Another week, another NCAA commitment for the Vees. Two weeks ago it was Olivier Mantha, last week Anthony Conti and today it’s young 16 year-old Jarod Hilderman. The defenseman has verbally committed to the University of Minnesota-Duluth for 2016-17. Good news for Vees fans, as they will be able to watch “Hildy” for another two seasons after this year.
Hilderman is quite the story as he made the jump from Midget ‘AA’ to the BCHL this past off-season. Hilderman played in his home province of Saskatchewan at the famed Notre Dame hockey school in Wilcox. On the ‘AA’ team the blue-liner put up 30 points in 31 games to go along with 73 penalty-minutes. Hilderman, actually tried out for Notre Dame’s two ‘AAA’ teams, the Hounds and Argos but didn’t stick. So, he wasn’t “good” enough to crack those rosters but does earn a spot on the Vees back-end and sews up an NCAA scholarship in a matter of weeks. It’s lesson in perseverance for any budding hockey player. Hilderman went from ‘AA’ to the BCHL after being cut by two teams at his own school. I asked Hildy if he talked to anyone back at school about his commitment. He paused, smiled, and said “I’m sure the word has got around.” Well said.