PROVIDENCE, RI (WPRI) — This week’s Cardi’s Furniture & Mattresses Hometown Sports Hero is Brett Berard.

The former Hendricken All-Stater returned to Rhode Island this weekend as a member of USA Hockey’s Under-18 National Development Team. The forward with four goals and four assists in eight games this season, a schedule that includes some of the top programs in college hockey.

“Last year was up and down, physically it was a lot at times, being the size he was,” said U18 head coach Seth Appert. “But he kept getting better throughout the season. What we would say of his 17 year, was a lot of growth, even though it didn’t always show up on the scoreboard. There was a lot of growth, in his daily competitiveness and approach. And then he’s really jumped this year, from a  guy that was at sometimes struggling to a guy that’s been very impactful every day in practice, but also in every game, including the college games which is hard to do at his age.”

Berard’s success with the U18’s earning him attention from NHL scouts and the Providence College commit is expected to hear his name called in June’s NHL Draft.

“We talked, it’s funny, to the NHL scouts in Central Scouting about him before the season and we said there’s going to be a big jump, that he was going to be a surprise. He probably wasn’t on the radar last year, undersized, up and down U17 year. The way he’s played at the beginning of the year, especially the Fall Classic in Pittsburgh opened a lot of people’s eyes, to how talented a player he is and how hard he competes on the puck.”

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