Colts net German goalie

GENE PEREIRA Special to QMI?Agency

An already crowded Barrie Colts crease is bulging today.

The Colts now have six goaltenders in the stable after they used their 25th overall pick in Wednesday's 2011 Canadian Hockey League Import Draft to select German Mathias Niederberger.

The 18-year-old Dusseldorf native played professional hockey last season with his hometown Deg Metro Stars of the German League, backing up former Toronto Maple Leaf J.S. Aubin.

Colts goaltending coach Dan Cloutier has seen video and likes what he sees of Niederberger, one of Germany's top goaltending prospects.

"We talked to some of his coaches and guys who played junior that know what it takes to be a good goalie in junior and we've been told he can push for a No. 1 job and be that type of goalie coming in,"said Colts assistant general manager Jason Ford, who headed up the import draft for the team.

"We're pretty excited about it," he added. "He's real quick, he's faced pro shots for a full season."

Ford said there were other times eyeing Niederberger, "but at the end of the day, he wants to come over here and play junior and really showcase himself to North American scouts. His goal is to play in the NHL. He has two good years here and he'll really put himself on the map."

The Colts traded down in the import draft on Monday, dealing the first-overall pick to the London Knights, who used the selection to grab Finnish defenceman Olli Maatta, while highly rated Russian centre Mikhail Grigorenko went second overall to the Quebec Remparts.

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