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Wildcats acquire 1st round pick to kick off 2022 draft

The Moncton Wildcats added 14 new players to the organization in the 2022 QMJHL Entry Draft, which wrapped up Tuesday.

Nine forwards, three defencemen and two goaltenders were selected. Eleven players were born in 2006.

Moncton’s first pick came during Monday’s first round.

The Wildcats acquired the 14th overall pick from the Shawinigan Cataractes in exchange for prospect Eli Baillergeon, and selections in the second (22nd overall) and third (43rd overall) rounds.

Moncton then chose defenceman Adam Fortier-Gendron from the College Esther-Blondin Phénix of the Ligue de développement de hockey M18 AAA du Québec (LHM18AAAQ).

Fortier-Gendron, from Repentigny, Québec, had five goals and 23 points in 37 games for the Phénix. Listed at 5’10” and 189 lbs., he was ranked sixth by QMJHL Central Scouting on its season-ending list of draft prospects.

draft-recap-2022

With their first pick on Tuesday, the Wildcats selected forward Gabe Smith from Rothesay Netherwood School in the second round, 25th overall. Listed at 6’3” and 178 lbs., the St. Andrews, N.B., native recorded four goals and 20 points in 20 games at RNS.

Moncton used a third-round pick (53rd overall) to add Sélects du Nord U17 right winger Sidney Deslauriers. The native of Mont-Tremblant, Québec, is 5’9.5” and 163 lbs. He had 17 goals and 31 points in 27 games and added three points in ten games with the Saint-Eustache Vikings (LHM18AAAQ).

Ten selections later, the Wildcats nabbed right winger Vincent Légaré of the Séminaire Saint-Francois Blizzard (LHM18AAAQ) in the fourth round, 63rd overall. Listed at 6’0.5” and 175 lbs., the native of Lac-Beauport, Québec, registered five goals and 14 points in 37 games for the Blizzard.

Moncton made its only trade of the day in the fifth round, acquiring the 86th overall pick from the Gatineau Olympiques in exchange for defenceman Charles-Antoine Pilote. The Wildcats then chose goaltender Eli James from the Weeks U18 Majors of the Nova Scotia U18 Major Hockey League (NSU18MHL). James, 5’10” and 175 lbs., played 19 games last season.

The Wildcats snagged right winger Gavin Cornforth from Thayer Academy in Massachusetts in the sixth round, 107th overall. Listed at 5’7.75” and 141 lbs., the Boston-native totalled 12 goals and 30 points in 22 games.

Moncton returned to Atlantic Canada for the seventh round, picking forward Riley Sampson from the Cape Breton West Islanders (NSU18MHL). Sampson, from Havre Boucher, N.S., is listed at 6’1.5” and 170 lbs. He posted ten goals and 20 points in 37 games for the Islanders last year.

There were two picks in the eighth round.

Forward Néka Jean was taken 133rd overall from the Mount Academy Saints U16 school program in Prince Edward Island. Jean is a Moncton-native but lives in Tampa, Florida, for much of the year. Listed at 5’8” and 130 lbs., he had three goals and nine points in 18 games. He is the son of former Wildcats goaltending coach Frantz Jean.

The Wildcats added their second defenceman of the draft with the next pick, 134th overall, by selecting Mauricie Estacades M17 Espoir blueliner Nathan Dubreuil. The native of St-Narcisse, Québec, listed at 5’10” and 144 lbs., posted three goals and 19 points in 26 games. He also played four games for the Trois-Rivières Estacades (LHM18AAAQ).

In the ninth round, the Wildcats picked the first of three 2005-born prospects in left winger Quincy Supprien. The 5’11”, 154-lb. product of Repentigny, Québec, earned three goals and eight points in 19 games split between the College Esther-Blondin Phénix and Gatineau L’Intrépide (LHM18AAAQ). He also chipped in four points in six games with the Lanaudière Pioneers M17 Espoir program.

Left winger Justin Dumais joined Moncton in the eleventh round, 187th overall, from Bishop Kearney Selects 15s prep school in Rochester, New York. The Montréal native, listed at 5’9” and 147 lbs., had 21 goals and 58 points in 79 games last season.

The Wildcats’ 12th-round pick netted defenceman Francesco Pulice from Laval/Montréal Rousseau Royal M17 Espoir. Listed at 5’8.5” and 186 lbs., the native of Montreal had one goal and seven points in 27 games. He also played four games for Laval Montréal Rousseau Royal (LHM18AAAQ).

Richelieu Gaulois M17 Espoir goaltender Anthony LeBlanc came with the Wildcats’ second-last selection, 223rd overall. Leblanc, who turns 17 in December, is listed at 5’10.25” and 194 lbs. He went 7-2-1 in 14 games last season.

Moncton stayed local with its final pick, grabbing forward and Dieppe-native Cooper Cormier in the 14th round (241st overall). Listed at 6’0” and 197 lbs., Cormier, who turns 17 in August, had six goals and 13 points in 30 games for the Moncton Flyers of the New Brunswick/Prince Edward Island Major U18 Hockey League (NBPEIM18HL).

The Wildcats also added two players in the 2022 QMJHL U.S. Draft: left winger Cole Eiserman (7th overall) of the Shattuck-St. Mary’s Sabres prep school program and defenceman Caeden Herrington (25th overall) from the Elite Hockey Academy 15s in Connecticut.

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