Penn State Freshman defenseman Cole Hults has been named to the preliminary roster for the 2018 U.S. National Junior Team that will compete in the 2018 International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championships in Buffalo, N.Y. from December 26, 2017 through January 5, 2018 as announced earlier Tuesday evening.
“Cole plays a very mature game which has enabled him to have a quick transition to Division I hockey,” said Penn State coach Guy Gadowsky. “He has really impressed the coaching staff with his unique ability to make plays and generate offense without taking risks. We congratulate him on his selection to Team USA’s camp and believe he would be an excellent addition to the team and a great representative of Penn State.”
Hults has appeared in all 18 games so far this season and ranks tied for fifth on the team with a pair of goals and ten assists for 12 points. The freshman currently ranks fifth in the Big Ten in points by defensemen and second among rookies while also being tied for third nationally among freshman blue-liners in points.
“It's an extreme honor to be going to a camp like this to represent not only your country but Penn State at a national level,” mentioned Hults. “I wouldn't be in the position without my teammates and my coaches so I'm very thankful for them.”
Hults becomes the first Nittany Lion ever to be named to the Team USA preliminary roster and invited to their pre-tournament camp.
“This is a tournament that I've watched ever since I can remember. I remember watching guys like Will Butcher (2017 Hobey Baker Award Winner and current New Jersey Devil defenseman) in this tournament the last few years and to be given a chance to make the team is very surreal for me. I'm excited and can't wait to get started.”