The Salem News
---- — St. John’s Prep senior hockey captain Brian Pinho has been ranked 109th out of all North American skaters in the final Central Scouting rankings.
This year’s Salem News Hockey Player of the Year, the 6-and-1/2-foot, 173-pound center is the highest rated high school player from Massachusetts, having moved up eight spots from his midterm ranking of 117.
Central Scouting ranks North American and European skaters and goalies and judges where they might be accurately chosen in the 51st NHL Entry Draft, which this year will be held in Newark, N.J. June 30.
Pinho, a North Andover native, was part of three St. John’s Prep Super 8 teams that all reached the semifinals or better. He led his team in scoring this season with 15 goals and 42 points and finished his Eagles’ career with 101 career points. He has already signed a scholarship to play Division 1 hockey at Providence College.
If he is drafted — Pinho projects as a fourth or fifth round NHL selection — he’d be the third St. John’s Prep player in as many years to be selected, joining former linemates Colin Blackwell (2011 by the San Jose Sharks) and Sam Kurker (2012 by the St. Louis Blues). Blackwell is now a sophomore at Harvard while Kurker is a freshman at Boston University.