Today the Pittsburgh Penguins prospects put on a show for over 7,000 fans that packed the Consol Energy Center to watch their team’s future. The prospects were split up in two teams. Team White was coached by assistant to the General Manger, Tom Fitzgerald while Team Black was coached by former Penguin Bill Guerin. The game consisted of two 25 minute halves that included an overtime and shootout.
The first goal of the game was scored on a penalty shot by Reid McNeill (Team Black) after Alex Velischek was called for interference.
Recent draft pick Matia Marcantuoni evened up the game at 1-1, but minutes later Team Black took the lead after a goal by forward Zach Sill. Defenseman Simon Despres, who played 18 games with Pittsburgh this season, scored a late goal with two minutes left to tie it for Team White.
Newly acquired defenseman Brian Dumoulin (Jordan Staal trade) scored during the three-on-three overtime period. Dumoulin, 6-foot-4 219 pounder from Boston College, stood out at camp all week. His impressive play on the blueline shows just another upside from the Staal trade.
Speaking of recent acquisitions, Harrison Ruopp who was part of the Zbynek Michalek trade with Phoenix impressed with his size and strength. The Penguins had their eye on Ruopp even during last year’s draft before he was picked by the Coyotes. Although the Pens have a stacked blueline throughout their system, Ruopp brings more of a physical game that is sometimes hard to find in other players.
Other Camp Notes:
Try to keep your eyes open for Matia Marcantuoni, that is if he doesn’t skate by. The 2012 draft pick was easily one of the fastest guys on the ice. His stellar skating ability and good hands seem to point towards a bright future.
There’s not enough I can say positive about Brian Dumoulin. In addition to having an extremely fan-friendly personality, the defenseman who played at Boston College, is used to playing on a system based off the Pens blueline and it shows through his play.
One of the players that stood out the most during the scrimmage was free agent goaltender Ryan Faragher. Faragher played last season for St. Cloud State where he ended the season with a .915 save percentage. The 22-year-old played the entire game for the Black Team and made a handful of stellar saves and received several ovations from fans.
Forward Beau Bennett, who recently signed his first professional contract with the Pens, continues to recover from his wrist injury suffered while playing for the University of Denver this season. Although he says he is not yet 100% he still showed brilliance stick-handling and being mentioned by Head Coach Dan Bylsma as a candidate for Sidney Crosby’s line probably didn’t hurt the ego either.