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Zapata commits to Fitchburg State University

By Anthony DiPaolo, 02/22/23, 5:15PM EST


First-year 87's forward will join Falcons for 23-24 season

The New Jersey 87’s are proud to announce that Kris Zapata has committed to play Division III hockey at Fitchburg State University for the 2023-24 season.

Zapata, a 20-year-old forward from Voorhees, NJ, joined the 87’s EHL team early in the 2022-23 season. In 26 regular-season games, Zapata has recorded three goals and 14 points.

Head coach Adam Houli spoke about Zapata’s commitment as well as his role in bolstering the team’s forward group when joining the team.

“I’ve been on Kris for a few years, and then when we finally got him, he’s provided the boost we needed and he’s for sure an NCAA player. For us to be a part of that journey and be a part of him getting to the NCAA level has been awesome. He’ll be a special player at the next level,” Houli said.

Fitchburg State University is a Division III program located in Fitchburg, Mass. Competing in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference, the Falcons are led by head coach Dean Fuller.

Zapata discussed his commitment and what it means to join the Falcons for the 2023-24 season.

“It was an exhilarating experience making the commitment official to a school that had everything I was looking for,” he said. “It was exciting to see my goal come to fruition. I’m very grateful for this opportunity and want to thank my teammates and the coaching staff.”

Since joining the team, Zapata has proven to be a versatile forward while playing anywhere in the lineup. He discussed joining the team and what he has been able to accomplish in his final year of junior hockey.

“I was very fortunate to join the 87’s. I developed drastically upon joining the program and found a role on the team. I have definitely grown as a player, teammate, and person being a part of the 87’s culture,” Zapata said.

The 87’s organization would like to congratulate Kris and his family as he prepares to advance his hockey career to the Division III collegiate level.