Photo Credit: Garrett James Photography
The Merritt Centennials are proud to announce that defenseman and local product Mike Van Unen has committed to play for Northern Michigan University for 2019-20.
In his 3rd year of BCHL action, Van Unen has taken a big step forward this season in terms of minutes played, match ups, and points totals. His 3 goals and 12 assists through 29 games already surpasses his previous high of 13 points in 57 games last season, and his rookie season of 6 points in 31 games.
Van Unen says that it’s his puck moving ability that caught the programs eye.
“They like my skating, moving the puck and said it would fit in well with the culture they’re trying to build there.”
Head Coach Joe Martin adds that there’s a bright future ahead for Mike.
“It’s what he can do with his feet, he can shoot the puck at the next level, he can do a lot of things that we can only see glimpses of that the next level gets really excited about.”
The move will see the twin brothers split up for the first time in their hockey careers, but Van Unen says they both did what felt right.
“It was more about finding the best fit for ourselves than going as a package.”
Van Unen and the Cents have a busy week of hockey ahead with away games against Prince George and Vernon before returning home to conclude the season series against Salmon Arm.