Powassan Voodoos goalie Nate McDonald has parlayed a strong season in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League into a Division 1, National Collegiate Athletic Association commitment.
The Powassan puckstopper — who has led all NOJHL goalies in virtually every category this season — has committed to the Niagara University Purple Eagles for the 2017-2018 season.
McDonald becomes the second NOJHLer in as many seasons to head to Niagara to play at the Division 1 level, following the path of former Soo Thunderbirds defenseman Caleb Boman.
A North Bay native, McDonald leads all NOJHL goaltenders with 29 wins, a 2.16 goals against average and three shutouts.
“It has always been my goal to play hockey in the NCAA at the Division 1 level and the Powassan Voodoos and the NOJHL have given me every opportunity to succeed and I cannot thank them enough,” McDonald began.
“The league is constantly looking at new ways to showcase its players and I could not be happier with my choice of coming to the NOJHL, specifically Powassan, as my junior hockey experience has been everything that I had hoped for and more,” McDonald added.
Powassan general manager Chris Dawson believes the NCAA commitment is good news for the Voodoos and the NOJHL.
“NCAA Division 1 commitments are special and I think it shows that you don’t have to leave the north to get noticed,” stated Dawson.
McDonald, who has a 1999 birth date, was selected by the Peterborough Petes at the 2015 Ontario Hockey League draft. His OHL rights were subsequently dealt to the Niagara IceDogs.