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November 22, 2011 - 12:03pm

Berenson signs six to next season's freshman class


Just as Michigan hockey coach Red Berenson has started to learn how talented his freshman class is, he announced the signing of another impressive group.

“We’re looking forward to what these players will bring to the Michigan hockey program,” Berenson said in an Athletic Department release of the six skaters who signed National Letters of Intent for the 2012-13 season.

Half of the class is composed of forwards. Cristoval Nieves (Rochester, N.Y.), Daniel Milne (Unionville, Ontario) and Justin Selman (Upper Saddle River, N.J.) will have to help replace the high-octane scoring power of senior forwards Luke Glendening and David Wohlberg. Milne currently plays junior hockey in Ontario, while Selman skates with the Sioux Falls Stampede of the USHL.

On defense, Berenson knows firsthand the ability of the players he has coming in. Defensemen Connor Carrick and Jacob Trouba both got their first taste of the Yost Ice Arena environment when Michigan scrimmaged the United States National Development Programs’ under-18 team, based in Ann Arbor, in October. Many current Wolverines attest that the USNTDP experience is invaluable.

The biggest hole left to be filled after this season will be opened with the loss of fifth-year senior netminder Shawn Hunwick. To mitigate his absence, Berenson inked a goaltender — Jared Rutledge.

Rutledge also plays for the USNTDP and is a native of Chicago. Whether he or sophomore Adam Janecyk emerges as Hunwick’s successor between the pipes remains to be seen.

“Each player will bring his own unique skill set to our team and will provide us with a talented and well-balanced freshman class heading into next season,” Berenson said.