By Maria Canales, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - After competing at Miami (Ohio) during the 2013-14 and part of the 2014-15 seasons, junior Trevor Hamilton will use his final two years of eligibility to don the Blue and White for Penn State.
As a transfer, Hamilton is already familiar with the speed of play at the collegiate level. A skilled defenseman, Hamilton will be critical in replacing the graduated seniors from last year's team who manned the blue line, Luke Juha and Connor Varley.
While Hamilton took a break from collegiate hockey he was playing in the competitive environment of the United States Hockey League. Hamilton played 56 games for the Muskegon Lumberjacks during the 2014-15 season and served as team captain. The following year, Hamilton played 32 games for the Lumberjacks, two games for the Chicago Steel and ended the season playing 23 games with the Lincoln Stars, including four playoff contests.
"The USHL is a great league, but obviously college is a step faster," Hamilton said. "Guys are stronger, older and they're smarter. I felt like I was a little bit more ready to go back [to the USHL], and perform to my full potential."
Hamilton enjoyed his time with Muskegon, and is thankful for the opportunity they gave him to continue his hockey career.
"Muskegon was a great place to go back to, it's close to home and I was able to see my family every weekend," Hamilton said. "[The Lumberjacks] welcomed me, they gave me a chance to pla, and I did what I could there and hopefully made progress for that program."
The Michigan native is now eagerly anticipating this coming season and is ready to once again face down some of the best players in the country at the collegiate level. He is also looking forward to having consistency back in his life. Knowing where he'll be playing for the next two years is a reassuring feeling.
While Hamilton may be looking forward to having some certainty back in his schedule, fans should be excited to have Hamilton's work ethic and determination as part of the Penn State program. A fearless defenseman, Hamilton has been known to deliver hard hits on the ice.
A self-described two-way defenseman, Hamilton believes he's more offensive-minded than the average defender, but is also capable of playing shut down defense.
"If we're down by a goal I can play offense, but if we're up by a goal I can shut it down and know my role and what to do with the puck and how to keep it out the back of our net," Hamilton said.
Hamilton brings physical play to the Lions' blue line, which will compliment the style of play enjoyed by the program's established defensemen like Vince Pedrie, David Thompson and Kevin Kerr."The last two years I've broken three fingers blocking shots and I haven't missed a game," Hamilton said. "I told the guys here I'd rather be on the [penalty kill] first than the [power play], since I like to block shots and do whatever I can to make the team win. If that means blocking a shot or scoring a big goal, I'm doing whatever I can to put the team on my back and lead us to a victory."