Waterloo Black Hawks forward Blake Winiecki has selected St. Cloud State University as the destination for his future athletic and academic endeavors, the Hawks announced on Wednesday.
Winiecki is one of several Waterloo players to have committed to the same school as a current teammate. Patrick Russell announced his intention to play for the Huskies in November. Three other pairs of Waterloo players will also be on the way to the same NCAA rinks: Jake Horton and Alec McCrea are both committed to Harvard, Dane Cooper and Tim Lappin will skate for Ivy League rival Brown, and Peter Krieger and Austin Vieth are pointed “North to the Future” at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks.
Currently tied with Russell, Winiecki – who turned 20 last weekend – is Waterloo’s co-leading goal scorer with 16 through his first 31 games of the season. Adding 11 assists, the second-year forward from Lakeville, Minnesota, is tied for fourth in team points at 27. He is also +13 for the year, tied for the fifth-best plus/minus rating on the squad. Winiecki has enjoyed especially strong performances recently, recording five goals and three assists in his last three games, including his first USHL hat trick against the Dubuque Fighting Saints on January 4th. In 51 games as a rookie last season, he notched five goals and 14 assists.
“I feel like St. Cloud is a place I can play and improve my game over the next four seasons and get an education as well,” said Winiecki, who noted that the Huskies roster currently includes several other former Black Hawks. “I think that I can follow in their footsteps and also have a successful college career.”
Currently the fourth-ranked program in NCAA Division I hockey, St. Cloud State’s 2013/14 roster includes juniors Joe Rehkamp and Andrew Prochno, as well as freshman Ryan Papa, who all spent time wearing Black Hawks colors. The Huskies are led by Bob Motzko who also played for Waterloo, as well as the Dubuque Fighting Saints.
Winiecki is the 18th member of the 2013/14 Black Hawks to make a college commitment.
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