NCDC Players Of The Week: Nov. 15, 2022

Games of Nov. 8-13


South Division 

Forward: Frank Jirak, Mercer Chiefs

Jirak (‘03/Glenolden, Pa.) scored his first NCDC hat trick on Nov. 11, in one of the Chiefs’ two wins against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights. A USPHL Premier All-Star last year, Jirak is a living, breathing, skating example of #USPHLAdvancement In Action. In addition to his first junior hat trick, he scored a goal and added one assist the next night for a 4-1-5 line over his last four games, helping the Chiefs to second place in the entire NCDC. 


Defense: Trevor Davis, Mercer Chiefs

Davis (‘02/Byron Center, Mich.) is having a heck of a first NCDC season, tying for the team lead in scoring through 21 games, posting 17 points to tie with Forward of the Week Frank Jirak. Recently, Davis put up a goal and an assist during the three-game series against the WBS Knights. He is regularly the team’s breakout leader, taking the puck out of their end 19 times this past weekend. 


Goaltender: Andrew Palena, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights

Another fantastic first-year NCDC player, the ‘03 from Trinity, Fla., joined the Knights from the Salisbury School, though he has prior USPHL experience with the Skipjacks Hockey Club 16U team. Recently, Palena helped the Knights break through to the win column in a three-game weekend against their fellow first-year NCDC organization the Mercer Chiefs. He stopped 30 of 32 shots in 65 minutes and then all three Chiefs shootout attempts to help his team to the Sunday morning win. 


North Division 

Forward: Trace Norwell, Twin City Thunder 

The second-year Thunder Norwell (‘02/Erie, Colo.) picked up a goal and two assists for three points in a pair of wins against the Boston Junior Bruins. Along with helping his Thunder move up into third place in a tight North Division, he also brought his points per game this year even to one through 18 games. Those 18 points also combine with 32 from last year for 50 in his 66-game career, putting him into a tie for third on the Thunder’s all-time scoring leaderboard. 


Defense: Fabrizio Mazzarelli, South Shore Kings

The first-year NCDC blueliner Mazzarelli joined the Kings in October and has immediately found a home in their top four. The ‘03 from Penn Valley, Pa., was a +4 with assists in each of the Kings’ two wins this past week against the New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs and Boston Advantage. Overall, in eight games, he has five assists – including an active three-game assist streak of three helpers. 


Goaltender: Christopher Jackson, Twin City Thunder 

The Thunder went 2-0 recently and Jackson (‘02/Charles Town, W.V.) played a huge part in both victories. Overall, he faced 87 shots from the Boston Junior Bruins and stopped 83 of these for a .954 save percentage on the weekend. His 2.17 goals against average ranks fifth in the league and his .933 is at sixth overall.