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Ashton McNelly Commits To The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

The Spruce Grove Saints are proud to announce 20-year-old forward Ashton McNelly has committed to the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT), who compete in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC).

The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology is situated one hour from McNelly’s hometown of Westlock, AB. In September, McNelly will join fellow Saint Alumni Brophy Dunne, Kye Whillans and Ethan Leyer as members of the Ooks program.

Rob Sklaruk, General Manager of the Saints, expressed immense satisfaction as McNelly secured his academic and athletic future stating, “Ashton’s dedication, work ethic, and talent were invaluable to our team. He epitomizes the correct way to play the game, and I am thrilled to witness his continuation of his hockey journey with NAIT next season. Ashton’s passion for the sport and unwavering commitment to excellence make him a genuine asset both on and off the ice.”

In September of last year, McNelly was acquired by the Saints in three team trade. McNelly’s junior hockey career was divided between Junior ‘A’ and the Western Hockey League (WHL). Particularly notable was his time in the WHL during the 2022-2023 season, as a member of the Seattle Thunderbirds, when the Thunderbirds captured a WHL Championship, going all the way to the Memorial Cup Finals in Kamloops, BC. Prior to his time in the WHL, McNelly played for the Sherwood Park Crusaders and the Grande Prairie Storm, ultimately concluding his Junior ‘A’ career with the Spruce Grove Saints.

The 6’1”, 187-pound right shot forward spoke about his recent commitment saying,

“The Spruce Grove Saints provided me with an incredible opportunity that greatly contributed to my growth, both as a player and as an individual. I would like to thank the organization for the invaluable lessons and skills that I acquired during my time, and I eagerly anticipate carrying these with me as I embark on my new chapter at NAIT.”

McNelly joins Alexander Babich (Trine University), Tristan Baumung (Red Deer College), Ryan Johnstone (Lindenwood University), Evan Sundar (Minnesota State-Mankato), Ryder Matter (Michigan Tech University), Keifer Miller (Holy Cross University), and Teo Pisani (University of Nebraska-Omaha) as committed players to post-secondary institutions from this past season.

The Spruce Grove Saints 2023-2024 season has come to an end, with the team falling short to the Okotoks Oilers in the BCHL Wild Card Series. Nevertheless, don’t miss the opportunity to secure your season tickets for the upcoming 2024-2025 season!

Grab yours here à