Omaha AAA 16U defenseman Wilkie signs NAHL tender
January 6, 2017
Omaha AAA 16U team of the North American Prospects Hockey League (NAPHL) are pleased to announce that defenseman Coltan Wilkie has signed an NAHL tender contract with the Corpus Christi IceRays of the NAHL's South Division for the 2017-18 season.
“I’m really excited about it,” said Wilkie on the tender signing. “[Corpus Christi] is a good place. I really like the city, and the program the IceRays have there is great for me and the development of my hockey career down the road so I can get to the highest place I can play.”
Wilkie, 16, has appeared in 17 games with the Omaha AAA 16U team this season, recording 11 goals and 37 assists for 48 points with 16 penalty minutes and two power play goals. The 5-foot-9, 175-pound defenseman leads the NAPHL in assists and sits second in points among all players including forwards and defensemen. He was selected to the NAPHL 16U All-Star Game in early December and was named NAPHL Alex Learning Peak Performer for 16U Defensemen in September, October and December. Wilkie has points in 14 of his first 17 games with 13 of those contests as multi-point games.
The Omaha, Neb., native has garnered attention already in his short stint in the NAPHL from higher levels. Wilkie earned a commitment to Colorado College, a member of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC), for the fall of 2019 back on November 29 after just 13 games with Omaha. The last name Wilkie also brings weight as the son of David Wilkie, a former NHL defenseman and now Head Coach of Omaha program, and the brother of Christopher Wilkie, a sixth-round draft pick by the Florida Panthers and now second-year forward at the University of North Dakota.
Coupled with a long history with the Omaha AAA program, Coltan Wilkie has benefitted from a large pool of knowledge to help develop his game to this point and earn opportunities at the next level.
“I’ve grown up around the program, and I’ve known all the guys who have come through like Chris Wilkie, Wade Allison, and all those guys. They have given me some knowledge to help me learn about the game even more. It’s just a great program, and they expect you to work as hard as you can. Coach Wilkie is a great coach with a tremendous hockey IQ and knows how to play the field to get the right guys out there at the right moments to have the best chances to win."
“Coltan is an extremely high prospect, and we feel fortunate and excited about being able to tender him,” said IceRays head coach Brad Flynn. He has high-end potential already with a commitment to Colorado College, he’s a legitimate USHL prospect, and if we’re fortunate enough to have him next year, he’ll bring a great hockey sense as a solid two-way defenseman that can both move the puck and be sound defensively. Regardless of his age, we’re excited about his hockey sense, compete level and skating ability. He has a big future ahead of him.”
There’s still plenty of season left ahead for WIlkie, and he hopes not only to help his team this season but also prepare for the future.
“I want to finish in the top of the scoring for the NAPHL and help lead my team to a national championship,” said Wilkie. “That’s my biggest goal. Our program hasn’t won one of those yet so that would be a really big deal. I also want to get better so I have the greatest opportunity to play at the next level.”
A tender is a contract, of sorts, a player signs announcing his intentions to play for that particular NAHL team and that NAHL team only. Once a player signs a tender with an NAHL team, his playing rights belong to that team within the NAHL and he may not be recruited by any other NAHL team. Each team is granted ten (10) tenders, which include two (2) tenders exclusively used on players from the NAPHL - plus or minus any trades - which became active on Nov. 1. Tendered players are not eligible for the NAHL draft, which will be held on June 6, 2017.