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O’Malley’s future at Aurora U.

There are not a lot of opportunities to play college hockey in the Chicagoland area, but Victoria Grizzlies forward Shawn O’Malley has found a way to get there for next season.

O’Malley will play for the Spartans of Aurora University, about 60 km from the Windy City, starting in the fall. Aurora is one of two NCAA Div. III programs in the area with Lake Forest being the other. There are no Div. I programs in the state of Illinois.

A 5-foot-11, 185-pound native of Ann Arbor, Mich., O’Malley came to the Grizzlies part way through last season and suited up for 47 games in the most recent campaign. He had eight goals and 22 assists to go along with 30 penalty minutes this season. He totaled nine goals and 24 assists in 60 career BCHL games added two goals and eight helpers in 30 playoff contests.

At Aurora, O’Malley will join a Spartans team that competes in the Div. III Northern Collegiate Hockey Association (NCHA) along with Lake Forest, Adrian, Finlandia, Lawrence, Concordia University-Wisconsin, Marian, Trine, College of St. Scholastica, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Northland and St. Norbert – the defending national champions.

O’Malley is the first BCHL recruit to Aurora from this season and the Spartans had no BCHL alums on the roster last year.