The New Jersey 87's are excited to announce that Cal Couell has committed to play Division III hockey at Stevenson University for the 2021-2022 season.
Couell, a 20-year-old defenseman from Orchard Park, NY, is in his first season with the 87's and has recorded 21 points (5g, 16a) through 26 games.
Head coach Adam Houli spoke about Couell's accomplishment and the work he put in to get there.
"He's a great kid who worked his butt off to get to where he is now. He's someone we had targeted last year and he was super excited to join us," Houli said. "His goal was to get a college commitment and we thought he could get there. He trusted us and we trusted him, so to see it come to fruition is an awesome thing for him."
Stevenson University is a Division III program located in Baltimore County, Maryland. Competing in the United Collegiate Hockey Conference, the Mustangs are led by head coach Dominick Dawes.
Couell talked about his commitment as well as the opportunity to play alongside former 87's defenseman Justin Vickers.
"It's awesome to know that there are a ton of good players at that program. I've heard great stories from my teammates now, Dante Terramani and Dylan Gutierrez telling me everything about Vicks and that he's a great guy, so I'm excited to get down to Maryland for the next four years and tear it up with them," Couell said.
After spending two seasons in the NA3HL with the Texas Jr. Brahmas, Couell chose to play in New Jersey for his final year of junior eligibility, and quickly established himself as a dynamic two-way defenseman in the EHL. Houli credited Couell's ability to adapt to the league and organization quickly.
"The fear is when you come in for one year, it's hard to really peak or get to that point when you can. He's certainly done that for us, he asks good questions and came in knowing there were some flaws to his game. He wanted to get them corrected and he wanted to flourish. For him to do that speaks a lot about who he is as a person and as a player. He's super coachable and I think that's allowed him to get this opportunity to commit."
Couell also discussed his development with the 87's throughout the season, and described how the coaching staff helped him reach his goal of getting to the NCAA level.
"Coach Houli and coach Matty are just unbelievable coaches, I've learned so much since I've gotten here from Texas. They just helped me out so much with the little things in my game and I can't wait to continue improving on those things to get even better."
The 87's organization would like to congratulate Cal and his family as he prepares to advance his hockey career to the Division III collegiate level.
Tag(s): In the News