WALTHAM, Mass. – The Bentley University hockey team will welcome in nine freshmen to the program for the 2017-18 season. The class consists of five forwards and four defensemen, from five different junior leagues and the prep ranks across North America.
Four of the incoming student-athletes played juniors in the BCHL, and one each came from the USHL, NAHL, AJHL, CCHL and the prep school ranks. Additionally, four hail from the state of Massachusetts.
The five forwards are Michael Boyle (Phoenix, Arizona/Dubuque-USHL), Brendan Hamblet (Hopkinton, Mass./The Rivers School), Brett Mennear (West Kelowna, B.C./Prince George-BCHL), Luke Santerno (Smithers, B.C./Trail-BCHL) and Michael Zuffante (Bloomingdale, Ill./Minnesota-NAHL).
The four defensemen are David Giunta (Lynnfield, Mass./Coquitlam-BCHL), Matthew Lombardozzi (Leominster, Mass./Carelton Place-CCHL), Charlie Marchand (Calgary, Alberta/Brooks-AJHL) and Nick Rutigliano (Shrewsbury, Mass./West Kelowna, BCHL).
- Michael Boyle (F, Dubuque-USHL): Played two seasons in the USHL, and was named to the 2015 USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game. In 57 games for Dubuque last season, had five goals and six assists for 11 points. Played for Sioux City in the USHL in 2015-16.
- David Giunta (D, Coquitlam-BCHL): In 51 games for the Express last season, his only season of junior hockey, led in the team in scoring among defensemen with 21 points on four goals and 17 assists. Played prep hockey with Belmont Hill.
- Brendan Hamblet (F,The Rivers School-Prep): Put up big numbers in his career at Rivers. Scored 29 goals and notched 38 assists for 67 points over the last two seasons, including a 15-25-40 scoring line last season. Also played with the Cape Cod Whalers U18 last season.
- Matthew Lombardozzi (D, Carleton Place-CCHL): Played two seasons with Carleton Place in the CCHL. Helped the Canadians win the last two CCHL titles, including as an assistant captain last season. In 62 regular season games, had six goals and 16 assists. In 2015-16, played in 62 regular games with an 8-12-20 scoring line, with five power play goals.
- Charlie Marchand (D, Brooks-AJHL): Helped the Bandits win the last two AJHL titles. In 60 regular season games last season, had 23 assists. Put up even bigger numbers in 2015-16 in just 49 games, with five goals and 26 assists.
- Brett Mennear (F, Prince Geroge-BCHL): Had a huge 2016-17 season with Prince George, where he was T-2nd in the BCHL in assists (54) and 4th in points (79). Added 25 goals scored. Named a 2nd team BCHL All-Star. Played the previous three seasons with West Kelowna in the BCHL, where he helped them claim both the 2016 league title and Royal Bank Cup as Canadian Junior champions.
- Nick Rutigliano (D, West Kelowna-BCHL): Played three seasons with the West Kelowna program in the BCHL, which has produced former Bentley captains Max French and Alex Grieve. Was team captain of the Warriors in 2016-17. Helped the Warriors win both the 2016 BCHL title and Royal Bank Cup as Canadian Junior champions.
- Luke Santerno (F, Trail-BCHL): One of the top goal scorers in the BCHL last season. Ranked 6th with 33 goals tallied. Also had the 15th most points in the league with 64. Played the previous two seasons in the BCHL with Cowichan.
- Michael Zuffante (F, Minnesota-NAHL): Had an impressive first full season of junior hockey with the Minnesota Wilderness. Led the team in points with 48, on 18 goals and 30 assists. Finished the season with Waterloo in the USHL.