Wayne, NJ - The Jersey Hitmen are proud to announce that rookie defenseman, Connor Costello, has committed to West Point for the fall of 2013. A native of Londonderry, NH, the 6'1 200 pound, defenseman becomes the Hitmen's 15th division one commitment this year.
Known for his physical play and booming shot, Costello has grown into a more complete defenseman this season in New Jersey. Recently named to the 2013 EJHL southern division all-star team, Costello had this to say on committing to the U.S. Military Academy, "I am so excited for the opportunity to serve my country and play division one hockey for West Point. Playing DI hockey is a dream come true, but to attend the top school in the country (West Point) and to serve in our nations military is too much to put into words!" Costello continued, "I would like to thank coach Harris, coach Hunt and all my teammates for all that they have done for me. I have learned so much this season, I can not say enough good things about the Hitmen family. I am so glad with my decision to play in the EJHL especially for Jersey. I would also like to thank my Mom, Dad and family for all that they have done for me. All the support they have given me and all the opportunities that they have provided me, I would not be here without them. Collectively, right now, we are over the moon with excitement and joy."
Prior to choosing to play his junior hockey in the EJHL for the Hitmen, Costello attended Governor's Academy in Byfield, MA (the same school that GM/Head Coach Toby Harris graduated from in 1992) and captained the team in 2011-2012.
"When I saw Connor play on film, I was surprised that he had not already committed to another USHL or EJHL team," commented coach Harris. "I watched him play at Governor's Academy against Cushing and thought to myself 'this kid has a ton of tools.' He is big, shots the puck a ton, can skate, and is mean as a snake. I was excited at the possibility of working with him for a whole season. I knew he was a DI candidate. I also thought that he just had to slow things down and play within himself, he was trying to do too much in prep hockey. and at times that got him into trouble. This season he has certainly done that, working closely with Coach Hunt on the back end, has paid immediate dividends for both Connor and the Hitmen, including 7 goals (5 registered on the powerplay)."
Harris went on to say, "Connor and his D partner, Eric Sade (Cornell University '13), have really anchored our core, defensively. Although Connor can hammer the puck on the powerplay, he and Eric have been a great 'shut down' pair for us and will continue to be right through play-offs. I am so excited for Connor and his family on the commitment and I know coach Riley is getting a top level defenseman, but more importantly, a top level person, he will flourish at West Point!"
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)