Brendan Woods' recent departure from the Wisconsin hockey program to sign a contract with the Carolina Hurricanes created an unexpected void on the roster. To fill that slot, Badgers head coach Mike Eaves has elected to bring in center Jedd Soleway from the Penticton Vees out of the British Columbia Hockey League, according to the Wisconsin State Journal.
A 6-foot-3, 215-pound power-forward who plays similar in style to Woods, Soleway committed to the Badgers back in December after visiting Madison for the Alabama-Huntsville series. Soleway committed for the fall of 2014, but was told he could be brought in early if any Badgers left early for pro hockey. Woods signing with the Hurricanes created an opportunity in the upcoming class.
Soleway started the season with the Vernon Vipers, but was later traded to the Vees. In 64 games in the BCHL this season, the Vernon, B.C., native recorded 24 goals and 33 assists for 57 points.
After Soleway gave his verbal pledge to the Badgers in December, I asked Pentiction Vees radio play-by-play man Fraser Rodgers (@VeesVoice) for a brief scouting report.
"(Soleway) is a classic big-body presence that uses his size and strength effectively," Rodgers said. "He's playing center on the Vees' top-line right now and creates a lot of space and time for his skilled wingers."
Rodgers added that he's already got the frame to be successful at the college level.
"(Soleway) isn't shy about going into the dirty areas, and causes a lot of problems for the opposition's goalie and defenders," Rodgers added. "He already has that pro body scouts like to talk about, and I see him being a very good two-way forward in Madison."
Soleway joins committed forwards Grant Besse (Benilde-St. Margaret's), Aidan Cavallini (Brookings, NAHL) and Corbin McGuire (Jersey, ECHL) in the Badgers 2013 recruiting class. Defenseman Tim Davison (Chicago, USHL) and goaltender Gabe Grunwald (Georgetown, OJHL) are also expected to report this fall.
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