Fresh off of winning a Thorne Cup with the Wichita Jr. Thunder, Matt McClelland will be joining the Ogden Mustangs for the 2017-18 season.
McClelland won the title on Ogden’s home ice last April, as the Mustangs hosted the five-day finals event. The arena, organization, fans and city made an impression.
“It feels good to be a part of the best organization in the league and also be able to play in front of the best fans in the league,” McClelland said. “I am very excited to get the season going.”
Mustang fans remember the McClelland name well, as it was Matt’s older brother and teammate Jack who singlehandedly helped end the Mustangs’ 2016-17 season in the Thorne Cup semis. With the Mustangs leading 2-1 in the game, Jack scored a natural hat trick in the third period to ice the game and give the Thunder a 4-2 victory, knocking the Mustangs out.
Matt had a stellar playoff himself, averaging a point per game for the Thunder. He had standout performances in a series-clinching victory in El Paso, where he scored two goals and one assist to send the team to the finals. He scored the game-winner in the Thunder’s round robin finals 2-1 victory over the Idaho Jr. Steelheads. In the regular season, he had 38 points in 52 games, finishing tied for seventh in team scoring. It was his third season with the Thunder.
McClelland rose to the occasion in key moments. Five of his 19 goals were game winners. That was the fourth most on the team.
Born in 1997, this will be McClelland’s final season of junior hockey eligibility. At 6-feet-1-inch and 170 pounds, he’s a two-way forward who isn’t afraid of getting his nose dirty in the gritty areas. The Barrie, Ontario native will look to pick up right where he left off last season.
Winning is in McClelland’s blood. His father is four-time Stanley Cup winner Kevin McClelland, who played for the Edmonton Oilers in the 1980s alongside Wayne Gretzky.
McClelland joins Matus Spodniak as the lone two players announced thus far on this seasons roster.