For the first time in program history, two incoming Quinnipiac hockey players have been selected in the same NHL draft. With the 12th pick in the fifth round of the 2013 NHL Draft (133rd pick overall), the Phoenix Coyotes selected Connor Clifton. The Columbus Blue Jackets used their 7th round pick, the 195th overall, to draft Peter Quenneville.
Clifton, from Matawan, N.J., is a defenseman who recently played with the U.S. National Developmental Team. In 25 games with the developmental team, Clifton netted three goals with six assists and a +11 rating. After his time with the developmental team, Clifton suited up in 66 games for the U.S. National Under 18 Team. Clifton scored eight goals and assisted in 14 while on the U-18 team.
While Clifton isn’t the biggest guy, measuring in at 5-foot-11 and 171 pounds, he appears to be a bit feisty. He had 90 penalty minutes over 25 games with the developmental team, meaning he averaged nearly two minors per game. Clifton settled down some during his stint on the National Under 18 Team. In his 66 games with the team Clifton spent 128 minutes in the box, an average of about one minor per game.
The Bobcats’ other player drafted, Peter Quenneville, comes from a hockey-oriented family. If the his last name sounds familiar to you, it probably should. Peter Quenneville is a cousin of Joel Quenneville, the coach of the 2013 Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks. Before going moving on to coaching, Joel Quenneville spent some time in Connecticut, playing for the Hartford Whalers from 1983 to 1990.
Peter Quenneville, a forward from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, last played for the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the United States Hockey League. With the Fighting Saints and his other past teams Quenneville has been an offensive machine. He had more points, 70, with the Fighting Saints than games he played with them, 63. Those 70 points break down into 33 goals and 37 assists and a +29 rating.
While Clifton racks up penalty minutes, Quenneville is much cleaner on the ice. During his 63 games with the Fighting Saints, Quenneville only sat in the penalty box for 18 minutes.
Though the two were selected by NHL organizations, expect to see them suited up in Hamden next year. Neither one was picked high enough in the draft to skip out on school and head straight into their organization.