It’s a lot of work to help lead a team to first place overall in a league of more than 50 teams. But Drake Voell was happy to do it the first time, and he’d love to lead the Rockets Hockey Club to first overall in the USPHL Premier Division once again.
Voell, a 2000-born native of Leesburg, Va., will do so knowing that an NCAA college hockey roster spot is awaiting him at the other end of this 2020-21 season, with Arcadia University. He will start there in the Fall of 2021.
“The Rockets do an unbelievable job of showcasing their players, as well as communicating with schools and it shows as we had 10 commitments off [Head Coach Jason] Kilcoyne’s Premier team, including four who were not aging out,” said Voell. “I like Coach Kilcoyne’s coaching style and the Rockets communicate with their players very well.”
Kilcoyne was certainly appreciative of Voell’s contributions to the Rockets’ regular season championship - he posted a .932 save percentage in 14 games played this past year. He went 14-0 overall for the season, including one playoff win.
“Drake decided to come back to the Rockets for his final year and compete for the starting position. Drake has been a tremendous teammate and person since joining the Rockets last year,” said Kilcoyne. “He is always putting in the extra work on and off the ice to make his game stronger. I am so excited and proud of him for receiving his commitment from Arcadia University.”
Arcadia, located just north of Philadelphia, will open its NCAA existence in 2021-22, and Voell was their 10th player commitment for their inaugural NCAA season.
“Coach Vincent Pietrangelo reached out to me and said he liked my playing style. He’s a down-to-earth, honest man, and we had a good rapport,” said Voell. “We kept in touch for about three weeks. They asked me if I wanted to visit campus, and it blew me away. It’s very Hogwarts-esque, unbelievably gorgeous. Coach Pietrangelo went over the school’s philosophy on how they want the hockey program to be run, and how it will be a true family. I’m excited to be part of the core group in forming that family.”
“I’m happy to see his hard work pay off,” added Kilcoyne. “The timing is perfect as now Drake doesn’t have to worry about where he will be playing for the next four years. He can enjoy his last season at juniors and get prepared to make the jump to college.”
Voell went undefeated and only got better as the 2019-20 season went, not letting up more than two goals in any regular season game after November. In addition to the Rockets coaches and his teammates, Voell credits his active approach to goaltending for his success.
“I’m a smaller guy, I’m quick and efficient. I read the play well, and I’m an aggressive goaltender. I’m looking to add more puck-handling to my game, to be more like a third defenseman,” he added. “My team is very run-and-gun, so I like to keep the offense going and I know Arcadia will like that as well.”
The USPHL congratulates Drake Voell, his family, the Rockets Hockey Club, and Arcadia University for his commitment.