MARQUETTE, Mich. - Walt Kyle the head hockey coach at Northern Michigan University has announced that the following student-athletes have signed a Nation Letter of Intent to attend NMU and play hockey for the Wildcats. Signing to play hockey for the 'Cats are Bobby Selden (1-30-85), Dusty Collins (2-28-85),Darin Olver (5-3-85), Pat Bateman (5-20-82) and Rob Lehtinen (4-24-83). Selden and Lehtinen both played for the Marquette Electricians. "It is very important that we continue to get quality local players such as Bobby (Selden) and Rob (Lehtinen) to be part of the program," Kyle said. The five players signed represents the largest class ever signed by the Wildcats during the early signing period. Assistant coaches do all the leg work to get a class like this,"Kyle added. Brian (Renfrew) and Dave (Shyiak) did an excellent job of bringing in a great class. Matter of fact they have done an excellent job of bringing in back-to-back great classes. To win championships you must bring in great classes like they have done."
Selden (6-1, 198) a native of Negaunee, Mich. and a defenseman is currently playing for the United States National Development Program Team Under-18 Team (USNDPT U-18) in the North America Hockey League (NAHL). Last year he played for the USA U-17 squad. Through four games this season he has 18 penalty minutes. We are excited to get a local player as talented as Bobby," Kyle said. "The coaching staff has known about him for a number of years. He has the ability to impact a game physically."
Collins (6-3, 196) a native of Gilbert, Arizona and a forward is also a member of the USNDPT U-18 Team along with Selden. Through five games, Collins has one goal, two assists for three points. His only goal on the season has been a game-winner. "He is just beginning to hit his stride as a player.He is a big, strong guy," Kyle said. "I love his character and work ethic."
Olver (6-0, 165) from Boise, Idaho and a forward is currently a member of the Chilliwack Chiefs of the British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL). During the 2001-02 season playing for the Eastview Lightening High School, Olver had 32 goals and 37 assists in 27 games. Through 25 games this season, Olver is currently leading the Chiefs with 15 goals, 25 assists for 40 points. "His father, John, is one of my closest friends. The team has a long tradition of sending players to NMU," Kyle said. "Darin is in his first year of junior hockey and is one of the elite junior hockey players. He was one of the most sought after recruits this year."
Bateman (6-1, 195) a native of Calgary, Alberta plays at a forward, on the wing, is currently playing for the Crowsnest Pass Timberwolves of the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL). He has scored 10 goals, 20 assists for 30 points after 22 games in the 2002-03 season. His coach is Dan Olsen who's brother is former NMU All-American Darryl Olsen. "He is a 20-year-old junior player who is mature and is an excellent skater," Kyle said. "He is hard nosed and plays a gritty game. Bateman is ready to play the college game. This is a tradition that we would like to continue to take older kids and he falls into that category."
Lehtinen (5-11, 175) a defenseman and a native of Marquette, Mich.is currently playing for the Waterloo Black Hawks of the United States Hockey League (USHL). Through 17 games for the 2002-03 season, Lehtinen has five goals and seven assists for 12 points. "He is the type of player who should flourish on the Olympic ice," Kyle said. "He has excellent speed, good skills and is a strong player."