NWS grad makes NHL debut

News photo — Lou Reuter Mattias Samuelsson skates for the Northwood School at the Olympic Center on Jan. 17, 2016 during the Huskies annual invitational tournament in Lake Placid.

LAKE PLACID — On Sunday, Northwood School alumni Mattias Samuelsson realized his childhood dream when he made his NHL debut in a 4-2 win for the Buffalo Sabres over the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Pittsburgh Penguins is the team his father Kjell won a Stanley Cup with in 1992.  Mattias spent two years at Northwood School before heading to the National Team Development Program (NTDP) in Ann Arbor, Michigan, for two years.  After the NTDP, Mattias chose to attend Western Michigan University to play under Andy Murray.

Northwood Head Hockey Coach Chadd Cassidy, took a moment to talk about his feelings watching Samuelsson, a 2018 Huskies graduate, take the ice for the Sabres.

“To see Mattias realize his dream of playing in the National Hockey League was a thrill for me,” Cassidy said. “He has worked extremely hard and taken his time with his game to get to this point. After his time at Northwood School, the United States National Team Development Program, Western Michigan University, and the Rochester Americans, he is prepared for a long and successful NHL career. It was a pleasure to watch him grow and prosper.”

Samuelsson’s debut comes just after Northwood has announced that it has joined forces to create the Prep Hockey Conference. The league is set to begin to play in the 2021-22 season. Northwood also recently announced the renaming of the two teams from Juniors to Prep and Prep to Varsity.

“Our students have aspirations to achieve at the highest level,” said Huskies Director of Athletics Gino Riffle. “To see Mattias do this so soon after leaving Northwood reflects the dedication and focus he has.  Watching Mattias see his dream of playing in the NHL come true is an example to all of our current and incoming students that the Northwood experience helps motivate all of us to chase our dreams.”

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