Pittsburgh forward Black makes college commitment
July 15, 2015
By Jordan Horrobin, The Post
Despite hockey’s growth nationally and across the globe, it’s still a small world.
Cody Black, a forward coming to Athens to play for Ohio University coach Sean Hogan this fall, used a tight-knit connection to learn about the Bobcats.
Black knows Ohio assistant coach Kyle Schussler — who is entering his second year under Hogan — because the two played hockey together in a Thursday night league in Pittsburgh. Schussler also dated someone from a family close to Black’s.
So when the father of Black’s family friend told the 20-year-old about Ohio, Schussler was right there to recruit him. “It was funny, it was Kyle that was an assistant coach there and I reached out to him and just asked a few questions about everything,” Black said. “The more he told me about the program and whatnot, and introduced me to coach Hogan, it just kind of fell into place.”
Playing for the NA3HL's Pittsburgh Vengeance, under the same head coach as former Bobcat defenseman Mike Kretz, Black put together impressive offensive numbers. He scored 41 goals and 94 points in 93 games in his two seasons with the Vengeance. He also appeared in back-to-back NA3HL Top Prospect Tournaments in 2014 and 2015.
Joining an Ohio team already with offensive stalwarts such as Michael Harris and Joey Breslin, however, Black is ready to fill whichever role Hogan needs him in.
“I consider myself a hard worker,” Black said. “So if they need someone to forecheck, grind it out, even though I’m a small dude, I’ll work my butt off to get the puck.”
A native of Wexford, Pennsylvania, Black had a couple of NCAA D-III programs from the Boston area on his radar, as well as other American Collegiate Hockey Association teams from his home state. But after talks with Schussler, two visits to Ohio’s campus and Bird Arena, Black knew he’d be lacing up for the Bobcats in the fall.
“Oh it’s unbelievable. You just feel right at home,” he said. “And after the second time I went there, it was just like, how could I not come here?”
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