As the Soo Greyhounds seek to fill the roster spot of 1999 birth-year goalie Matthew Villalta — he is expected to turn pro within the National Hockey League farm system of the Los Angeles Kings — there are a number of newcomers in the mix ahead of the 2019-2020 Ontario Hockey League season.
During this off-season, the Soo traded for overage goalie Christian Propp, getting him from the North Bay Battalion.
And since the end of the 2018-2019 campaign, the Greyhounds have added Noah Zeppa via the under-18 draft and Nick Malik by way of the import draft. Both goalies have 2002 birth dates.
But while a Sault Ste. Marie media outlet has been pumping up both Propp and Malik in a big way, little mention has been made of Zeppa who, simply put, was the most valuable player in the Great North Midget Hockey League in 2018-2019 despite playing for a Soo team that won only 12 of 36 games.
Zeppa may or may not be a year away from possibly playing in the OHL. But let us not forget that he showed well at the Greyhounds evaluation camp in the spring and will be given every opportunity to show what he can do at main camp in the late summer.
Meanwhile, the Greyhounds do have a holdover in 2001 birth year backstop Ethan Taylor. Taylor was Villalta’s little-used backup in 2018-2019.
PHOTO: Local product Noah Zeppa is an OHL under-18 draft pick of the Soo Greyhounds.