NEW YORK — Today, January 12, NHL Central Scouting released its Midterm Rankings. Among the players listed, five players with ties to the Dubuque Fighting Saints were listed. Current Fighting Saints forward Stephen Halliday and goaltender Paxton Geisel, alums Matt Savoie and Hobie Hedquist, along with affiliate Rieger Lorenz, were all listed among top NHL prospects in North America.
Savoie, 18, is listed as the third-best prospect in North America, and is a consensus top-tier 2022 NHL Draft choice this upcoming summer. In 34 games as a Fighting Saint, Savoie scored 21 goals and posted 38 points. Even in just half of a USHL season, Savoie’s consistently incredible performance earned him USHL All-Rookie First Team honors. He currently leads the Western Hockey League in scoring with 52 points (18-34-52) in 34 games as a member of the Winnipeg Ice.
Lorenz, 17, is ranked 24th at the midterm. The Calgary native is listed on the Fighting Saints’ affiliate list after being selected 14th overall in Phase I of the 2020 USHL Draft. Lorenz ranks fourth in AJHL scoring as a member of the Okotoks Oilers with 63 points in 40 games (26-37-63). He is committed to Denver University.
Halliday, 19, has been one of the USHL’s elite performers this year and is ranked 108th at the midterm. Heading into action this weekend, the Glenwood, Maryland native is tied for the league lead in points with 49 (18-31-49). Halliday has a distinguished laundry list of accomplishments, including being second in Fighting Saints Tier I scoring, being a USHL All-Academic Team honoree, being named USHL Forward of the Week twice during the 2021–22 season, and being the first overall pick in Phase I of the 2018 USHL Draft. Most recently, Halliday was named to the 2022 BioSteel All-American Game roster, set to take place on Monday, January 20 at USA Hockey Arena. Halliday is committed to Ohio State University.
Hedquist, 18, is ranked 23rd among goaltenders in North America. The Minnesotan played 22 games as a member of the Dubuque Fighting Saints, and posted a 5-9-1 record, a 4.30 GAA and an .838 save percentage. He currently plays for the Alberni Valley Bulldogs of the BCHL, and in 20 appearances, has a 12-4-3 record, a 2.59 GAA and a .910 save percentage. Hedquist is committed to the University of North Dakota.
Geisel, 17, is ranked 28th among North American goaltenders. Among netminders in the USHL this season, Geisel is tied for the second-most wins (12), with nine of them coming in consecutive fashion. That nine-game personal winning streak is the second-longest in the Fighting Saints’ Tier I history, behind Art Brey’s 12. In 20 appearances in Dubuque, Geisel, who will also play in the 2022 BioSteel All-American Game, has a 12-5-2 record, a 3.16 GAA and an .899 save percentage. His junior career began with the St. Cloud Norsemen of the NAHL, where he earned NAHL All-Central Division Rookie Team honors. Geisel is committed to Denver University.
The 2022 NHL Draft will be held at the Bell Centre in Montréal in July. Round one will take part on Thursday, July 7, and rounds 2 through 7 will commence on Friday, July 8.