Quinnipiac men's ice hockey incoming freshmen Connor Clifton (Matawan, N.J.) and Peter Quenneville (Edmonton, Alberta) were selected in the 2013 NHL Draft on Sunday, June 30, 2013. Clifton was selected by the Phoenix Coyotes with the 12th pick of the 5th Round (133, overall) while Quenneville was taken by the Columbus Blue Jackets with the 14th pick of the 7th Round (195, overall).
This marks the first year for Quinnipiac to have two incoming players taken in the same draft. Current Bobcats Matthew Peca (Petawawa, Ontario), Kellen Jones (Montrose, British Columbia) and Jordan Samuels-Thomas (West Hartford, Conn.) were previously selected. Peca was picked in the seventh round of the 2011 draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning while Jones went in the 2010 draft to the Edmonton Oilers. Samuels-Thomas was chosen in the 2009 draft by the Atlanta Thrashers, now the Winnipeg Jets.
Additionally, Clifton and Quenneville were part of a group of eight student-athletes tabbed to play for ECAC Hockey teams next season. Harvard and Quinnipiac were the only teams with multiple student-athletes selected while Brown, Clarkson, Colgate, Cornell and Yale each had one player picked.
Clifton is the first Quinnipiac freshman to join the Bobcats directly from the prestigious U.S. National Developmental Team. In 25 games with Team USA in 2012-13, Clifton scored three goals while assisting on six more and also posted a +11. Clifton joined Team USA after playing for the Jersey Hitmen of the Eastern Junior Hockey Leauge (EJHL). He also suited up for Team USA in the World U-18 Tournament where his lone goal came in the United States' final game against Canada. Clifton will join the Bobcats with his older brother, Tim.
A United States Hockey League All-League Second Team selection in 2012-13, Quenneville joins Quinnipiac after ranking among the USHL's goals and points leaders while a member of the Dubuque Fighting Saints. Quenneville ranked fifth in the league with 33 goals and eighth in total points with 70, while his 37 assists ranked 14th. Additionally, he was one of just five players in the USHL with 30 goals and 30 assists. In 63 games last season with Dubuque, Quenneville had six multiple-goal games and 19 multiple-point games. Additionally, Dubuque was 23-3-0 in games in which Quenneville scored a goal. In nine postseason games, Quenneville had six goals and three assists. Prior to suiting up for Dubuque, Quenneville played two seasons for the Sherwood Park Crusaders of the Alberta Junior Hockey League in 2010-11 and 2011-12. In 2011-12, he was named the AJHL Most Valuable Player after he scored 31 goals and assists on 50 more for 80 points in 53 games, finishing as the third highest scorer in the AJHL.
Quinnipiac prepares for the 2013-14 season after advancing to the 2013 NCAA National Championship Game for the first in program history. In 2012-13, the Bobcats won their first ECAC Hockey Regular-Season Championship before winning the first NCAA Tournament game in program history, capturing the NCAA Tournament East Regional Championship and advancing to the NCAA Frozen Four. The Bobcats finished the season as the National Runner-up, with a 30-8-5 record that featured a 17-2-3 mark in ECAC Hockey. Quinnipiac's 2012-13 season also featured the program's first time first No. 1 national ranking and a program-record 21-game unbeaten streak. In addition, Quinnipiac led the nation in scoring defense, penalty killing and overall winning percentage. The Bobcats also featured a Hobey Baker "Hat Trick" Finalist in Eric Hartzell, who went on to sign with the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Bobcat hockey upperclassmen will travel abroad for the first time in program history visiting Italy and Switzerland from Aug. 11-21. Quinnipiac fans can follow their favorite Bobcats on their European tour by visiting the Official Website of Quinnipiac Athletics, www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com, for daily updates from overseas.