Tri-City Storm captain Brian Ward is headed back to the college ranks next season after making a commitment to St. Lawrence University.
“I just felt like St. Lawrence was really the place for me personally,”
Ward said. “They really like me as a player and were very clear about
where they see me in the program’s future. I really like the other guys
on the team and the school reminded me of my prep school days a little
It is the third season in the USHL for Ward who is third on the Storm
with 19 points (10g, 9a) through 18 games this season. Four times he
has produced multi-goal games and he is currently riding a five-game
point streak, collecting nine points (2g, 7a) over that span. The
20-year-old was also tabbed at the team’s captain this year.
He first came to the Storm for the 2010-11 season and scored nine goals
and six assists before leaving for Dartmouth the following fall. After
one semester in Hanover, Ward made the decision to return to Kearney,
scoring 16 points in the team’s final 25 games of the 2011-12 campaign.
The Haverhill, Massachusetts native is two regular season games shy of
100 for his USHL career.
“I was more familiar with the process the second time around,” Ward
said. “I went up to St. Lawrence and I kind of had to look at it from
all angles. It’s six hours from my house so location was a little bit
of a factor but when it came down to it, it’s the only Division I sport
on campus so they love their hockey.”
Five other current USHL players are also committed to play hockey at St. Lawrence University – Michael Marnell (Des Moines Buccaneers), Gavin Bayreuther (Fargo Force), Michael Rotolo (Green Bay Gamblers), Drew Smolcynski (Indiana Ice), and Eric Sweetman (Youngstown Phantoms).
St. Lawrence University is a member of the ECAC and has six USHL alumni
on the roster this season; George Hughes (Waterloo Black Hawks), Kyle
Flanagan (Cedar Rapids RoughRiders), Chris Martin (Indiana Ice), Gunnar
Hughes (Waterloo Black Hawks), Justin Bruckel (Lincoln/Cedar Rapids),
and Patrick Raley (Chicago Steel).
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)