Danbury forward Murphy makes NCAA commitment
The Danbury Jr. Hat Tricks of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) are pleased to announce that forward and captain Shane Murphy has officially announced his commitment to play NCAA Division III hockey for the Utica College Pioneers (UCHC) for the 2021-22 season.
Murphy becomes the fifth Jr. Hat Tricks player to announce his college commitment during this season and the 14th Jr. Hat Trick to earn a spot on a collegiate roster.
“We’re excited to welcome Shane to Pioneer Nation,” commented Utica head coach Gary Heenan. “He’s a hard-working, ultra-competitive player with strong hands and a heavy shot.”
Murphy, 21, is heading back home, as Utica College’s campus is mere miles from his hometown of Oriskany, New York. After graduating from Trinity-Pawling High School, Murphy played the 2019-20 season in the North American Hockey League for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights, accumulating 14 points in 44 games.
He ranks seventh on the team in scoring during the current 2020-21 season with 11 goals and 12 assists for 23 points, including six powerplay points. Overall in 89 career NAHL games, he was recorded 37 points.
Murphy inherited the captaincy midway through the season, following the departure of former captain Kyle Gudme to the University of St. Thomas in January. His veteran leadership proved invaluable to the team on and off the ice, leading the charge for the Jr. Hat Tricks as they remained in the Robertson Cup Playoff picture up through the final week of the regular season.
“We love that he developed his leadership skills as the captain of the Hat Tricks this year,” Heenan added.
Prior to playing in the NAHL, Murphy played one season in the NAPHL, putting up 20 points in 30 NAPHL games for the WBS Knights 18U and 16U teams.
“I am very excited and look forward to playing for Utica College back home in front of family and friends,” commented Murphy. “Being part of the hockey program there will be special as I have watched it grow and become successful since I was a kid. I am expecting to get a great education while working with a very dedicated and committed group that is looking to win Championships.”