The Brookings Blizzard are pleased to announce that forward Nick Ford has committed to play NCAA Division III hockey at Elmira College in the ECAC West Conference. Ford, a Chicago, IL native, played his final year of junior hockey with the Blizzard and finished fourth on the team in coring with 38 points (12 goals, 26 assists) in 59 games. He also added five points in four playoff games, which led the team during the playoffs. Ford was selected to play for Team Central at this year's Top Prospects Tournamnet where he scored one goal.
"I'm very excited for the opportunity to play college hocey at Elmira. I want to thank the town of Brookings, the Blizzard organization, my coaches, teammates, family, and friends for all the support over my hockey career. I also want to thank my billet family for everythin they did for me this season. I'm looking forward to getting a great education at Elmira and joining an amazing hockey program." – Nick Ford
The Brookings Blizzard are pleased to announce that Colton Schmidt has made his NCAA commitment to play hockey for Gustavus Adolphus. Gustavus is a Division III college located in St. Peter, MN and a member of the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC). Schmidt spent two seasons wtih the Blizzard and finished playing in 60 games totalling 9 points (4 goals, 5 assists).
"We are very excited for Colton and will definitely miss his speed and tenacity next season." – Dan Daikawa, Blizzard Head Coach
"After overcoming several challenges the last 2 seasons, I'm very excited to be joining such a great hockey organization and school and look forward to making an impact and contributing to the success of the Gusties! I'd like to thank my family, my girlfriend, friends, and coaches who have supported me throughout the years." – Colton Schmidt
The Brookings Blizzard are proud to announce that Connor Hutchins, 2015-16 Captain, has made his NCAA commitment to play hockey at The College of Brockport New York. Brockport is a Division III college and a member of the SUNYAC Conference. Hutchins, a North Richland Hills, TX native, played in 55 our of 60 games this season and finished with 14 points (8 goals, 6 assists) while being second on the team in power play goals. He played in 110 games over the past two seasons with the Blizzard finishing with 30 points (14 goals, 16 assists).
"Connor was a great leader that came ready to play every day. He will be missed by the team and by the town of Brookings." – Dan Daikawa, Blizzard Head Coach
"I'm excited to be able to continue my hockey career at Brockport. The program there is on the rise and it's an exciting time to be a part of it. When it came down to it, Brockport was the best fit for me athletically and academically. I can't think the Blizzard organization and my teammates enough for all of their support. Being able to play in Brookings for two years and serve as Captain was an honor and an experience I'll never forget. I'd also like to thank my family who has been there since day one and supported me through this entire process." – Connor Hutchins
The Blizzard are proud to announce that TJ Samec, 2015-16 Assistant Captain, has made his Division I commitment to play hockey at Rensselaer (RPI), a member of ECAC Hockey. Samec, a St. Paul, Minnesota native, led all Blizzard defenseman in scoring and finished 5th on the team with 25 points (10 goals, 15 assists) in 60 games. Samec's 10 goals were just 2 goals shy of the league lead in goals scored among defenseman.
"We are very excited for TJ, he has been a big part of the Blizzard organization over the last two years. We want to wish him good luck and thank him for all his hard work." – Dan Daikawa, Blizzard Head Coach
"I am very excited to have the opportunity to play at RPI under Coach Appert and his staff. I want to the thank the Brookings community, the Brookings Blizzard staff for two good years, all of my coaches, teammates, family, and friends who have helped me along the way. I'm looking forward to the next chapter of my life at RPI, getting a great education and also continuing my dream of playing college hockey." – TJ Samec
The Blizzard are proud to announce that the 2015-16 Most Valuable Player, Griff Jeszka, has made his Division I commitment to play hockey for the University of Massachusetts. Jeszka, a Muskego, Wisconsin native, excelled this season with the Blizzard. In his previous two years he played with Coulee Region and Corpus Christi in the NAHL. In the second half of the 2015-16 season he took over the scoring lead for the Blizzard and finished on top with 48 points (15 goals, 33 assists). Jeszka had seven points in the last five games to help the Blizzard secure a playoff spot where he was second on the team with four playoff points in four games.
"The Blizzard organization is very happy for Griff. He put in countless hours both on and off the ice working on his game and it paid off for him. We wish him the very best with his future in hockey." – Dan Daikawa, Blizzard Head Coach
"I am very excited and humbled to have the opportunity to play for Coach Carvel and his staff at the University of Massachusetts. I want to thank the community of Brookings and the Brookings Blizzard organization, all of my coachses, teammates, family, and friends for helping me reach my goals. I look forward to the challenge ahead playing in the Hockey East and becoming part of a very exciting time for UMass Hockey as a Minuteman." – Griff Jeszka
The Blizzard traveled to Wisconsin this past weekend for a series against the Janesville Jets of the Midwest Division.
The game ended with a 5-3 victory for the Blizzard. Trailing 3-2 entereing into the third period, the Blizzard scored three goals to seal the win. Durment scored the game winner while Hakkarainen added the insurance goal; Valent, Jeszka and Rivard also scored for the Blizzard. Jeszka and Valent had three point nights. Gwillim made 37 saves for the victory in his Blizzard debut.
Blizzard forced overtime, but fell in overtime 4-3. Gamelin, Callahan, and Ford scored in regulation.
The team hosts Aberdeen this Wednesday, January 13th – puck set to drop at 7:30pm sharp.
This past weekend Brookings hit the road to Aberdeen and Bismarck.
Brookings trailed 2-0 after one, but then dominated the second period outshotoing Aberdeen 16-4 and scoring one goal by Loagn Rivard from Valent and Gamelin. The Blizzard were unable to get anything else past Gavin Paczoza giving Aberdeen the 4-1 victory.
Bismarck scored a late first period goal for an early lead, but Brookings came out and dominated the second. Cardelli scored his 8th of the year from Hakkarainen and Samec. Just three minutes later, Valent snapped the puck over the right shoulder of DeSimone. Sangvonzey earned the assist in his second game with the Blizzard. Bismarck tied the game at 2 early in the third period. After an exhilerating back and forth in OT, the game was decided by Mitchell in a shootout! Kuehmichel stopped all three shots in the shootout and improved his record to 7-5-1. Brookings holds onto third place in the Central Division just four points out of first.
The team travels to Aberdeen on New Year's Eve – puck drops at 7:15. Watch live on fasthockey.com.
The Blizzard hosted the Janesville Jets of the Midwest Division this past weekend.
Ford scored his 6th goal of the season to give the Blizzard lead early on, while Jeszka scored with just seconds remaining in the second period for a 2-0 lead. Janesville cut the lead in half with just under eight minutes to play. Brookings was able to seal the victory with empty net goals from Elmore and Durment. Magnus Lindhe stopped 25 of 26 shots for his first victory with the Blizzard.
Janesville came back Saturday night with a 5-2 victory. Jeska scored in the second peiod to pull the Blizzard closer, but Janesville took control with two more goals in the second. Brookings scored midway through the third from Revering, but Janesville added one more to earn the weekend split.
Brookings (13-10-2) is in third place just five points out of first in the Central Division. The Blizzard travel to Aberdeen on Wednesday, then host the Bismarck Bobcats this Saturday, December 12th for the annual Ugly Sweater Party! Wear an ugly sweater to the box office on game day to receive $1 off your regular priced ticket!