#NCDCAwards: South Shore Kings’ Salvatore Cerrato Named New England Division 2023-24 Defenseman Of The Year

By Joshua Boyd / NCDCHockey.com 


The National Collegiate Development Conference is proud to announce that South Shore Kings Defenseman Salvatore Cerrato has been named the New England Division 2023-24 Defenseman Of The Year. 

Cerrato, an ‘04 from St. Louis, Mo., originally joined the Kings coming out of the Fredrick Gunn School. He was one of three players joining together, along with Co-Captains Nathan Stachowiak and Aiden Lindley, all in 2022-23. A fast-developing Tier II defenseman last year, he became a true leader this year, putting up 44 points in 50 games during the 2023-24 regular season. He was second among defensemen in league scoring and also second in assists with 37. 

Of course, offensive numbers never tell the full story of a defenseman’s value to a team. He led the way in takeaways with 621, and he also led the Kings in average ice time with 21:48 this year. He was a +30, which was good for second on the Kings. Additionally, no other King had more breakouts (341) or offensive zone entries (365) this year than Cerrato. 

“I am very honored to receive this award,” said Cerrato, in an e-mailed statement. “I would like to thank my parents for trusting my process and always believing in me along the way. I also want to thank my coaches for giving me all the opportunities I’ve received to prove myself as a player. As well as teammates, and friends for pushing me along my journey to become the player I am today.”

“I couldn’t be happier for Sal. This award is very deserving,” said Kings Head Coach Tyler Holske. “He is a big reason why our power play finished second overall in the entire league (26.5%). His defensive game also took a big step this season. He has a bright future ahead of him.”

The NCDC joins the South Shore Kings in congratulating Salvatore Cerrato for winning the Defenseman Of The Year. 


About The NCDC

The National Collegiate Development Conference (NCDC) was founded in 2017 as the Tuition-Free Tier II conference of the United States Premier Hockey League, itself founded in 2012. The NCDC consists of 18 teams in three divisions, two on the Eastern Seaboard and one in the Rocky Mountain states of Colorado, Utah and Idaho.

The NCDC has sent more than 250 alumni to play NCAA Division I hockey, and more than 900 overall into NCAA college hockey. There were also more than 250 alumni in pro hockey around the world during the 2023-24 season. Former NCDC player Drew O’Connor has become a regular with the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins, Collin Graf recently signed and has played with the San Jose Sharks, and there have been seven players selected in the NHL Entry Draft from the NCDC.