The Arizona Wildcat’s are proud to announce their first goalie commitment to the 2022/23 recruiting class with the addition of Niklas Seppänen!
Niklas Seppänen, standing at 6’1”, 185-pounds, comes from Oulunsalo, Finland and played last season in the (USPHL-PR) US Premier Hockey League for the Carolina Jr. Hurricanes. During his only year with the Hurricanes he held a stellar 2.25 goals against average and 0.925 save percentage in 27 games played. Seppänen marks the second consecutive player to commit to the Wildcats from the USPHL-PR along with recent commit, Jacob Kozden. Before his time with the Hurricanes Seppänen played for Koovee U20 – one of the top junior hockey leagues in Finland.
“I am really excited for this opportunity,” said Niklas Seppänen. “The Universities impressive academics and top tier facilities combined with the hockey programs recent success makes the University of Arizona a great place to spend the next few years. Go Wildcats!”
During the past four seasons coach Berman has been spoiled with one of the best goalie tandems in the ACHA: Anthony Ciurro and Nolan Bivolcic.
Anthony Ciurro will depart the hokey program with multiple league awards, including WCHL MVP and will continue with his post graduate education at the Universities Pharmaceutical program.
Nolan Bivolcic has yet to decide if he will return for a 5th season.
One thing is for certain, they will be very difficult to replace. However, it’s Seppänen’s similar mindset to those two that has coach Berman so excited.
“I love Seps competitive fire,” said coach Berman, “We look for guys in our program that hate to lose - especially in net. When you have a goalie group that never gives up on pucks it elevates your entire practice. That stuff is contagious, and the players dig deeper to put pucks in the net. That is the foundation of our championship culture. But Sep isn’t just a ‘try hard,’ he is incredibly talented goalie who is very athletic, making him explosive in the crease. He has a real knack for breakaways in big situations. We pride ourselves on our defensive structure and cutting down on odd man rushes. But every now and again you’re going to have leaks so its great to have a goalie who can step up and make timely saves.”
|Carolina Jr. Hurricanes