Spitznagel, Fischer among top prospects at BioSteel Boys 17 National Festival

Six players from last season’s HoneyBaked 16U squad set to play for Michigan District team in summer showcase

Craig Peterson

June 22, 2023


More than 200 prospects from the 2006 birth year are set to compete in the 2023 BioSteel Boys 17 National Festival in Amherst, New York, this weekend. Each of the 12 USA Hockey districts have fielded rosters to compete in this 12-team showcase. Representing the Michigan District are 18 individuals from HoneyBaked, Little Caesars and Compuware. None, however, come into the weekend with more of a resume than HoneyBaked’s Teddy Spitznagel and Compuware’s Lukas Fischer.

The forward-defenseman tandem both drew junior hockey experience this past season. There’s only 33 other participants in the entire showcase this weekend with similar achievements on their resumes thus far. Spitznagel played 24 games in the USHL while Fischer played 63 games in the OHL. Additionally, Spitznagel announced his commitment to the University of Michigan last September.

Having an elite-level talent both up front and on the back end is a good starting point for the Michigan District as far as competing in the festival is concerned. While there’s a team component to the event, it is very much an individual evaluation process. Participating players are being considered for the 24-man Team USA roster at the 2023 Hlinka-Gretzky Cup in August. Thirty-nine 2005-born players were invited to attend the main camp last July. A similar amount of invitees should be expected coming out of this weekend as well. 

HoneyBaked, Little Caesars, Compuware account for 17-of-18 Michigan District roster spots

Fischer’s 16U Compuware teammate Michael Barron spent three weeks with the Dubuque Saints in the USHL as well. Him, Fischer, Cam Springer, Eric Palmer, Luke Osburn and Drake Scorzo all played for the No. 4-ranked team in the country last season. Similarly, Spitznagel was one of six players from HoneyBaked’s 16U roster to be selected to represent the Michigan District. Fellow forwards Brendan Tighe and Caden Bell, along with defensemen Garrett Frazer and Jason Davenport will be in New York this weekend. Sebastian Gatto is one of two goalies to be selected for Michigan as well. 

The other goaltender in the mix is Little Caesars’ Owen Lepak. Him and four of his teammates from No. 8 Little Caesars accounts for the rest of the roster. Top scorers Brecken Smith and Easton Jacobs were point-per-game forwards this past season. They helped Caesars qualify for USA Hockey Nationals in April. Forwards Ryan Ickes and Darian Anderson join the fray as well. 

Players from Fox Motors, Belle Tire, Victory Honda, Oakland Jr. Grizzlies, Biggby and high school hockey were not among those selected to represent the Michigan District. LukeJanviriya — Bloomfield Hills native — was the only outlier in the group. He played for the North Jersey Avalanche last season after playing for HB the previous three seasons.

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