Jonathan Stein is accustomed to racking up the points and putting the puck in the net.
So after a sub-par regular season — by his standards at least — Monday night came as a welcome surprise.
Stein’s skill was on full display as the winger scored four times and set up three other goals to lead the Tom Shaw Prospects to a 9-3 victory over the Harold Brittain Prospects in the Pacific Junior Hockey League’s Top Prospects Game.
It was played on Monday at the Mission Leisure Centre and Stein was one of nine players from Langley who suited up.
Another Langley player, Aldergrove Kodiaks’ forward Clayton Schroeder had a pair of goals in a losing cause for the Brittain squad.
“The frustration for Jonathan is he is playing against a lot of 18, 19-year-olds,” said Darren Naylor, Stein’s coach with the Delta Ice Hawks.
“They zero in on him but (at the) Prospects Game, when he was against his peers, with kids his age or a year younger, he dominates.
“If you prorate that to when he is 18 or 19, that is going to look fairly well for him.”
Stein, who turns 18 next month, said his goal at the Prospects Game was just to work hard and hopefully produce offensively. But he admits the seven-point explosion caught him by surprise.
“It was just fun to show what I can actually do,” he said.
“I have been getting the chances but putting the puck in the net has been the challenging part.”
Despite Stein’s lofty expectations for himself, he has had a fantastic rookie year with Delta scoring a dozen goals and 37 points through 38 games.
Those numbers are good for third on the team — and second among the Ice Hawks rookies — and Stein also sits 20th in the PJHL scoring race.
The only other 1999-born player ahead of him is his Delta teammate Jordan Bogress.
“Jonathan is getting his chances, he is just not burying them,” Naylor said. “He has scored at every level (but) this is a big jump, playing against bigger, older players.”
Last season, Stein played in the BC Major Midget Hockey League, finishing second on the Fraser Valley Thunderbirds with a dozen goals and 36 points in 38 games.
Naylor doesn’t expect the five-foot-nine, 170-pound Stein to be back next year to rocket up the junior B scoring leaders as the coach feels the young top-six forward will crack a junior A roster for 2017/18.
Stein was in training camp this past season with the BCHL’s Merritt Centennials and he said his biggest takeaway from his time with the junior A club was the importance of speed
“Just keep my feet moving and don’t shy away from the hits and skate as fast as I can,” Stein said.
In the meantime, Stein is focused on finishing up strong for the Ice Hawks as the team has four regular season games remaining and they find themselves sitting with 55 points, two back of the first place Grandview Steelers.