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Aquinas Hockey Program Signs First Recruit

01/27/2012 – Spring Lake native and hockey goaltender Matthew “Reid” Daniels has signed a letter of intent to continue his academic and athletic career at Aquinas College.

Daniels, an All Star Selection at the Total Scouting Junior A. Free Agent Camp in Brownstown, Michigan, is currently tending goal for the Pittsburg Junior Penguins of the North American “3” Hockey League (NA3HL). He has opted to forgo his remaining junior eligibility and return to West Michigan in April, after his current season is complete, and graduate from Spring Lake High School prior to enrolling at Aquinas.

“The Saints hockey family is thrilled that Reid has chosen Aquinas College to further both his academic and athletic career.” said head coach Mark VanVliet, “he (Daniels) has a solid hockey pedigree and is exactly the type of young man we were looking for to build our team around.”

The inaugural Aquinas College Saints ice hockey program was recently granted admission to the Michigan Collegiate Hockey Conference (MCHC) and will begin play in the fall of 2012.

“After spending my high school senior year away from my family and friends pursuing my dream of playing hockey at the college level, I realized that if I continued through the normal channels of junior “A” I was going to defer my college education for two more years.” Daniels said, “When coach VanVliet called me and told me that Aquinas College was beginning an ACHA (American Collegiate Hockey Association) varsity hockey program and moving up to the MCHC beginning in 2012 there was no reason to make my college education wait.”

“I am very excited to be a part of Aquinas College and Saints Hockey”, Daniels added, “I know it won’t be easy being a first year program but I am looking forward to the challenge and helping the program grow and succeed.”

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