Ruslan Pedan, a defenseman for the Janesville Jets of the North Amercian Hockey League (NAHL), has accepted an NCAA Division I scholarship offer to play hockey at Bemidji State University in Minnesota. It is anticipated that Pedan will enroll and start playing hockey in the 2013-14 academic year.
Pedan will be joining current Jets forward Jason Ford playing college hockey at Bemidji State University. The Bemidji State Beavers currently play in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) conference.
In 18 games this season for the Jets, Pedan (6'1", 175 lbs) is tied for second on the Jets scoring leader-board with 12 points (4 goals, 8 assists). (Please see attached action photo of Ruslan Pedan.) In last Friday's 3-1 victory over the Coulee Region Chill, Pedan was involved in every Jets goal, scoring on a power play and assisting on the other two scores.
Ruslan is originally from Moscow, Russia, and moved to the United States almost three years ago to live out his dream of playing college hockey. After a stint two seasons ago in Long Island, Pedan played last season with the NAHL's Springfield Jr. Blues under Coach Joe Dibble. Pedan followed Coach Dibble to Janesville.
"This scholarship is what I have been thinking about and waiting for the last three years," said Pedan. "Bemidji State has a great hockey program and I am very excited to be going there."
"Ruslan is a player that comes to the rink everyday with a purpose and a great attitude," stated Jets Head Coach Joe Dibble. "He deserves every positive that comes his way in hockey. We are very proud of Ruslan for this accomplishment. To see everything he has worked so hard for come true is very fun to watch. Bemidji is getting a great young man, that is going to bring a lot of excitement to their game and a model citizen to their community."
Other present and past Janesville Jets players to commit to Division 1 hockey schools include Zach Diamantoni (Northern Michigan), Jason Ford (Bemidji State University), Garrett Cecere (Colorado College), Alec McCrea (Harvard), Ross Mauermann (Providence), Larkin Jacobson (University of Denver) and Rui Encarnacao (University of Connecticut).