Alpena IceDiggers defenseman Ben Kitzmiller has committed to Lake Superior State University for the upcoming season.
The Lambertville, Mich., native was planning on returning to the IceDiggers for his third season, but early last week was contacted by the staff at LSSU and offered a spot.
"They contacted us and needed a guy to come in and play right away and Ben is more than ready and we couldn't be happier for him and his family," said IceDiggers coach Kenny Miller.
"Ken Miller really helped us out," Lake Superior State head coach Jim Roque said. "He encouraged Ben to come here when he could have played another year of juniors.
"Ben is a big, strong kid and had a good year in the NAHL. He really wants to go to college. He's more of an offensive defenseman, and gives us some depth on defense."
Kitzmiller helped guide the IceDiggers to the NAHL playoffs last year posting 13 goals and adding 19 assists for 32 points in 59 games.
Kitzmiller becomes the sixth player from last year's team to move onto the Division I level, joining Todd Rudasill (Ohio State), Drew Pierson (West Point), Eric Roman (Wayne State) Shawn Hunwick (Michigan) and Chad Billins (Ferris State 08-09).
With Kitzmiller leaving for LSSU coach Miller added two defensemen to the training camp roster. In a trade yesterday with Fairbanks, the IceDiggers acquired 20-year-old Tim Olson.
Also attending camp is Ryan Sell, who has spent the last two seasons playing for the Toledo Cherokee in the Central States League.
Training camp begins Tuesday, September 4 at 2 p.m. at Northern Lights Arena.