The rosters for the 2019 NHL/USHL Top Prospects game were released earlier this morning and the Central Illinois Flying Aces will match their franchise record by sending three players to represent the Eastern Conference in Lincoln, Nebraska on Tuesday, January 8th. Among these representatives are Aces captain Trevor Janicke, forward Lynden Breen, and defenseman Ryan Siedem. This news comes just a few weeks after the announcement of Janicke and alternate captain Cal Kiefiuk being named to Team USA in the 2018 World Junior A Challenge.
Janicke will be eligible for the 2019 NHL Entry Draft and is committed to play for the University of Notre Dame. He is included on NHL Central Scouting’s ranking of the top prospects for the upcoming draft. Trevor currently leads the Flying Aces with twenty-two points (7 G,15 A) through the team’s first twenty-four games.
Lynden Breen is currently in his first full season with Central Illinois after briefly being exposed to the league towards the end of the 2017-2018 campaign. Breen currently ranks fifth among all USHL rookies in points scored with eight goals and ten assists totaling to eighteen points scored so far in his 2018-2019 season.
Regarding the selection, General Manager and Head Coach of the Aces Mike Watt responded, “It’s a great honor for Trevor, Ryan, and Lynden and very well deserved. With Trevor and Lynden being ranked by Central Scouting, Trevor also being selected to the Team USA World Junior A Challenge team, and the amount of success Lynden is having as a first year player in the league, it speaks to the caliber of players they are."
Ryan Siedem, along with Janicke, has ties to Team USA where he skated in sixty-one games for the U.S. National Under-17 Team prior to his time with the Flying Aces. Siedem currently ranks third among all USHL defensemen with seventeen points.
Watt would go on to add, “Ryan was voted on by other management in the Eastern Conference which is impressive and his play is deserving of it. He leads many categories for defenseman and plays lots of minutes for us. The biggest compliment to all three, is that they play a two hundred foot game and play in all situations for us. They're not looked at as one dimensional hockey players. We are very excited and proud of them."
All three players are currently competing in their first full season with a USHL club. These selections speak highly to the team’s recent success as this total matches the highest number of players the Aces’ organization has ever sent to the Top Prospects game. This was previously achieved in 2018 when the Aces sent Michael Callahan, Tyler Madden, and goaltender Zach Stejskal to Kearney, Nebraska to represent the Eastern Conference.
The game will begin at 7:05 p.m. in Lincoln, Nebraska on January 8th and will be available for streaming on HockeyTV.