After Connor Callahan made the jump from the Founders League to the USHL this year, Avon Old Farms head coach John Gardner and his staff were left with the difficult task of replacing their four-year graduate between the pipes.
“The goalie inquiries are off the charts. People say there’s a shortage of goalies. There is no shortage of goalies. I average one goalie inquiry a day. It’s unbelievable,” Gardner said.
So how does a high-level program like Avon Old Farms come to settle upon a potential starting goaltender? For senior Stephen Peck, a visit between the AOF staff and his family made all the difference, along with recommendations from former assistant coach Mike Pereira, who saw Peck play for the New Jersey Avalanche.
“Peck is friendly with a few people we are familiar with. He actually lives in New York City. We made some pretty good inroads with the Avalanche in recent years, and coach Pereira recommended him,” Gardner said.
A New York City native, Peck is a 2005 birth-year transfer weighing 174 pounds with a 6-foot-2 frame. He wasted no time getting acquainted with his future teammates, backstopping the Yale Junior Bulldogs split-season team.