By Jill Saftel, News Staff
With the start of a new college hockey season a few months away, Northeastern is sending one of its leaders to the rinks of the NHL.
With two years of NCAA eligibility remaining, assistant captain and forward Ludwig Karlsson signed a two-year, entry-level contract with the Ottawa Senators July 26.
After a standout freshman year in which he led the Huskies in scoring with 26 points, Karlsson’s sophomore season was cut short due to a Dec. 29, 2012 injury during a game at Harvard University.
“It’s never easy when you lose a team leader,” head coach Jim Madigan said. “It’s especially difficult when you lose a player as someone as talented and gifted as Karlsson. Yet, with such a strong crop of forwards coming in coupled with our top scorers returning, I’m confident this team will still be successful.”
Karlsson will be joining former teammate, goaltender Chris Rawlings as a pro. Rawlings signed a one-year AHL (American Hockey League) deal with the Portland Pirates on July 19.
“Chris will always be considered a great ambassador for Northeastern hockey,” Madigan said. “I am confident he will have a successful professional career given how dedicated I know he is to improving every day. Hopefully Chris will be able to prove himself this year and turn some heads.”
During his tenure in red and black, Rawlings earned a spot in the NU record books as the program’s shutout record holder. His 11 career shutouts beat Brad Thiessen’s previous school record of nine. He had broken Thiessen’s record with his 10th shutout on Nov. 10, 2012 against the University of Alabama-Huntsville and upped the ante with his 11th against the University of Massachusetts-Amherst on Nov. 30, 2012.
Upon his graduation from Northeastern this May, Rawlings headed to the pros and contributed in Portland after appearing in net for the Idaho Steelheads of the ECHL, a league regarded as a tier below the AHL. He headed to Portland after garnering an amateur tryout contract and played in forty minutes of the team’s final regular season contest.
The new-look Huskies, with 10 freshmen skaters, kick off their 2013-14 effort with a non-conference matchup against Dalhousie University on Oct. 5. Their Hockey East competition slate begins on Nov. 1 against crosstown rival Boston College.