The Des Moines Buccaneers announced that forward Patrick Kirtland has committed to play collegiate hockey beginning next season at the University of Connecticut.
Kirtland is playing in his second USHL season with the Buccaneers and is tied for third on the team in scoring with 12 points (6g, 6a) while appearing in all 20 games. He opened the season scoring a goal in the first game of the year, a 5-4 overtime loss to Fargo. The 20-year-old then had a USHL career best three-point night (2g, 1a) in the 6-0 victory vs. Omaha on November 23rd. The Lenexa, Kansas recorded 14 points (6g, 8a) in 47 games last season for the Bucs.
“We are all very happy and proud of Patrick for making this decision,” said Buccaneers’ head coach Regg Simon. “Every team needs players like him. He can play on any line because we know what kind of effort he’ll bring every night and his intangibles are off the charts.”
The University of Connecticut Huskies are a member of the Atlantic Hockey conference and have three USHL alumni on the roster this season; Alex Gerke (Tri-City Storm), Tom Janosz (Ohio Junior Blue Jackets), and Billy Latta (Sioux City Musketeers/Chicago Steel).
Patrick Kirtland’s twin brother, John, also plays hockey and is a defenseman for the Texas Tornado of the North American Hockey League (NAHL).
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)