BCHL alums among Top NCAA free agents



(ISN) – With several NCAA Div. I hockey programs having their seasons draw to a close, the annual push begins for NHL clubs to sign graduating players and underclassmen as free agents.

Already this week, former Alberni Valley Bulldogs defenceman Kenney Morrison of Western Michigan University signed with the Calgary Flames organization.

Several other BCHL graduates are among those garnering interest from NHL clubs:

Grayson Downing, Forward, University of New Hampshire, Senior (West Kelowna Warriors alum)
6-feet, 185 pounds
Hometown: Abbotsford, BC
Downing is a complete player offering an offensive flair to go along with a defensive conscience. Has an NHL-ready shot and has been among the Wildcats top scorers in each of his four NCAA seasons.

Matt Garbowsky, Center, RIT, Senior (Powell River Kings alum)
5-foot-10, 190 pounds
Hometown: St. George, Ont.
Garbowsky has won more faceoffs this season than any other player in NCAA Div. I hockey. He was named his conference’s Player of the Year and Best Defensive Forward. Leads the Tigers with 26 goals and 50 points, which was fifth in the nation. He was the 2011 BCHL Coastal Conference MVP.
Also, Garbowsky is one of three BCHL alums in the Top-10 Finalists for the Hobey Baker Award as the best player in NCAA hockey this season.

Casey Bailey, Forward, Penn State, Junior (Alberni Valley Bulldogs alum)
6-foot-3, 195 pounds
Hometown: Anchorage, AK
Bailey leads the Nittany Lions in scoring with 22 goals and 40 points

Troy Stecher, Defenceman, University of North Dakota, Sophomore (Penticton Vees alum)
5-foot-10, 190 pounds
Hometown: Richmond, BC
Still just 20 years old, Stecher is a smallish blueliner that makes quick decisions, moves the puck well and can run a power play. Size has not limited his defensive capabilities and he has been a plus player in each of his first two NCAA seasons. Attended summer development camps with the Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks last year. Was the 2013 BCHL Interior Conference Top Defenceman.