 assists. He has committed to the University of North Dakota program for the 2020-21 season.
Also among the players selected was Spokane Chiefs left wing, Luke Toporowski. The 17-year-old forward is from Bettendorf, Iowa. Toporowski was selected by the Chiefs eighth overall in the 2016 WHL bantam draft, out of the Chicago Mission Bantam Major AAA program. This past season he played in 61 WHL games with the Chiefs, registering 10 goals and adding 13 assists. Luke’s older brother Jake was also a member of the Chiefs before retiring at the beginning of the 2017-18 season to pursue a teaching degree.
Everett Silvertips netminder Dustin Wolf, the heir apparent to Carter Hart, was also named to the USA Hockey U-18 team. Wolf, a native of Tustin, CA, USA will share the net with Derek Mullahy from the United States High School hockey program. Despite being the backup for Carter Hart, Wolf saw action in 20 WHL regular season games. He compiled a 13-6-0-0 record to go with four shutouts. He also posted a 2.25 goals against average and a .928 save percentage. He saw just nine minutes of playoff action, on route to the Western Conference title. Wolf was selected 104th overall in the 2016 WHL bantam draft by the Silvertips.
Portland Winterhawks defenseman Clay Hanus was named to one of the all star teams but did not make the final Hlinka Gretzky Cup roster.
Other WHLers at the Select 17 camp were Aidan Lawson (Edmonton), Nick Perna (Portland) and Hunter Campbell (Calgary).
The rest of the USA Hockey team for the Hlinka Gretzky Cup can be found here.