WORCESTER, Mass. – Holy Cross head men’s hockey coach David Berard announced three student-athletes have signed National Letters of Intent to attend Holy Cross and play for the Crusaders in the 2018-19 season. Ryan Leibold, Matt Slick, and Erkka Vänskä will join the men’s hockey program in the fall of 2018.
In November, Berard announced the signing of six student-athletes to join the Crusaders in the 2018-19 season. To read more about those players, click here.
Here’s a look at the incoming freshman class:
Leibold, a 5-foot-10, 190-pound forward played for the Sioux City Musketeers (USHL) and the Springfield Jr. Blues (NAHL). In the 2017-18 season Leibold played in 60 games for the Musketeers and recorded nine points on five goals and four assists. Prior to his season in the USHL, Leibold played for the Springfield Jr. Blues of the NAHL, where he played in 60 games and recorded 13 goals and 19 assists for 32 points. He was awarded the Blues’ Standard of Excellence Award in that same season. In the 2015-16 season, Leibold played for the Washington Little Caps of the NAPHL, where he was named an AYHL All-Star, NAPHL All-Star, and to the NAPHL First Team. Leibold played three seasons of varsity hockey for Stone Bridge High School and captained the team in the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons. The forward led his team to consecutive state championships and was selected as a First Team NVSHL All-Star in 2014, 2015, and 2016. In the 2014-15 season, Leibold was named the NVSHL Player of the Year. At Stone Bridge, Leibold recorded 101 points in 29 games played. He holds the record in all-time goals in a single-season (26), points per game in a single-season (3.48), and points per game (5.1).
Slick, a 6-foot-one, 200-pound defenseman played for the Chilliwack Chiefs of the BCHL as well as Proctor Academy. With the Chiefs, Slick was named the team’s Rookie of the Year and Defenseman of the Year in the 2017-18 season. In 58 games played for Chilliwack, Slick recorded four goals and eight assists for 12 points. Prior to joining the Chiefs, Slick played four years of varsity hockey for Proctor Academy and captained the team in his senior year (2016-17). In 131 games played, Slick recorded 28 goals and 61 assists for 89 points over his career at Proctor. In the 2016-17 season, Slick was named a Lakes Region all-star and led his team to a Lakes Region Championship.
Vänskä, a 5-foot-10, 175-pound forward played for the Fairbanks Ice Dogs (NAHL) and the Iowa Wild. For the Ice Dogs, Vänskä played in 136 games and recorded 86 points from 27 goals and 59 assists over two seasons. In the 2017-18 season, the forward recorded 60 points in 71 games for the Ice Dogs. Prior to joining the Ice Dogs, Vänskä played the 2015-16 season with the Iowa Wild, where he set the club record in points in a single season (65) and assists in a single-season (37). Vänskä also served as the team’s assistant captain.
The class of 2022 consists of nine student-athletes. Six forwards, two defenseman, and one goaltender will join the Crusaders’ 2018-19 roster. To read about the six other signees, click here. Since their announcement, Matt Barry and Will Conley earned All-League recognition. To read more about their seasons, click here. Click here to look through the entire incoming class!