UND’s leading scorer has turned pro.
Sophomore forward Brock Nelson signed a three-year contract with the New York Islanders on Tuesday, giving up his final two years of college eligibility.
Nelson led the Sioux with 28 goals and 47 points last season, while manning the left wing on a prolific top line.
The Warroad, Minn., product and first-round pick of the Islanders finishes his college career with 68 points in 84 games.
Nelson’s three-year contract will kick in next year. He’ll play the rest of this season on an amateur tryout contract with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League. Bridgeport is the top minor-league affiliate of the Islanders.
“Would like to thank everyone who was part of a great time here at UND,” Nelson posted on Twitter. “Was not an easy decision.”
While the Sioux lost Nelson, they did get word from two juniors who decided to return to school.
Forward Carter Rowney, who received free agent offers, and defenseman Andrew MacWilliam, who had interest from the Toronto Maple Leafs, informed the coaching staff that they will play for UND next season.
The Sioux are still awaiting decisions from juniors Danny Kristo, Aaron Dell and Corban Knight.
UND lost two players early to NHL contracts last summer — juniors Jason Gregoire and Brett Hextall. Gregoire played the season with the St. John’s IceCaps in the AHL and Hextall played for the Portland Pirates in the AHL.