Austin forward Murphy makes NCAA commitment
July 6, 2017
It’s been a whirlwind year for Austin Bruins and NAHL forward Jack Murphy. His 2016-17 season started with the Minot Minotauros, detoured to the Austin Bruins, and will finish in college hockey – with a commitment to play NCAA Division III hockey for the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire BluGolds. Murphy announced his commitment this week to join the 2013 NCAA DIII National Champs.
“UW Eau Claire has an excellent academic reputation and the hockey program is top notch which is exactly what I have been looking for,” said Murphy. “I am excited to get to campus and start the next phase of my academic and athletic careers.”
Murphy, 21, was traded from Minot to the Bruins on February 8th – a move that sent defenseman Paul O’Connor to the Minotauros. Murphy has totaled 21 goals and 30 assists in 90 regular games over the course of two seasons in Minot. He had also performed well against the Bruins in the 2016 Central Division Semifinals.
Murphy found success in Austin immediately upon his acquisition, scoring two goals in his Bruins debut – February 10th against the Coulee Region Chill. That night just happened to be one of the biggest of the year for his new team – Paint the Rink Pink. The hot start catapulted Murphy to an appearance at the 2017 NAHL Top Prospects Tournament in Ann Arbor, MI and an eventual total of 9 goals and 3 assists in just 18 games as a Bruin.
Murphy, who is from Prior Lake, Minnesota had a lot of thanks for people in the Bruins organization, as well as his billets in Minot.
“I want to thank the Bruins coaching staff for believing in me and giving me opportunities that I had not had before,” said Murphy. “I would like to thank the Bruins ownership and fans that welcomed me to Austin late in the season. Riverside Arena is a great place to play.”
“I’m also lucky that I had great billets in Austin and Minot and would like to thank the Forlands and Armstrongs for welcoming me into their homes to be a part of their families,” Murphy added.
The BluGolds play in the WIAC (Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) along with fellow UW schools Stevens Point, River Falls, Stout and Superior. They defeated Oswego State to win the 2013 National Championship in Lake Placid, NY, the program’s first NCAA title, with the 1984 team winning the NAIA championship. The 2016-17 team finished 18-7-3, falling in the WIAC Championship Game to UW-Stevens Point.