Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Union's Hatch inked to AHL deal

The Lehigh Valley/Adirondack Phantoms continue to be an ongoing experiment in stocking a roster with a glut of college talent.

Per Ken Schott, the Philadelphia Flyers have signed forward Matt Hatch -- late of the national-champion Union Flying Dutchmen -- to an American Hockey League contract.

Hatch completed his senior season by recording a personal bests of 13 goals and 22 points in 42 contests. One of the players who engineered the program's swift rise to prominence under Rick Bennett, the 24-year-old native of upstate New York completed his college career with 35 goals and 39 assists over 147 appearances.

Hatch's most productive game of the NCAA tournament was a two-goal effort in Union's opener, a 5-2 decision over Hockey East's Vermont.

“I’m really very excited to get going and being a part of a world-class organization," Hatch stated to the Daily Gazette.

As of this moment, the nomadic spectres feature a staggering 14 players on the roster with decent experience at the American Division I level, including, of course, Hatch's former teammate and Flyers' draft choice, defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere. At the end of the past season, each Adirondack's four goaltenders (Yann Danis, Matt Weninger, Carsen Chubak and Tony Capobianco) arrived via the college route.

At 5-foot-11, 185 pounds, Hatch is nothing more than a line filler. He'll need a major leap forward in size, weight and skill set, plus a rash of injuries at Philadelphia, to have a shot at making the big club after a year or two.

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