Alum Chad Veltri currently plays for Niagara University in the Atlantic Hockey conference . He recently completed his first year with the Purple Eagles where he earned numerous awards from Atlantic Hockey: Rookie of the Week (Feb. 25), Goalie of the Week (Feb. 11 and March 3), February's Goalie of the Month, and was named on the All-Rookie Team. Veltri, also finished the season with the best save percentage in the country among rookie goaltenders (.931) and was tied for ninth overall.
We caught up to chat about his time in the Pens Elite program and how he has adjusted to being a student athlete at Niagara University.
Definitely the speed and skill is different. You have to adjust fast, you are playing against the top guys every single night. There are no easy games.
It helped so much the facilities and coaching are top notch. I know many guys didn’t have that available to them growing up.
I would say just keep working hard and trust the process. For me I was an overage 18U player with not many options to move on. The Pens Elite helped me develop a lot that year and got me to where I am today.
Winning the 18U National Championship in San Jose, CA.
Eric Cooley. He was on my team when we won Nationals and it’s great we have that connection that will last a lifetime.
Alarm goes off around 7:15am, head to the rink for 8am. We are at the rink working out and practicing until 11am. After morning workout and practice we head to classes for the day.
Chicken, rice, and broccoli.
So far it has been Penn State. They had a sold out crowd and being so new it was overall a great experience.
Des Moines is my least favorite rink. It’s an older rink with a smaller ice sheet so you always have that disadvantage. As well their fans are heckling you all game.