Tag Archives: Penn State Hockey

Knights Tender, Alaska Oilers Forward Jeffrey Bertrand Commits To Penn State

The Knights would like to congratulate tendered forward Jeffrey Bertrand who has committed to Penn State University for the 2020-2021 season. The Anchorage, Alaska native has impressed through six games with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season, joining the team for games against Fairbanks, Kenai River, Johnstown and New Jersey.

“Jeffrey has been a steady player for us in the time we’ve been able to have him on our team,” said Knights head coach Tom Kowal. “He comes as advertised-he’s a strong, two-way player with a lot of size, speed and grit to his game and he’s applied that well in his brief time with us in the NAHL.”

When not with the Knights, Bertrand continues to develop his game with the Alaska Oilers U16 AAA program, having  recorded nine goals and 25 points in 29 games this season. Bertrand’s play both with the Oilers and in the NAHL have earned him recognition as one of top 2001-born prospects.

“We’re thrilled Jeffrey’s earned a commitment to Penn State, an elite college hockey program,” said Kowal. “Having seen his habits on and off the ice, along with his talent, it comes as no surprise. We are excited for his future there and within our own organization and we can’t wait for him to come aboard full-time.”

The Knights congratulate Jeffrey on his commitment and look forward to assisting his development as he moves forward with his hockey career!


Knights Alumni Khristian Acosta and Paul DeNaples Sign Letters of Intent

Congrats to Knights alumni Khristian Acosta and Paul DeNaples on signing their letters of intent today. Starting next season, Acosta will play for UMass Hockey while DeNaples will skate for Penn State Men’s Hockey.

Former Knight Denis Smirnov Drafted by Colorado Avalanche in 2017 NHL Draft

Photo Credit: Craig Houtz

Denis Smirnov rise in the hockey world continues. After a prolific freshman year at Penn State, Smirnov heard his name called by the Colorado Avalanche on day two of the 2017 NHL Draft.

The skilled forward played two seasons with the Knights between 2011-2013. A 2016-17 commitment to Penn State, Smirnov joined the Nittany Lions last season where he went on to lead the team, and the nation’s freshmen with 19 goals and 47 points in 39 games. Smirnov’s efforts earned him Penn State’s MVP and Freshman of the Year awards, and ultimately the attention of NHL scouts.

Taken by Colorado in the 6th round with the 156th overall pick, Smirnov’s selection now marks four consecutive years in which a Knights alumni has been taken in the NHL Draft.

Smirnov is the sixth Knight to be drafted, following CJ Yakimowicz (2014-6th  round, St. Louis Blues), Ivan Provorov (2015-1st round, Philadelphia Flyers), Daniel Sprong (2015-2nd Round, Pittsburgh Penguins), Nikita Pavlychev (2015-7th round, Pittsburgh Penguins), and Dmitri Zaitsev (2016-7th round, Washington Capitals).

The Knights are ecstatic for Denis and congratulate him on his well-deserved success. The entire organization is rooting for him as he continues his tremendous career!

Knights Alumni Denis Smirnov named Penn State MVP, Freshman of the Year

Photo/Craig Houtz

Once a regular at the Revolution Ice Centre, it wasn’t too long ago when it was a common sight for Denis Smirnov to be lighting the lamp for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights. For the 2011-2012 season, the skilled Russian forward averaged three points a game for the Knights AYBHL team, with a line of 39-37-76 in 25 games played. The following year he made the jump to the AYHL 16U Knights and scored 23 goals with 21 assists in 21 games played.

His scoring touch carried over to his USHL career in which he registered 62-80-142 in 160 games played over three full seasons. Now in the NCAA, Smirnov finished his freshman year by leading the Penn State Nittany Lions in total points with 47, assists with 28, and game-winning goals with four.

His 19-28-47 stat line has earned him the nod as the Lions MVP and team Freshman of the Year.  Those numbers placed him in a tie for 15th in the nation in division one scoring, and led all freshman in the country.

Smirnov has been a stellar player at every stop along the way in his young hockey career, and the Knights congratulate him on his well-deserved accolades. The organization will be among many rooting for him as he moves ahead toward a very bright future.

Knights Staff, Revolution Ice Centre Featured on CSN Philly’s Orange Line


The journey of Knights alumni Ivan Provorov (Philadelphia Flyers), Denis Smirnov (Penn State) and Nikita Pavlychev (Penn State) as told by John Boruk and CSN Philly with contributions from Knights coach Alex Vasko.