St. Cloud defenseman Duerr to join Maine for second semester
The St. Cloud Norsemen of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) are pleased to announce that defenseman Sam Duerr will begin attending and playing NCAA Division I hockey for the University of Maine in the spring semester and will finish the 2021-22 hockey season with the Black Bears men’s hockey team.
Duerr, 19, had originally committed to Maine back on January 24, 2020, while he was playing for the Shattuck-St. Mary’s Prep team.
“I got a call about the situation at Maine and what was going on,” explained the 6-foot-1, 201-pound Duerr in an interview with the Bangor Daily News. “They were short a couple of bodies and they needed someone to come in. It’s super exciting. It’s going to be a change of pace. It’s so much faster here. It’s going to be a change of everything but I’m up for it.
Duerr played 22 games in the NAHL with the Norsemen this season, tallying two goals and eight assists. The native of Chicago, Illinois was the team’s highest scoring defensemen, held a plus-14 rating, and was a member of both the Norsemen power play and penalty kill units, scoring a power play goal and adding 5 power play assists.
He practiced with the team for the second time on Tuesday morning and said the energy is awesome.
“Coach [Ben Barr] runs a great practice. They’re awesome to be a part of,” Duerr added.
He said his new teammates were very welcoming and that he is going to try to keep things simple.
“I want to keep the puck out of our own net. Get the puck out of the [defensive] zone. Make a good first pass,” he said. “I’m going to start from there and let the game come to me.”
Barr said Duerr has a great opportunity.
“It’s weird when players come in the middle of the year. It’s not ideal. So we appreciate that he is willing to do it,” Barr said. “He has a good stick. He will have to adapt to the speed of the game. But he’s a smart player and he comes from my high school [Shattuck-St. Mary’s] and they do a great job teaching the game.”