Atlantic Hockey Rookie of the Year Taylor Holmstrom has decided to transfer from Mercyhurst to Penn State.
Holmstrom joins a sprinkling of other players doing the same, including fellow Laker Nate Jensen, though he is the biggest catch for Penn State so far. Holmstrom was recruited by Bowling Green and Dartmouth, and lived up to expectations in his freshman season.
The pair is taking advantage of loophole to NCAA rules, that allows them to play for Penn State's club program this coming season instead of sitting out the NCAA's mandatory one-year waiting period that normally applies to transfers.
That news is good for Penn State, but damages Mercyhurst.
"It's terrible. We were totally blindsided by this," Mercyhurst coach Rick Gotkin said.
"I am heartbroken. I love those two kids. I thought we had a great relationship. We like these kids very much and were looking forward to having them."
Guy Gadowsky, who was named Penn State's first coach, will be coaching the club team. Penn State becomes a full-fledged NCAA Division I team in 2012-13, starting out as an independent before joining the Big Ten in 2013-14.
Holmstrom, who played in the USHL for Omaha and Youngstown, had 9 goals and 33 points last season for the Lakers.The transfers have raised concern among some in the college hockey community, particularly Penn State's ability to take advantage of the transfer-period loophole to lure players.