Topeka defenseman Martinelli makes NCAA commitment
May 11, 2020
The Topeka Pilots of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) are pleased to announce that defenseman AJ Martinelli has committed to play NCAA Division III hockey for Endicott College.
Martinelli, 20, just completed his second and final season playing junior hockey, which was spent between the NAHL and the NA3HL. The 6’2/190 lbs. native of Grosse Pointe, Michigan, appeared in 40 games for the Pilots during the 2019-20 season and recorded three assists.
“Plain and simple, AJ made everyone on our team this year a better person and hockey player. One of the most genuine and selfless players I’ve coached, AJ’s mindset was to help those around him succeed. His contagious competitive spirit will be dearly missed by our coaching staff. We know he will thrive as a student-athlete at Endicott. We are very proud of him and his accomplishments thus far and can’t wait to see him continue to raise the bar,” said Pilots head coach Simon Watson.
Martinelli made his NAHL debut during the 2018-19 season with the Austin Bruins. He would then join the Willmar WarHawks in the NA3HL, where he appeared in 34 games and recorded 17 points. He went back to the NAHL to play for the Northeast Generals for five games during the season.
He was also selected to and played in the 2019 NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament for the West Division.