ROCHESTER, Minn. – Rochester Grizzlies defenseman Noel Parker has announced his commitment to play Division-III hockey at St. Olaf College. Parker will begin his collegiate career in the 2020-21 season.
Parker, 19, is in his first and only season with the Rochester Grizzlies. The defenseman from St. Paul, MN has been a welcomed addition on the blueline, posting 20 points (five goals, 15 assists) in his 27 games with the team. Parker joined the Grizzlies at the end of October. He started the season with Northeast Generals of the North American Hockey League, playing eight games this season while playing 34 games with the Generals last season.
“[Parker] has been a great addition to our team, bringing toughness in the defensive zone with the ability to jump up and offense from the back end,” said Grizzlies Head Coach Chris Ratzloff. “His leadership has grown along with his game and we couldn’t be more thrilled for him on his commitment, it is well earned. St. Olaf and Coach Workman are getting a great human being. He will be successful on the ice and in the classroom. It will be exciting to see how his game translates to the college level.”
Parker had a strong high school career at St. Paul Academy, where he posted 86 points in 100 career games played. He was also the captain his senior year. He started his NA3HL career in 2017-18 by appearing in six games for the Great Falls Americans. Parker also played seven games for the Generals of the NAHL that same season.
“It’s everyone’s goal to move forward. It’s an honor to be the first [commitment] and to represent Rochester. My time here has helped me develop and move forward towards my goal of playing college hockey,” said Parker.
He will join the three-time Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference champions St. Olaf Oles and is the first Grizzly to announce his commitment to St. Olaf, going back to the inaugural season last year.
Parker and the Grizzlies are set to play a rare Thursday home game this week, as it’s a make-up of a previously postponed game against the Alexandria Blizzard. Thursday’s puck drop is set for 7 PM from the Rochester Recreation Center. The team has Friday off before being back on the road Saturday taking on Central Division rival Coulee Region Chill. Game time for Saturday’s contest is 7 PM from La Crosse, WI.