The St. Louis Jr. Blues, proud members of the NA3HL, are pleased to announce that defenseman Joey Boccardi has been named the 32nd captain in club history. He will be joined as alternates by forwards Joey Solimando, Mike Deeba, and Mike Ivory, following a vote by the players and staff.
A 6’, 168-lb left-shot blue-liner, Boccardi is a veteran on the Jr. Blues blue-line. Entering his 3rd season with the Jr. Blues, Boccardi has scored 15 goals and added 45 assists in 82 career games, with a plus-minus rating of +60, and has represented the Jr. Blues twice at the NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament. He is no stranger to team leadership, either: last year with St. John Vianney High School, Boccardi captained the Golden Griffins to their first St. Louis city hockey championship in 24 years and was named Prep Hockey Player of the Year for 2019-20 by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Solimando, a 6’, 190-lb left-hander, was one of the Jr. Blues’ biggest offensive contributors last year, with 16 goals and 28 assists in 40 games played. He also was named to the Central Division team at the 2020 NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament, where he recorded an assist. The grandson of former St. Louis Blues captain Barclay Plager and a former NAPHL standout with Carshield AAA, the St. Peters, Mo. native tendered with the NAHL’s Jamestown Rebels during the offseason, but with that club’s decision to take a leave of absence for 2020-21 due to the COVID-19 pandemic he will finish out his junior hockey career at home.
Second alternate captain Mike Deeba also had a productive first season as a Jr. Blue in 2019-20. The St. Louis native and former teammate of Solimando’s on Carshield scored six goals and 15 assists in 40 games played. Despite standing 5’8” and weighing just 140 pounds, the former CBC Cadet brings an element of grit to his game, recording 63 penalty minutes last season.
The 5’9”, 210-lb Ivory was a model of consistency for the Jr. Blues in his rookie campaign, playing in all but one game for the Jr. Blues in the 2019-20 campaign. A native of Fishers, Indiana, he ended the season with five goals and four assists.
“I think this year’s captains each bring their own style of leadership and personality to the table, which is what makes this group a strong one,” said Jr. Blues head coach Chris Flaugher. “Joey Boccardi’s a hard worker and has maturity and mental toughness beyond his years. Solly is a guy who leads by example and isn’t afraid to get into battles and play a physical game. Deeba is the definition of ‘work ethic’: he never quits on or off the ice, and Mike’s a great off-ice leader who comes in every day and gives everything he’s got. I’m confident that these four young men will be excellent leaders and ambassadors for the Jr. Blues and our great tradition.”