Bismarck defenseman Wallace makes NCAA commitment
July 6, 2016
By Paul Teeple, Bismarck Bobcats
The longest-tenured member of the NAHL’s Bismarck Bobcats 2015-16 squad has found a collegiate home as Nick Wallace announced Tuesday that he has committed to play NCAA Division III hockey for the University of Wisconsin-River Falls starting in 2016-17.
“It’s great to be able to say that I’ll be a college hockey player this fall,” admitted Wallace, who joined the Bobcats as an NAPHL tender signee from the California Titans in 2013, “especially for a strong program like River Falls.”
In three years along the Cats’ blue line, the Sun Valley, California, native turned in 49 points on six goals and 43 assists to go with a career plus-15 rating. He was a model of consistency in his time in black and gold, averaging 53 appearances per season—including suiting up in all 60 regular season games in 2014-15—and playing in all 22 Bobcat playoff games between 2014 and 2016.
Prior to his arrival in the NAHL, Wallace (5’10/185) played for the California Titans 18U team in the NAPHL where he recorded 17 points in 22 regular season games.
“Nick has been such a steady contributor for us for a long time and has such great speed that he will be an instant impact guy for the Falcons,” added Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie.
Under long-time head coach Steve Freeman—entering his 21st season behind the bench at W.H. Hunt Arena—UW-River Falls has been a constant force: the Falcons are 356-179-46 on Freeman’s watch and have had a winning record in 19 of the last 20 years. The team finished ranked 11th in the 2015-16 USCHO rankings.
That long-time success was just one factor in Wallace’s decision, however.
“In talking to the coaches, they told me I’d have a chance to play a lot as a freshman,” recalled Wallace, “so I did a lot of research of my own and it helped me know I was making the right choice: good school, good program, beautiful campus.”
Wallace becomes the 11th current or former Bobcat to commit from the 2015-16 season, joining Hunter Shepard (Minnesota-Duluth), Aaron Herdt (Alaska), Joe Tyran (Air Force), Jared Pike (American International), Patrik Demel (American International), Cole Souto (St. John’s), Alex Strand (UW-Eau Claire), Garrett Nelson (Concordia College), Jared Spooner (Minnesota State-Mankato) and Tanner Salsberry (Bentley).