Thursday, May 03, 2007

North Stars' Scovill signs with Wiscionsin-Stout

Even though he had a year of junior eligibility left, Traverse City North Stars defenseman Eric Scovill was ready to hit the books. Now, the Peoria, Ill. native will get to hit the ice as well, committing to play at the University of Wisconsin-Stout next fall.

“It wasn’t pressure from family, or from friends who were already at school – this was my decision to get going on my college education,” explained the 6-foot, 200-pound. Scovill, who joined the Stars after a December trade with Santa Fe. “I had played three years of juniors and really enjoyed it, but I think I had gotten all I could out of it. It was time to move on.”

Scovill, who registered three goals and seven assists in 39 contests between the North Stars and RoadRunners, chose the Menomonie, Wisc. university (enrollment: 8,000+) for its renowned College of Technology, Engineering and Management. Scovill plans to pursue a degree in construction management.

The Blue Devils hockey program, an NCAA Division III entry, was ranked as high as No. 5 nationally last year, but missed out on an NCAA Tournament berth despite a sterling 21-5-2 record in 2006-07. The Devils were 5-3 in Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play.

“It’s D-III, but it’s strong, competitive hockey in the WIAC,” Scovill said. “And the Stout program is really coming on strong the past couple of years, and I just hope to contribute to that.”

Traverse City head coach Scott Gardiner says the Blue Devils landed a rock-solid stay-at-home type that can help anchor the Stout blue line corps.

“I think they know what they’re getting in Eric, and that’s defenseman’s defenseman,” Gardiner explained. “He’s not a guy who is going to find himself in the rush too often, not a power play type of guy, but he’ll go out there and give you steady play in your own zone. We wish we had him here for another year, but we’re glad he’s getting on with his education and getting to play in a very competitive Division III conference.”

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