Forward Signs with Hometown Team
For the second time within a week, a former Waterloo Black Hawk has signed a National Hockey League contract, with Saturday’s announcement by the Chicago Blackhawks that Vince Hinostroza has decided to leave Notre Dame to play pro hockey.
The deal comes days after the Anaheim Ducks induced Brandon Montour to forgo his remaining eligibility at the University of Massachusetts.
Hinostroza was the top scorer for Notre Dame over the winter, recording 44 points in 42 appearances during his sophomore season. His 33 assists were among college hockey’s best totals when the Fighting Irish were eliminated from postseason play last weekend. Hockey East named the forward from Bartlett, Illinois to the conference’s All-Hockey East First Team. During his college career, Hinostroza was a point-per-game player with 19 goals and 57 assists in 76 appearances.
Starting with the Waterloo Black Hawk as a 16-year-old, Hinostroza played in 151 regular season games, recording 53 goals and 73 assists from 2010 through 2013. His assist count (tied-eighth) and point total (126, tied-ninth) both put him among the club’s career junior-era leaders. Hinostroza’s tenure with Waterloo included the Hawks’ run to the 2012 Clark Cup Championship Series, Waterloo’s silver medal at the 2012 Junior Club World Cup in Russia, and a then franchise record-tying 39-win season in 2012/13.
Following the 2011/12 campaign, Chicago selected Hinostroza during the sixth round of the NHL Draft, 169th overall.
Hinostroza and Jan-Mikael Juutilainen are the only Waterloo players to ever be drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks; no player with Waterloo ties has ever appeared for the Original Six franchise.
Three of the four Waterloo alumni who have appeared in NHL games this season similarly left the NCAA after their sophomore seasons: Joe Pavelski (Wisconsin Badgers/San Jose Sharks), Craig Smith (Wisconsin/ Nashville Predators), and J.T. Brown (Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs/Tampa Bay Lightning). Eriah Hayes signed with San Jose following his senior season at Minnesota State-Mankato and made his NHL debut the following winter.