Ottawa Senators Prospect Update and Belleville Recap - February 21st

New week, same standouts (mostly)

Ottawa Senators Prospect Update and Belleville Recap - February 21st

Prospect Team of the Week


I can't really overstate the importance of Stephen Halliday to the Ottawa Senators' prospect pool at this point. And that's not to say that I expect Halliday to reach star status or anything. But among forward prospects not playing at the professional level in North America, only Halliday and Owen Beckner have made any noise this season in the Sens system. Anyway, Halliday added another goal and assist this past weekend and at age-21, I once again feel compelled to mention that Halliday should join the BSens as soon as this spring.

Buckeyes Win Overtime Thriller vs. No. 4 Badgers - Ohio State
The Ohio State men’s hockey team came from behind to down No. 4 Wisconsin in overtime, 3-2, Friday in Value City Arena.

Contrary to the sub-header, I did get to include a couple of new names this week. And for those of us who have followed the Sens farm system for the past few years, it feels overdue to include Zack Ostapchuk in this section. Late in his WHL career, Ostapchuk got a lot of attention in these writeups but like a lot of players, he faced an adjustment period graduating to the professional game. Let's hope this past week sets the tone for the rest of the season as Ostapchuk absolutely went off for three goals. He played streaky in junior too so just enjoy the ride, I guess?

With Roby Järventie injured and Egor Sokolov snake-bitten, Angus Crookshank has all but sewn up his case as Belleville's MVP this season (among forwards at the very least). In Belleville, they can basically set their watches to Crookshank at this point as he added another two goals, three assists, and ten shots for the BSens who still sit within striking distance of a playoff berth.


Ottawa's top pick (108th overall) from the 2023 draft, Hoyt Stanley put together a multi-point week with a goal and an assist for Cornell as they continue to roll through the ECAC. Stanley definitely went under the radar as he missed time due to injury and struggled to establish his place early on but may have turned a corner as he has six points in his last eleven games and just logged his second four-shot game of the season. You can literally never have enough big, right shot defenders in the system.

On top of getting his first NHL call-up of the season, Maxence Guenette kept chugging along once again in Belleville. Guenette had an assist in each of his three games for the BSens as he continues to anchor Belleville's blueline and make us wonder why Travis Hamonic is still a thing.

‘Be solid defensively’: Senators’ Max Guenette on his gameplan and excitement after being called up


Albeit with a modest save percentage just under 89, Kevin Reidler won both of his games for Dubuque this past week putting him on the cusp of the 20-win mark in his first North American season. While Ottawa's prospects currently in the AHL will naturally get the most attention, I've certainly enjoyed tracking the trajectories of Reidler and Vladimir Nikitin since they came over from Europe. Neither one has necessarily set the world on fire by save percentage but as I recall, we saw a similar learning curve for the goaltenders now established in Belleville.

Belleville Update

It was an up and down weekend for the Belleville Senators, as they went 1-2-0 in a rare three game weekend.

Things started out well, as Belleville opened the weekend against Toronto with an early 2-0 lead courtesy of Tyler Kleven and Rourke Chartier. Unfortunately, that two goal lead didn't even last the period, as Toronto scored three unanswered before the first intermission to take a 3-2 lead. AHL All-Star Angus Crookshank did even things up partway through the third but that deadlock didn't last long, as the Marlies would score their game winner just a few minutes later.

Saturday, Belleville headed to Utica for a date with the basement dwelling Comets. While they aren't in an enviably position in the North Division, Utica is only a few points behind Belleville so this was a game they absolutely could not lose. And, fortunately, they didn't. While the Comets did open the scoring, Belleville scored three consecutive goals to take a 3-1 lead in their eventual 3-2 victory.

Finally, on Family Day (or President's Day, depending on your location), Belleville took on the defending Calder Cup Champions. It was a close battle on the scoresheet but Belleville was unable to overcome the three goal deficit they found themselves in halfway through the game.

Standing out this weekend was Angus Crookshank, Rourke Chartier and Egor Sokolov. Particularly, it should be noted that Chartier has five points in his current six game stint with Ottawa's AHL affiliate. He's understandably playing big minutes for Head Coach Dave Bell.

Mads Søgaard got two of the starts, posting a .938 followed by an .846 in a rollercoaster of a weekend while Kevin Mandolese only managed an .892. A tale familiar to Sens fans across the board, when goaltending isn't in tip top form, this team struggles to post consistent wins.

There's just a seven point difference between last (Utica) and third (Rochester) in the North Division right now, so playoff spots are still very much up for grabs. For Belleville, some wins against Rochester (x2) and Syracuse this week would go a long way to ensuring they stay in the thick of the race.



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