Dylan Zink of the Jamestown Ironmen has committed to continue his hockey career at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.
The UMass Lowell River Hawks are part of the Hockey East Conference and actually captured their first-ever conference title last weekend in front of 13,738 fans at the TD Garden in Boston.
The River Hawks are ranked third in the country in Division I hockey and are currently competing in the NCAA's Northeast Regional Tournament with an opportunity to play their way to the Frozen Four. This marks the second consecutive year that the team has made the NCAA tournament, finishing one win away from the Frozen Four in 2012.
"When you're playing juniors, it's a dream to get to play Division I hockey," said an excited Zink after finishing up practice at the Jamestown Savings Bank Arena late Wednesday morning.
Zink, a 6-foot, 175-pound defenseman, had an opportunity to tour the UMass Lowell campus, getting a chance to meet everyone in the hockey program from the head coach to the equipment manager.
"I liked everything about their program and the direction that they are headed in," he said.
"Dylan has been a huge part of our success this season," said Ironmen head coach Dan Daikawa." We traded for him very early in the season and he has continued to score consistently, be offensive and quarterback the power play."
Zink has compiled 15 goals and 17 assists in more than 50 games with the Ironmen this season. He stands at plus-14 with 32 points and one game-winning score.
"We are excited as an organization," added Daikawa. "He has worked extremely hard on and off the ice in his time in Jamestown, and we know he'll continue that success at the next level."
Despite the big decision and all of the excitement surrounding it, Zink looks to focus his attention to the upcoming North American Hockey League playoffs.
Jamestown has already clinched a playoff berth and will host the Johnstown Tomahawks this Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 5 p.m. in their last homestand of the regular season. Based on the outcome of this weekend's NAHL schedule, the Ironmen could earn a second-place finish in the North Division and a first-round bye in the playoffs.