Lake Superior State University Lakers of the Division 1, Western Collegiate Hockey Association have secured a commitment from a plum prospect in their own backyard.
HockeyNewsNorth.com has confirmed that Owen Headrick, a 1997 birth-year defenceman who hails from Garden River First Nation, has committed to LSSU and will begin his collegiate career with the Lakers effective the 2015-2016 season.
An academic standout at St. Mary’s College in Sault Ste. Marie, Headrick is about to begin his second season with the Soo Thunderbirds of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League.
Playing as a 16-year old with the Thunderbirds in 2013-2014, Headrick was named NOJHL rookie-of-the-year. In 71 games, playoffs included, the skilled, smooth-skating, cerebral defender had 10 goals, 34 assists, 44 points for the Thunderbirds after making the NOJHL team from the Soo Thunder minor midgets.
In choosing LSSU and a four-year, full-ride scholarship, Headrick bypassed a direct offer from owner-general manager Sherry Bassin of the Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League.
Erie selected Headrick in the 14th round of the 2013 OHL draft and Bassin subsequently — and aggressively — pursued the youngster to sign with the Otters.
But citing a trust factor with the Lakers and new head coach Damon Whitten, Headrick and his family opted to commit to LSSU.
The Thunderbirds have scheduled a press conference for Thursday at 2:30 p.m. relative to Headrick committing to LSSU.
Headrick will play a second NOJHL season with the Thunderbirds in 2014-2015, complete his high school education at St. Mary’s and then begin his WCHA career as a Laker in 2015-2016.
PHOTO: Defenceman Owen Headrick of the Soo Thunderbirds of the NOJHL has committed to play for the Division 1, Lake Superior State Lakers of the WCHA effective the 2015-2016 season. (Photo by Ali Pearson.)