YOUNGSTOWN, OH - The Phantoms have announced the official signing of 2002 born forward Ben Schoen to a USHL tender. Schoen, a native of Maumee, Ohio near Toledo, is Youngstown’s first and only tender signing so far prior to the USHL Phase I Draft on May 7th.
“I am proud and very excited to sign a tender with the Youngstown Phantoms and be able to choose my USHL team for my future and college development. This is a great fit for me to be able to hone my skills and help the Phantoms win a USHL championship. I’m looking forward to working with Coach Patterson and Assistants Jeff Potter and Nick Peruzzi on the ice every day and can’t wait to get started this off-season leading into training camp,” Schoen said.
Schoen is currently a high school freshman and spent this past season as part of the very successful Detroit Little Caesars U15 AAA program. In 67 games this season with Little Caesars, Schoen produced 78 points (37G – 41A) to go along with 75 penalty minutes. This season, his club was able to win the NHL Cup (U15 AAA) in Boston back in January, in March won the Michigan State Playoffs and District Championship for the U15 AAA level, and recently finished second overall in the United States at U15 AAA Nationals in early April. The 5’8, 150 pound right-shot forward is committed to the University of Miami-Ohio following his USHL career.
“Our staff has been able to track Ben and his progress going back to last summer at the Mid-Am District Camps and at the U15 USA Hockey Select Festival,” said Phantoms General Manager Jason Koehler. ”As we followed his season with Little Caesars this year in multiple viewings, Ben continued to be an elite level scoring threat at his age group and level and every time we watched and was one of, if not the best player on the ice. We see a young man that plays the game the right way, has a very high skill set and scoring ability, has outstanding hockey IQ and playmaking ability, and we see him as having a chance to become one of the best forwards in the USHL over the next few seasons as his focus and drive is very mature for someone his age. Ben comes in next season as a high school sophomore and after meeting him and his family and having him skate and visit with us last month – we knew this would be a great fit with Ben’s talent and energy and also his family’s support close by as he develops and gets ready for college hockey at Miami University.”
With the signing of Ben Schoen, the Phantoms will be forfeiting their first round pick in the 2018 USHL Phase 1 Draft on May 7th.
“Ben possesses an elite skill set and hockey IQ and as a result not only is he a great player, he makes all players around him better. He has an extremely bright future and we are ecstatic that he has chosen to become a Phantom, “ said Phantoms’ Head Coach Brad Patterson.
Schoen is just the eighth player to sign a USHL tender in Phantoms’ team history. The first year tenders were available to USHL clubs to sign players - 2015 first round NHL draft pick Kyle Connor (1996 born and now with the NHL’s Winnipeg Jets) became Youngstown’s first tender back in 2012, along with JJ Piccinich (1996), who was also a fourth round NHL Draft pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2014. Youngstown tendered one player each back in 2014 and 2015 - defenseman Ty Farmer (1998) and forward Jacob Tortora (1999). The club signed two players in 2016, adding current forwards Curtis Hall and Max Elllis (both 2000 borns), and last season signed current forward Trevor Kuntar (2001).
United States Hockey League teams are allowed to add, or “tender”, up to two players that are eligible for Phase I of the upcoming USHL draft to their roster, prior to the draft. If a team decides to use one of their tenders on a player, that team forfeits one or both of their first two round draft selections.