By Devin Jones
In the latest string of Ryerson athletes receiving national attention, three members of the Rams men’s hockey team attended separate NHL prospect camps this past weekend.
Rookie goaltender Taylor Dupuis joined the New York Rangers camp, while second year defenseman Alex Basso was named to the Washington Capitals prospect roster. Rounding out the trio, first year forward Chris Marchese suited up with for the Carolina Hurricanes over a three-day period.
In his rookie year with the Rams, Basso put up veteran level statistics, finishing fourth on the team in scoring with 27 points, 24 of which were assists. Basso’s 24 assists ranked him fourth in the Ontario University Athletic (OUA) and fifth all time for the Rams in a single season. His production earned him a spot on the OUA all-rookie team as well as named an OUA West First-Team All-star. Before Ryerson, Basso recorded 158 points throughout this career in the Ontario Hockey League playing for the Bellville Bulls, Sarnia Sting and the London Knights. Basso played for the Knights when they won their way into the 2014 memorial cup championship series.
“It [the camp] was a great experience, you learn how to be a professional. There’s a different pace to the game, everything’s a lot faster and there’s a lot of talented players so its good competition,” said Basso. “I haven’t played since February so it’s a tough adjustment, but it’s a good tune-up for the upcoming season and bringing that pro mentality back here is always a good thing.
Dupuis comes to the Rams off a three year stint with the in OHL playing for the Sting. During his time there, Dupuis racked up 3,232 saves in 110 games. In his last season with Sarnia, Dupuis won a career high 21 games while accumulating a save percentage of .894.
“Getting traded to Sarnia was probably the best thing that could have happened to me, we were a last place team but I got a lot of shots and opportunities to develop as a goalie,” said Dupuis. “Coming to Ryerson was a pretty easy decision. Graham Wise made his pitch and after see the facility and learning about the academic side of things, it was an easy choice to make.”
A Toronto native, Marchese finished off his OHL career last season with the Guelph Storm, where he notched four points in nine playoff games. Over his 186 games spent in the OHL playing for the Erie Otters, Windsor Spitfires and Guelph Storm, Marchese’s strongest offensive production came last season where he tallied 49 points in 49 games.
Ryerson has become a breeding ground for players looking to continue playing hockey after university, as this is the second year Rams players has been chosen to take part in NHL prospect camps. Last season forward Jamie Wise spent time with the Chicago Blackhawks while returning Rams defenseman Keevin Cutting attended the Florida Panthers camp.
“This speaks to coach Wise and the and the great job he’s able to do. The building attracts great players and the university’s academic reputation attracts great players,” said Ryerson athletic director Ivan Joseph. “When you come here your dreams don’t die just because you’ve changed directions.”