North York Rangers rookie Peter Muzyka has committed to Cornell University for a yet undetermined season, the club announced Thursday.
Muzyka, 16, has decided to take the college route despite being selected in the fourth round, 70th overall in the Ontario Hockey League entry draft by the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds.
The 6-foot-3, 178-pound defenceman did not take the decision lightly.
“It is a big deal,” said Muzyka.
“It’s a great school with a great hockey program and community. My family and I are very excited. We went down to Cornell, visited and got a tour, and had had good talk with the coaches, and then we went to the Soo for rookie camp, and though I have nothing at all bad to say about the Greyhounds, I just think Cornell is better suited for me.”
Muzyka impressed this past season with the Toronto Titans 2000s minor midgets of the Greater Toronto Hockey League, and played two games as an underage call-up for the OJHL’s Aurora Tigers, posting an assist over that time.
The Thornhill native has a mature perception of his own playing style.
“I definitely think I’m more of a defensive defenceman,” he said, despite posting 22 points in 53 games for the Titans last year.
“I really like that shut-down defenceman role. I have a little offensive upside for sure, but I love to stay at home and protect my net.”
Muzyka played four contests two years ago as an underaged call-up for the Titans minor midgets at the 2015 OHL Cup.
The year that he plans to attend Cornell is still to be determined.
Story by Jamie Neugebauer, Communications Director
Image by Dan Hickling