March 8, 2013, Penticton, BC (ISN) – The Penticton Vees Jr. ‘A’ Hockey Club is pleased to announce defenseman Troy Stecher (94) has committed to the University of North Dakota (UND) for next season.
Stecher will join teammate Wade Murphy as incoming freshman next fall. He is the fourth Vee to suit up for the program in the last three years.
“We are very happy for Troy, as he has been a great leader, teammate and role model four our organization in the past three years,” said Vees Head Coach and GM Fred Harbinson. “Troy’s presence on our blue-line will be greatly missed next year; but we are excited to watch his career continue at UND.”
Stecher is in his third and final season with the Vees. This season, in 51 games, Stecher has a career high of 46 points and also set career highs in goals (8) and assists (38). The 18 year-old is the third highest scoring defenseman in the British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL). In three seasons with the Vees, Stecher has played in 158 games and collected 18 goals and 108 points. Including the playoffs, the Richmond, BC product has played in 182 games in Vees colours, while amassing 22 goals and 123 points.
Troy Stecher says UND’s track record speaks for itself, “The development of NHL players is second to none. The way they run things is like a prohockey team. There are a lot of positives, and I couldn’t be happier for the opportunity they are giving me next season as a freshman.”
Last May, Stecher helped guide the Vees to their first national junior ‘A’ Championship in 26 years and was named the Royal Bank Cup’s top defenseman. Stecher is a two-time World Junior ‘A’ Challenge medalist, winning a gold medal in 2011 and a silver medal with Team Canada West this past November. Most recently Stecher was named a first team all-star in the Interior Conference by the BCHL.
UND is one of the most decorated programs in men’s college hockey. UND has appeared in the NCAA tournament 27 times and the Frozen Four 19 times, and won seven NCAA Division l Championships, 15 Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) Regular Season Championships and 10 WCHA Tournament Championships. The “green and white” are playing in their final season in the WCHA, and along with seven other schools, will play in the new National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) next season. Recent Vees alumni to have played at North Dakota include Brett Hextall, Evan Trupp, Mark MacMillan and Brendan O’Donnell.