by Alex Kyrias, North American Hockey League (NAHL)
The Austin Bruins, proud members of the North American Hockey League (NAHL), are pleased to announce that forward Easton Viitala has committed to play NCAA Division I hockey at Northern Michigan University. Northern Michigan competes in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).
Viitala, 20, just completed his second season playing for the Bruins in the NAHL. The native of Marquette, Michigan, posted career highs in goals, assists and points as he helped the Bruins all the way to the Robertson Cup Finals. In 59 regular season games, Viitala (6’5/195) registered eight goals and nine assists for 17 points. He was also a +11 during the regular season.
Viitala also played in all 14 Robertson Cup Playoff games for the Bruins this past season. In those 14 playoff games, Viitala had five points (1 goal, 4 assists).
“This is a great opportunity for Easton with his hometown team. He has improved tremendously over the past two years and is a fantastic addition to the Northern Michigan hockey program,” said Bruins head coach Chris Tok.
During the 2012-13 season, Viitala had nine points (4 goals, 5 assists) in 54 games played. Overall in his NAHL career, Viitala has played in 113 career NAHL regular season games and totaled 26 points.
Prior to his arrival in Austin, Viitala played Midget AAA hockey for his hometown Marquette Electricians team.
Viitala is the 12th current or former Bruins player who has made an NCAA commitment this season. Other current NCAA Division I commitments from this year’s Bruins squad include: Jay Dickman (Bemidji State), Lucas Kohls (UMass-Lowell), Guillaume Leclerc (UMass-Lowell), Nick Lehr (Minnesota), Charlie Manley (RPI), and Joe Schuldt (Michigan Tech).