Wayne, NJ - The Jersey Hitmen are proud to announce that assistant captain, EJHL southern division all-star and league scoring leader Brian Sheehan has accepted a scholarship to play at Sacred Heart University next fall. The St Louis, MO, native came to the EJHL after a banner year in the NAHL where Sheehan finished 4th in the league with goals (29) and 7th in the league with 60 points. Currently Sheehan sits atop the EJHL in scoring, alongside teammate and UNH recruit Matt Willows with a 22-39-61 line.
"Brian is a tremendous player and a great person," commented coach Harris. "He is an intense competitor that never stops battling. He is tremendously gifted offensively, has a great first step and is deadly around the net, he will be a force in Atlantic Hockey.
Harris went on to say, "I really appreciate the hard work that Brian put in to attain this scholarship. He came in early to camp, worked the Parise and Stevens summer camps and immediately gained a lot of respect from the youth players, the ownership and the staff. Sacred Heart is getting a great young man."
Brian becomes the third Sheehan to now commit to a division one hockey school joining his older brother, Brendan, that currently plays at Niagara (with ex-Hitmen captain, Bryan Haczyk) and twin brother, Patrick, who is committed to play at UConn in the fall.
When asked how he ended up in New Jersey, Sheehan commented, "Coach Harris." He went on to say, "once my season ended in Wichita Falls, I was on my way to the frozen four with teammate, Brandon Stroud, in Detroit. We spoke for a while, then touched base after coach's alma mater, BC, won the national championship. We have a few great conversations about college, New Jersey, the EJHL and most importantly the Hitmen philosophy. Coming from the mid-west I did not know what to expect, but once I arrived I was blown away. The equipment, the off-ice training gear, gym, bus, facility were all better than what I had experienced in the NAHL, but the major difference was the college scouts, after my first game I had Hockey East, ECAC and Atlantic schools talking to me, it was exactly what I wanted and exactly what coach promised.
Sheehan continued, "I had a chance to play in the USHL this year, but felt that the Hitmen would be a better fit, and I am so happy that I made the decision to come to the EJHL and play for the Hitmen. Committing to a division one school, and gaining a division one scholarship has been a dream of mine since I was a little boy. However, I would not have been able to get to this point without the undying support of my parents, family and friends. I owe the world to them and cannot wait to make them proud at the next level. I would also like to thank Coach Harris, Coach Hunt and the Reiss Family for all that they have done for me. My focus now shifts to my final junior hockey goal, winning an EJHL championship!"
Sheehan becomes the 11th Hitmen division one commitment and 12th college commitment overall for the upcoming fall or fall of '12.
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)