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Team Michigan seniors win prestigious CCM NIT Tournament

By MAHA Staff, 04/23/23, 9:00PM EDT


North Dakota won the last two.

This time, the Michigan boys were victorious.

In Sunday’s championship game of the 2023 CCM NIT Tournament in Minnesota, the Team Michigan seniors beat N.D. 5-2 to finish off a perfect week.

The seniors went 4-0 in the prestigious spring invitational tournament, which brings together top high school hockey talent from Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Wisconsin and Colorado. 

Michigan sends two teams to the tournament, a roster of seniors and a roster of juniors. The Team Michigan program is a joint initiative between MAHA and the high school hockey leadership; all of the participating players competed for MHSAA varsity hockey teams during the winter season. It is a tremendous opportunity for high school players looking to advance following their high school hockey careers, as it is a heavily-scouted event by college and junior programs. 

Second-period goals from Gaborik Carlson and Landon Stevens gave Team Michigan a commanding 4-1 lead in the final contest, after Braden Pietila and Camden Markham had scored in the first. Carlson provided the icing on the cake with an empty-netter while shorthanded in the closing moments of the contest.

Nick Kutriak picked up the win between the pipes for Team Michigan in the title game. He split time with Ryan Price; both netminders recorded a pair of wins while visiting Minnesota. 

Jack L’Esperance led the seniors in scoring with five goals and two assists for seven points in four games. Markham had four points in the four contests, while Pietila, Carlson, Stevens and Logan Nickolaus all had three.

The seniors were coached by Northville head coach Ryan Ossenmacher, Hartland head coach Rick Gadwa and Warren De La Salle head coach Sean Clark. 

The junior team, which plays in the same pool as the seniors, finished 1-3 in their trip to Minnesota. They recorded a 1-0 win over North Dakota for their lone victory, however. 

For more on the Team Michigan program and the other parts of MAHA's Player Selection Camps, check out the video below.