Michigan Tech netminder Pheonix Copley will forego his final two seasons of eligibility to join the NHL’s Washington Capitals.
Huskies’ coach Mel Pearson says the North Pole native has already signed a contract with the team after finishing his sophomore season with .911 save percentage. Copley was named WCHA Defensive Player of the Week two times, sporting a 2.51 goals against average and a 10-13-6 record. Copley appeared in 54 games during his two-year career, racking up a total of 18 wins and four shutouts.
“I’d like to thank Pheonix for his time with our team,” said Pearson. “We wish him the best as he follows his dreams of playing in the National Hockey League. As we recruit top-end players, we’ll be faced with losing some of them early as was the case last year with Jujhar (Khaira, who signed with the Edmonton Oilers). We look forward to watching their success as their careers progress.”
Copley, who was a free agent, received a two-year, entry-level contract beginning with the 2014-15 season. He will join the American Hockey League’s Hershey Bears on a tryout agreement this spring.
“It’s a dream come true,” said Copley. “Without Coach Pearson and the staff here believing in me and giving me the opportunity here, I would not be where I am now. I want to thank them and my teammates for helping put me in this position. My experience at Michigan Tech has been great. The support from the fans and community has been something I’ll never forget.”
Michigan Tech recently finished its 2013-14 season with a 14-19-7 record and fifth-place finish in the WCHA.