Tag: alicja Kobus

2021 Top 30 Women’s U20 Players. #15-11

After more delays, we are now into the top half of the rankings with our best 15 players. Some players in the top 15 definitely benefit from their reputation as their amount of games was limited. The next five players are a mix of players that have made big strides or taken a big fall in our rankings, along with one defender that continues to just miss out on making the top ten. We will also see our top-ranked goalie, a spot that was up for grabs after Sass aged out of the list. 

Players had to be under 20 on June 30th, 2021. We are only judging play that occurred before that date as well. Players are evaluated based on a combination of career history, current play, and potential. While most of the ranking is my opinion, numerous Polish hockey people contributed their thoughts on players. Ninety-five players were considered for the list and reviewed, and fifty players received a ranking. Players 50-31 will be revealed at the end of the series in the breakdown article. Only the top 30 players receive a report.

Players 30-21

Players 20-16

Rank – Player Name (Position), Age During Next Hockey Season, Team (Ranking in 2020, change in rankings)

15 – Katarzyna Zaborska (D), 19, Unia Oswiecim, (27, +12)

We finished the last article with two straight Oscwiecim players and open the list with one to make it three straight. Zaborska makes her biggest jump up the list in her final year in the rankings. The almost veteran of the PLHK at this point had a great season in the PLHK. The biggest reason for her large jump was she became a full-time member of Metropolis Katowice in the EWHL, playing 13 games. Zaborska was one of two U20 players to play in the EWHL for Poland this year. Clearly a sign of what the management and coaching staff think of her. She is definitely one to watch for senior national team games soon. 

14 – Karolina Baran, (F), 19, KS Cracovia 1906 (9, -5)

Baran drops in her final year on the list. The talented forward remains a big part of Poland’s future. This drop was more about a couple of new players receiving huge debut rankings versus her own play. The Debica native posted 25 points (13G-12A-25PTS) in 16 games, down two points from her 2020 total. Her regular season 20 points were tied for fourth in the PLHK B. I would imagine Baran has a chance to start vying for national team spots soon, but no chances have come in the EWHL. 

Baran goal vs. Oswiecim

13 – Alicja Kobus, (F), 17, PTH Kozice Poznan (18, +5)

Kobus climb up the rankings after posting 17 points in 12 regular-season games, and this was up from her last season in the PLHK A. Her 17 ponts were also sixth among all skaters in the PLHK B. Kobus would have made her third appearance for the U18 squad in 2021 if not for Covid. Kobus has performed exceptionally well at the B level but not as strong against Poland’s top teams, that should change as she continues to gain more experience. 

Kobus drop pass assist vs. Latvia

12 – Helena Grzybowska (G), 19, PTH Kozice Poznan (12, +6)

Grzybowska took a large fall in the rankings and only didn’t fall further due to it being a covid season. A break-out year in 2020 saw success in the EWHL, PLHK, Slovakia’s top league, and, of course, on the international stage. It was the kind of performance that raised the question of Poland possibly having a lethal duo with Sass and Grzybowska. In 2021 though, Grzybowska only played in four games. The Poznan native posted a .760% save percentage in her lone regular-season appearance but did appear in form with a .906% save percentage in her three playoff appearances.

11 – Vanessa Patla (D), 19, Polonia Bytom (11, +0)

Patla stays consistent in her final ranking. A rise in the ranking would have happened if not for a big jumper. The Polonia Bytom two-way defender posted a new career-high in points after recording five goals and three assists in 15 games. Patla appeared in the EWHL during the 2020 season but did not make any appearances for the team in 2021. The soon-to-be 20-year-old is already a three-time PLHK champion.

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2020 Top 30 Women’s U20 Players. #19-15

While this is not the time when I initially wanted to start this list, as I was hoping to have the Women’s World Championships to help distinguish some players at the top of the list. The coronavirus outbreak has effectively canceled or postponed all tournaments for the year.

This really is a bummer for Polish hockey with the amount of young talent they have at their disposal. It definitely seemed liked Poland had a chance to earn promotion at this year’s senior world championship. Women’s hockey in Poland is vastly on the rise with more players each year and a quick ability to develop players that are able to compete outside of Poland in stronger leagues. The talent pool has evolved so quickly that we have doubled our list size from last year. There is still a tremendous amount of work to be done, but the future is bright. Today we continue our 2020 ranking of the top 30 U20 Women’s players in Poland.

A player has to be 20 or younger on March 13th, 2020. There is no minimum age to make the list. Players are judged based on a combination of career history, current play, and potential.

Players #30-20

Rank – Player Name (Position), Age During Next Hockey Season, Team (Ranking in 2019, change in ranking)

19 – Zofia Postel (D), 18, UKH Białe Jastrzębie, (Unranked)

Postel was a newcomer to Poland’s strong defensive front at the U18s. Postel has not been able to be tested in the PLHK A yet, playing with Jastrzębie in the B league. There she recorded 4 points (2-2-4) in 13 games. I don’t believe she looked too out of place at the U18s and would like to see more of her at the top level. Her development reminds me a lot of the development of Karolina Rostalska.

18 – Alicja Kobus (F), 16, PTH Kozice Poznań, (9, -9)

Kobus really excelled in PLHK B last year, but had a rough U18s with her only statistic not being a 0 was her plus-minus at -5. This year she showed a vast improvement at the U18s and adjusted well in the PLHK A recording 8 points (5-3-8) in 10 games. While size is not everything, the last U18 tournament showed how big of a disadvantage it can be. Kobus was one of the top five tallest players on team Poland at 5’7. Her drop was more due to a few players just have larger jumps.

17 – Anna Kot (D), 16, UKHK Unia Oświęcim, (12, -5

Kot was apart of the impressive defensive group for Poland at the U18s. I was a bit concerned about the defense coming into the tournament, but she was one of the defensemen that grew a lot and assisted the unit in becoming very good, even the strength of the team. Her offensive side could still use some growth, but her size and defensive ability make her a valuable part of team Poland.

16 – Klaudia Kaleja (F), 20, KH Polonia Bytom, (6, -10)

In her U18 career, Kaleja was a force to be reckoned with recording 9 goals in 19 U18 games. She was also recorded a PLHK A season with a 2 point per game average. Since then though her production has continued to decline. This year recording a PLHK A career-low with a 1.28 point per game. She did get some time in with the Silesia Brackens in the EWHL. There she recorded 1 goal in 3 games. Poland has to hope that Kaleja can still become the goal scorer she showed she could once be.

15 – Katarzyna Wybiral (F), 20, Silesia Brackens, (Unranked) 

Wybiral was a key part of the Silesia Brackens this season. She recorded 2 assists in 14 games. She also has been apart of the last two senior national teams as well. In the PLHK A, she recorded 9 points (3-6-9) in 14 games for KH Polonia Bytom. Wybiral has picked up a lot of great experience this season and that should aid her development.

Players #14-10

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