Estero, Fla.-Former Jr. Blade and captain James Hyatt committed to Johnson and Wales (NCAA Division III).
A native of Coral Springs, Fla., Hyatt was a member of the Florida Jr. Blades from 2010-2012. He captained the record breaking 2011-12 season and was seen as a vital part of the Blades back-to-back runs at a national championship.
"Hyatt was a major factor in our back-to-back USA Hockey Nationals berths," said Jr. Blades head coach and general manager Tad O'Had. "His leadership and character help drive a team and I know he'll bring these qualities to the NCAA level and have success."
Hyatt graduated to the AJHL and has spent the 2012-13 season with the Hartford Jr. Wolfpack.
"The Jr. Blades were a huge part of my development," said Hyatt. "In hockey your team becomes your family and I always know I can come home."
The five-foot-nine defenseman returns to the Jr. Blades and Estero, Fla. during the off-season to continue his training at Athletic Republic. The performance training facility is home to the ECHL Florida Everblades, hockey and features dedicated trainers and hockey specific equipment, including a hockey treadmill.
"I've spent the off-season training at Athletic Republic," said Hyatt. "The training and conditioning was one of the reasons I originally picked the Jr. Blades and it continues to help me with my hockey career."
Johnson and Wales is a member of the NCAA division III and feature a promising roster of talent. Hyatt, known for his work ethic is expected to fit right in with the talented group.
"The Blades family is extremely excited for James committing to Johnson and Wales," said O'Had. "James is a class act and a first rate hockey player, to see him continue to the NCAA level is rewarding. I can't name a more deserving person, with his work ethic on and off the ice over the past three seasons."