FORT WAYNE, Ind. - The international flair of the Indiana Tech hockey team has provided a foundation of success for the program to grow.
Of the 25 players on the Tech Division I roster, 6 hail from outside of the United States.
“You get to build a lot of new connections,” forward Adam Jonak says. “You really get to know people from where they’re from and how different it is.”
Jonak, a sophomore from Praha, Czech Republic, says he always dreamed of America as Disneyland, not thinking he would have the opportunity to play college hockey in the United States.
Now that he has come to the United States, Jonak plans to stay. He is studying sports management and human resource management with hopes of landing an American job after he graduates.
“It’s very sprawling,” head coach Frank DiCristofaro says of the attraction of the Summit City. “There’s a lot of things to do. I think a lot of guys—especially coming from the foreign nations—enjoy that.”
Completing his 3rd season as coach, DiCristofaro says that Indiana Tech’s commitment to the hockey program also lures players from around the world to play for the Warriors. In addition to the Czech Republic, players come from Sweden, Canada, Michigan, Ohio, Minnesota, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Fort Wayne.
Defenseman Felix Kronwall of Stockholm, Sweden, is the nephew of Detroit Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall.
“I love the downtown,” sophomore forward Ryan Attwood says of living in Fort Wayne. “It’s a big city, but yet it still has a small feel.”
Attwood, a Toronto native, says he likes the small, private school feel of Indiana Tech versus some of the other colleges he explored.
Indiana Tech will compete this weekend in the Great Lakes Collegiate Hockey League.
Next season, Indiana Tech will become charter members of the NAIA’s Varsity Division, a 5-team league that was created through an agreement with the NAIA and American Collegiate Hockey Association. The NAIA hockey will return after a 34-year absence next March.
|Player||Hometown||Miles from FW|
|Quentin Holmes||Gahanna, Ohio||162|
|Chad Frost||Clarkston, Mich.||209|
|Dylan Grant||Victoria, British Columbia||2,366|
|Nick Papandrea||Chesterfield, Mich.||195|
|Kyle Cobb||New Boston, Mich.||145|
|Jace Childs||Savage, Minn.||584|
|Brian Skillicorn||Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.||2,122|
|Zack Morlock||Buffalo, N.Y.||392|
|Ryan Attwood||Toronto, Ontario||392|
|Matt Walton||Upper Sandusky, Ohio||104|
|Taylor Jones||Detroit, Mich.||162|
|Jarrett Pfeiffer||Ypsilanti, Mich.||140|
|Joe Molfetta||Bath, Pa.||585|
|Ryan Theisen||Fort Wayne, Ind.||0|
|Brett Lervold||Victoria, British Columbia||2,366|
|Anthony Passarelli||Downers Grove, Ill.||178|
|Jimmie Kotilainen||Oxelosund, Sweden||4,248|
|Chet Tooker||Rumson, N.J.||679|
|John Slavik||South Lyon, Mich.||153|
|Zach Larson||Roseville, Minn.||567|
|Dominick Manochio||Stewartsville, N.J.||605|
|Nick Denice||Fort Wayne, Ind.||0|
|Felix Kronwall||Stockholm, Sweden||4,253|
|Alex Gregorich||Berkley, Mich.||178|
|Adam Jonak||Praha, Czech Republic||4,492|