GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- University of North Dakota head men's hockey coach Brad Berry announced today that that seven incoming freshmen and one junior have signed National Letters of Intent and will join his program in 2017-18.
North Dakota's incoming class includes forwards Collin Adams, Nicholas Jones, Jordan Kawaguchi and Grant Mismash, along with defensemen Gabe Bast, Matt Kiersted, and Josh Rieger, and goaltender Peter Thome.
2017-18 Incoming Freshmen (Alphabetical):
Name: Collin Adams
Hometown: Brighton, Mich.
Previous Team: Muskegon (USHL)
Drafted by the New York Islanders in the sixth round (170th overall) of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft … Spent the past two seasons with the USHL's Muskegon Lumberjacks and racked up 51 goals and 112 points in 116 career games … Had 24 goals and 51 points in 57 games with a plus-21 rating in 2016-17 … Earned USHL All-Rookie Team honors in 2015-16 season with 27 goals and 61 points in 59 games … Represented the United States at the 2016 World J A Challenge.
Name: Gabe Bast
Hometown: Red Deer, Alberta
Previous Team: Penticton (BCHL)
Spent the past three seasons with Penticton of the BCHL and led the Vees to league championships in 2014-15 and 2016-17 … Totaled 71 games in three years and collected 12 goals and 54 points … Was limited to just 22 games due to injuries over his final two seasons in Penticton … Had two goals and eight points in 14 regular-season games in 2016-17 and added six goals and 17 points in 21 playoff games … Those 17 playoff points led all BCHL defensemen … Had nine goals and 40 points in 49 games as a rookie in 2014-15 and was named to the BCHL All-Star Second Team.
Name: Nicholas Jones
Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta
Previous Team: Penticton (BCHL)
Will have two seasons of eligibility at UND after having played at Ohio State in 2014-15 (26 GP, 1-5—6) and 2015-16 (3 GP, 0-0—0) … Joined the Penticton Vees of the BCHL in 2015-16 and collected 21 goals and 63 points in 42 games … Added nine goals and seven assists in 42 playoff games … Served as Penticton's team captain in 2016-17 and led the Vees to a BCHL championship … Had 25 goals and a team-leading 62 points in 58 regular-season games … Added 10 goals and 27 points in 21 playoff games and ranked second in BCHL playoff scoring behind only fellow incoming freshman Jordan Kawaguchi.
Name: Jordan Kawaguchi
Hometown: Abbotsford, British Columbia
Previous Team: Chilliwack (BCHL)
Spent the past four seasons with the BCHL's Chilliwack Chiefs and amassed 120 goals and 242 points in 213 career games … A two-time BCHL All-Star, earning first-team honors last year and second-team accolades in 2015-16 … Served as team captain in both of those seasons … Led the Chiefs and ranked second in the BCHL in 2016-17 with 85 points in 55 games … Added a league-best 43 points in 23 playoff games … Also led Chilliwack in scoring in 2015-16 when he had 45 goals and 83 points in 56 games … Cousin of current NHL player Devin Setoguchi.
Name: Matt Kiersted
Hometown: Elk River, Minn.
Previous Team: Chicago (USHL)
Spent past two full seasons and parts of a third with USHL's Chicago Steel … Appeared in 23 games during 2016-17 season that was interrupted by injury … Had two goals and 14 points with a plus-10 rating in those 23 games … Had four goals and 19 assists in 57 games in 2015-16 … Represented the United States at the 2016 World J A Challenge.
Name: Grant Mismash
Hometown: Edina, Minn.
Previous Team: U.S. NTDP
Ranked 24th among North American skaters by the NHL Central Scouting Bureau for the 2017 NHL Entry Draft … Spent the past three years with the U.S. National Team Development Program … Tied for the team scoring lead last season with the U-18 team, collecting 26 goals and 61 points in 65 games … Had three goals and five assists in seven games and led the U.S. to a gold medal at the 2017 IIHF World U18 Championship … Had 23 goals and 44 points in 58 games with the USNTDP in 2015-16 … Scored two goals and three assists in five games at the 2016 IIHF World U17 Championship in Grand Forks and won a bronze medal.
Name: Josh Rieger
Hometown: Regina, Saskatchewan
Previous Team: Estevan (SJHL)
Spent the past three seasons with the SJHL's Estevan Bruins … Totaled 28 goals and 84 points in 170 career games with the Bruins … Appeared in 53 games in 2016-17 and ranked second among all SJHL defensemen in both points (41) and goals (13) … Was named the SJHL Viterra Division Player of the Year, Most Valuable Player and Top Defenseman … Also earned team MVP and top defenseman honors … Had 9-23—32 in 58 games in 2015-16 and 6-5—11 in 56 games in 2014-15.
Name: Peter Thome
Hometown: Minneapolis, Minn.
Previous Team: Waterloo (USHL)
Drafted by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the sixth round (155th overall) of the 2016 NHL Entry Draft … Split the 2016-17 season between the USHL's Waterloo Blackhawks (15 GP), Chicago Steel (5 GP) and Omaha Lancers (14 GP) … Finished the year with Waterloo and went 11-4-0 … Went a combined 21-8-1 in 34 appearances with a 3.00 goals against average and .891 save percentage on the season … Appeared in 47 games with the NAHL's Aberdeen Wings in 2015-16 and tied for second in the league with a .929 save percentage … Cousin, Andrew Thome, pitched at UND from 2012-15 and currently plays professionally in the Houston Astros organization.