Zajac joins Union
The Zajac family hockey path -- play midgets in Winnipeg, juniors in Salmon Arm and college at UND -- is about to be broken. The third Zajac brother, 20-year-old Kelly, is enrolled at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., and he'll play forward for...
The Zajac family hockey path -- play midgets in Winnipeg, juniors in Salmon Arm and college at UND -- is about to be broken.
The third Zajac brother, 20-year-old Kelly, is enrolled at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., and he'll play forward for the Dutchmen beginning this month.
He will be the first of four hockey-playing brothers not to play for the Sioux.
The oldest, Travis, was a Sioux standout from 2004-06. He finished second on the team in scoring twice before moving on to the NHL's New Jersey Devils.
The second Zajac son, Darcy, is a junior on this year's Sioux team.
Kelly is the third child of Winnipeg's Tom and Trish Zajac.
He said he didn't talk at all with UND during the recruiting process. He considered Quinnipiac, Brown and Northern Michigan along with Union.
"At this point, I wanted to do my own thing," said Kelly Zajac, whose younger brother, Nolan, has yet to make a college commitment. "I wanted to follow my own path.
"Schenectady is a beautiful area, very nice area. The campus is great, too. It's not too big. I went on my visit halfway through (last) season. They invited me down and I just fell in love with it right away."
From the BCHL
Zajac is coming off of a breakout season with the Salmon Arm Silverbacks of the British Columbia Hockey League, the same team both Travis and Darcy starred at in previous seasons.
As a second-year player in the league, Kelly Zajac had 62 points in 60 games, ranking second on his team behind Wisconsin-bound Derek Lee. Zajac doubled the 31 points he posted in 2006-07.
"Coming in as a second-year player, I had a lot of confidence," Zajac said. "You go into games ready to have a good outing. I learned a lot during my first year and used that last year."
Zajac, a 5-foot-10, 185-pound forward, is expected to be an impact player in the Eastern College Athletic Conference, where Union finished fourth with a 12-9-1 mark. The Dutchmen were 19-14-3 overall last season.
"Kelly is a very smart, crafty centerman," Union coach Nate Leaman said. "We're going to look for him to be a top-three line player for us and to provide us some more scoring and depth through the middle."
Reach Schlossman at (701) 780-1129; (800) 477-6572, ext. 129; or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org .