Austin forward Almquist makes NCAA D1 commitment
December 23, 2019
The Austin Bruins of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) are proud to announce that forward Ben Almquist has committed to play NCAA Division 1 hockey for the University of Minnesota-Duluth in the NCHC and will begin his collegiate career with UMD immediately.
Almquist, 20, is leading the Bruins in scoring so far during the 2019-20 with 30 points (17 goals, 13 assists) in 28 games. The 6’0/175 lbs. native of Victoria, Minnesota, joined the Bruins halfway through the year in 2018-19 where he racked up 20 points in 23 games.
Almquist was recently named the NAHL’s Forward of the Month for November.
“We are excited for Ben and the opportunity he has at UMD,” said Bruins Head Coach Steve Howard. “It’s obviously tough for us to lose our leading scorer at this point in the season, but our job as coaches and as an organization, is to help these young men fulfill their dreams of playing college hockey. The University of Minnesota Duluth will be getting a top-notch player but more importantly, a wonderful person. Ben led by example the entire time he was with us. His character and attitude was infectious in our locker room and he will do the same for the Bulldogs. This is a big opportunity for our current players as well and we’re excited to see which of our guys will step up and play a bigger role in the second half of the season.”
Over the course of two half-seasons with the Bruins, Almquist tallied a total of 50 points in 51 games, 27 goals and 23 assists.
“Coming to Austin was one of the best things for my career,” stated Almquist. I was instantly welcomed with open arms and accepted into the team and organization. They gave me every opportunity to show what kind of player I know I can be, and I am forever grateful to them for it. I can’t say enough about how much I appreciate the Bruins organization and the town for everything they did for my career. Without them, none of this would be possible.”
“You definitely don’t hear a lot of college hockey guys coming in halfway through the season,” continued Almquist. “It was a surprise, but definitely a good one. I was very excited when I got the call. I did my homework, took the time to think about it, talk with my family. It felt like the right fit and the best for my hockey career.”
At the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Almquist will join the two-time defending National Champions as well as former Bruin Jade Miller who continues his senior season with the Bulldogs. Almquist will depart the Bruins immediately to begin his collegiate career during the 2019-20 NCAA season.