Bismarck defenseman Demel makes NCAA DI commitment
May 5, 2016
By Paul Teeple, Bismarck Bobcats
As the NAHL's Bismarck Bobcats gear up to continue the Central Division Finals this weekend, defenseman Patrik Demel announced Wednesday that he has committed to play NCAA Division I hockey in 2016-17 at American International College in the Atlantic Hockey Association.
“It is very exciting to be committed and to know I will be playing Division I hockey next year,” stated Demel, who topped all Bobcat blueliners with 32 points (2g, 30a) in 2015-16. “I am thankful to all of my Bobcat coaches, teammates, the team staff and all the fans who have supported me and our team this season.”
Demel, 20, currently leads all defensemen in scoring for the 2016 Robertson Cup Playoffs with seven points on two goals and five assists.
The Ostrava, Czech Republic, native started his Bobcat career five games into the 2015-16 season and, in addition to his offensive production, meshed quickly with the team’s defensive identity—eventually earning the NAHL Defenseman of the Month award in December. He was also named to the 2015-16 NAHL All-Central Division Team at the conclusion of the regular season.
“The way Patrik plays makes my job easy—selling college coaches on his abilities,” hailed Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie. “His offense has been huge to our success, but his competitiveness and tenacity in his own zone have made him a top-end defender in our league.”
Demel will join Bobcat teammate Jared Pike at AIC in the fall, where they will be part of the first recruiting class of new men’s head hockey coach Eric Lang, who was hired on April 13 to lead his alma mater’s squad.
“One of the big things that attracted me to American International is that Coach Lang is building something great,” added Demel. “And to be able to join a teammate like Jared in helping the program break out is very exciting.”
With Demel’s college decision, the Bobcats now have six former or current players committed to Division I programs in 2015-16: Demel, Pike, Joe Tyran (Air Force), Hunter Shepard (Minnesota-Duluth), Jared Spooner (Minnesota State-Mankato) and Tanner Salsberry (Bentley).