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Fighting Saints Conclude Phase II With 23 Selections

By Jordan Kuhns, 05/03/16, 5:00PM CDT

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Size added to defense, hard-working forwards join the new mix

DUBUQUE, Iowa — The Dubuque Fighting Saints hockey staff selected the “Class of 2016” during Phase II of the USHL Draft on Tuesday morning. Below are the selections, by round.

The blue line will see a revamping of size and puck distribution ability, with additions such as 6’3” first-round pick Patrick Kudla (1st), who added 66 points last season in the OJHL. Other imposing defensemen such as Thomas Keane (12th), the brother of current defenseman Joey Keane, Max Salpeter (17th) and James Crossman (20th), all come with size and ability.

Goaltender Mike Robinson, chosen in the second round of Phase II, brings accolades along with him to the tryout camps ahead this summer. Robinson was once ranked 8th among North American goalies in his draft year, and eventually drafted in the third round of the 2015 NHL Draft by the San Jose Sharks.

An influx of Swedes and Finns joined the “Class of 2016.” Finns Santeri Virtanen (6th) and Veli-Matti Tiuraniemi (8th), and Swedes Erik Ullman (6th) and Lukas Wernblom (18th), added to the mix of the Saints’ potential future.

In the end, head coach/GM Jason Lammers, associate head coach/assistant GM Oliver David and director of player personnel Kalle Larsson selected 14 forwards, 8 defensemen, and one goalie during the second phase of the USHL Draft.

Dubuque’s staff and current players now return their attention to the Eastern Conference Final, as Games 3 and 4 of the series shift to Bloomington. Catch all of the action on Dubuque’s Super Hits 106.1 FM on Friday, May 6 starting at 6:50 p.m. for the pregame show of Game 3.

Round Name Hometown Position Former Team Birth Year
1 Patrick Kudla Guelph, ON D Oakville Blades 1996
2 Mike Robinson Bedford, NH G Boston Jr. Bruins 1997
3 Jack Jeffers Oakville, ON F Orangeville Flyers 1997
4 Quinn Preston Trenton, MI F Topeka Roadrunners 1997
5 Jacob Hamacher Corona, CA F Wilkes-Barre Scranton Knights 1997
6 Paul Maust Butler, PA F Wilkes-Barre Scranton Knights 1998
6 Austin Rueschhoff Wentzville, MO F Austin Bruins 1997
6 Erik Ullman Österhaninge, SWE D MODO Jr. 1997
6 Santeri Virtanen Kikkonummi, FIN F Turku 1999
7 Michael Merulla Kennett Square, PA F Aston Rebels 1996
8 Veli-Matti Tiuraniemi Pietarsaari, FIN D Karpat U20 1997
9 Regen Cavanagh Chesapeake, VA F Corpus Christi Ice Rays 1997
10 Ben Thomas Ashburnham, MA F Winchendon School 1999
11 Jeff Baum Colleyville, TX D Wichita Falls Wildcats 1996
12 Thomas Keane Homer Glen, IL D Kenai River Brown Bears 1997
13 Brendan White Medford, MA F Williston-Northampton School 1998
14 David Brumm Maple Grove, MN F Vancouver Giants 1997
15 Brendan Bushy Thief River Falls, MN D Thief River Falls HS 1998
16 Levi Stauber Duluth, MN F Duluth Marshall School 2000
17 Max Salpeter St. Albert, AB D Camrose Kodiaks 1998
18 Lukas Wernblom Örnsköldsvik, SWE F MODO Jr. 2000
19 Chase Olsen Olds, AB F Olds Grizzlys 1997
20 James Crossman Cherry Hills, CO D Rocky Mountain Roughriders 1998