The Steinbach Pistons are excited to announce that graduating defenceman Mark Wilson has committed to the York University Lions of U Sports for the upcoming season.
Wilson has spent his junior A career with the MJHL’s Winnipeg Blues and Selkirk Steelers, but came to Steinbach during this season in a trade with Selkirk at the beginning of December. He fit in right away, bringing veteran experience and stability to the Pistons blue line during the team’s playoff run.
“I’m super happy to go to a program that not only has a great hockey team but is also a great school, “ Wilson said of his commitment. “I can’t wait to meet my new teammates and get my university career started.”
“We’re certainly excited for him, and I think it’s a real good fit,” Pistons Head Coach and GM Paul Dyck said of Wilson. “There’s a lot of upside in his game, and it was a pleasure to watch his development since we acquired him.”
He notched 26 points this season between the Steelers and Pistons, but 19 of those came with Steinbach (4 goals, 15 assists). He was even better in the playoffs, scoring 8 points (2 goals, 6 assists) in 15 MJHL playoff games, notching 5 assists in the ANAVET Cup series win, and had 3 assists in the 2018 RBC Cup.
Wilson said that his main focus coming to the Pistons was to lead by example, but called it a seamless transition. “It was easy (transitioning to Steinbach) having known a lot of the players before coming to the team,” he said. “The guys spend so much time together at the rink and away from the rink that we all grew close fast.”
At the Pistons Awards banquet after the RBC Cup, Dyck had high praise for Wilson by calling him the most underrated Junior A defenceman in Western Canada.
“When people see Mark play for the first time I don’t think they appreciate the depth and the details to his game, and the value he brings to his teammates and team,” Dyck elaborated. “With each passing game, the respect he had amongst his teammates and us as a staff continued to grow. When you watch him more and more, you realize that he’s a special player that does a lot of things right and consistently makes the right decisions.”
Wilson calls his tenure with the Pistons as one of the most fun times he’s had playing junior hockey. “Playing in Steinbach taught me so many things on the ice that helped me elevate my game to a new level,” he said. “Off the ice, I created many relationship with teammates, billets, coaches, and members of the community that will last a lifetime.”
“We certainly wish him the best at the next level,” Dyck continued. “I think he’s going to make that adjustment really quickly, and he’s going to thrive at that level and be a great addition for York.”