Unionville alum signs contract with NHL team

A Unionville High alum and ice hockey superstar made headlines in January when he became a candidate for the prestigious Hobey Baker award, the hockey equivalent of football’s Heisman trophy.

Ryan Lohin, a 2014 UHS graduate, has been playing ice hockey at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell.

Despite a strong showing, Ryan Lohin, 22, of Pennsbury Township, didn’t get enough votes to make the top 10, but he had no time for disappointment. Instead, with what could be described as lightning speed, he earned a different reason to celebrate: being signed by a NHL team.

Lohin, a 2014 Unionville graduate and junior at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, inked a two-year, entry-level contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning, the team announced last week.

For Lohin, who grew up in Chadds Ford Knoll, the news represented a lifelong dream. “I was very excited,” he said, immediately expressing gratitude to his family, friends and “everyone who has supported me along the way.”

The six-foot, 195-pound, left-shooting forward had been a seventh-round draft pick of the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2016. Lohin said the team had kept in touch with him and reportedly liked what they saw of his college play.

Lohin, team captain as a junior, skated in 33 regular season games during the 2018-19 season with the University of Massachusetts-Lowell River Hawks, posting 12 goals and 27 points to go along with a plus-7 rating. He led his team for points and was third for goals and assists. He also tied for second place with three power-play goals.

In addition to his athletic prowess, Lohin boastsa 3.85 GPA and will graduate in three years with a bachelor’s degree in finance and management. Already accepted into the UMass Lowell master’s program in finance, he will put that quest on ice -- for now.

He has temporarily relocated to New York state, where he will finish the season with the Syracuse Crunch, the American Hockey League development affiliate of the Tampa Bay Lightning. While there, he will be juggling his coursework to ensure that he gets his college degree this spring.

Next season, he’s slated to attend the Lightning’s main camp, which he described as “essentially a tryout with all of the NHL players.” He said he expects to play with the Syracuse Crunch next season.

Margie Lohin, Ryan’s mother, said she and her husband, Dave, couldn’t be prouder. She acknowledged that they both made sacrifices to get the time and money needed to enable their son to follow his passion. His older sister, Danielle, a dentist hygienist, lovingly issued repeated warnings to make sure he wore a guard to protect his teeth.

But it was her son’s commitment that made the difference, his mother said.  “He really deserves all the credit,” she insisted. “He knew what he wanted, and he went for it.”

Local ice hockey enthusiasts said they believed that Lohin might represent the first NHL player signed from the Unionville school district, if not from Chester County.

Margie Lohin said that when she and her husband got the news about the contract, words failed her. “I just started shaking,” she said. “It was unbelievable … What he’s accomplished is amazing.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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