Robbie Meadows, the 20 year old goaltender for the Dells Ducks heads into league play Friday night coming off of an amazing month.
The stretch actually started with a loss – a tough 3-2 decision at Hudson, and ended with back to back defeats (4-3 and 5-2) against the Twin Cities Northern Lights.
But in between were a trio of standout efforts, including a pair of shutouts – a 13-0 win over Edina and a 7-0 win at Rochester along with another 6-1 win at home to Edina.
Meadows played the first game of the team’s week-long college tour at Concordia, and then jetted out of Milwaukee with his family Sunday morning to tour Framingham State University in Massachusetts.
By the time he returned, Meadows had become the first player this season to commit to a school beginning in the fall of 2014.
Capping off a great month, Meadows discovered after his return he had been named the Goaltender of the Month for the Minnesota Division of the Minnesota Junior Hockey League.
“I didn’t know anything about it (the school), when I heard about them,” said Meadows at the Poppy Waterman Ice Arena Monday. “I talked to the coach on the phone – we did a conference call with Coach Bill (Zaniboni, the Ducks’ head coach) and they said they were interested in me coming in, starting all four years. So, that sparks a green light in my head and I just decided to schedule a tour. I went to see the campus and I fell in love with it.”
Meadows said he was impressed with the campus and liked the fact it was small. “That’s what I want. I don’t want to be lost, going to class. It’s a small school, only about 7,000 students.”
Meadows lives in the Detroit area of Michigan now, but said he can be right at home on the east coast as well.
“Yeah, I was actually born in Maryland. I lived there for a few years. I like that area a lot. I like Boston,” said Meadows who’s junior hockey travels carried him from Michigan to Montana and finally to the Dells in Wisconsin – all with coach Zaniboni.
Meadows earned high praise from his performance at a late summer junior tournament in the Boston area, but he wasn’t sure if that was where the college scouts noticed him or not.
Meadows said he liked what he heard when they spoke about the hockey program there.
“They always talked about effort, not winning,” said Meadows. “As long as you work hard, everything is going to go right, and they’re in first place in a tough conference.”
Meadows will study Business Administration while at the school and work toward his goal of one day owning his own golf course.
“I work at a golf course in the off season, in the pro shop.”
The Goaltender of the Month selection was the cherry on top of a fine stretch for the goaltender, but he said he was not expecting it.
“Actually, I was really surprised,” said Meadows. “I didn’t know until yesterday and I was surprised.”
Looking back, Meadows had no bad league outings in the month – or really this season so far. He said he couldn’t remember any either, but for a different reason.
“You know, I can’t either (think of any bad outings), but that’s because I forget games so quickly,” said Meadows with a smile.
The focus now returns to the league games through the remainder of the season and the bar is set high for Meadows and all of the players.
“This is still my team. I am still with the Ducks,”
Meadows will be the third goaltender for the Ducks to play at the Division 3 level. Matt Rowe who played with the Ducks in the team’s inaugural season – 2011-12 is now a sophomore at Bethel in Minnesota and John Sellie Hanson, a Ducks player with both Rowe and Meadows (2011-12, 2012-13) is a freshman at Hamline University.
Ironically, Sellie-Hanson picked up Hamline’s first win of the season against the same Bethel team this past weekend.