About a month ago, ’02 F John Evans committed to RPI. Like Nick Ardanaz, he was also a UNH commit who de-committed after they tried to delay him a year. He also played 3 years of junior hockey and is on the same team as Ardanaz, the West Kelowna Warriors in the BCHL. The two of them are best friends; they first played together when they were 10 years old. They then played together for all of high school and 2 years for the Warriors. It’s no surprise that they want to stick together at the college level. Evans is also a great player. This season he had 19 goals, 29 assists and 48 points in 47 games. He showed his clutch genes in the playoffs, where he elevated his game with 9 goals, 8 assists and 17 points in 14 games, leading the Warriors in scoring. He wore the “A” this season, and he also wore the “A” as a 17 year old rookie, which shows rare maturity and leadership. Rookies in junior hockey are almost never named a captain.
Evans is a great player who thrives despite his size (5’10” and 160 LBs is what he’s listed at). He has great hands and skill, which is his main strength. He really likes the puck on his stick and is always trying to make plays when he has it. He is very quick and speedy with a good shot to complement his speed and skill. With his skating and skill, West Kelowna used him as a zone entry machine. They’d frequently get him the puck in the neutral zone and he was great at entering the zone with possession. He can play on both the PP and PK as he was on the top unit for both and excelled in both roles.
Evans will be enrolling this fall, and he is capable of contributing in all situations right away. His well-rounded offensive game is something RPI needs after losing a lot of scoring from last year. With his ability to kill penalties in addition to his offensive skills, he is talented enough and ready to play a middle 6 role as a freshman. Over his time at RPI, he should be a dynamic forward with the potential to be one of the ECAC’s best forwards. We can’t wait to watch him in the Cherry and White next season. Congratulations to John and his family!