Those memories included championships.
Perunovich, who grew up about 90 minutes from Duluth, helped his home state team to consecutive national championships as a freshman and a sophomore. The Bulldogs sought to win a third consecutive national title for the first time since Michigan from 1951-53. They were ranked No. 5 in the nation when the NCAA season was canceled because of the coronavirus.
“I genuinely think our team had a really good shot at winning it again this year,” Perunovich said. “The feeling in the locker room was kind of the same as last year. We had leadership, a good team and we were closely bonded. I was really looking forward to trying to make history with UMD.”
Now, Perunovich is set to begin the next stage of his career, as he signed a two-year entry-level contract with the St. Louis Blues in March. He was selected 45th overall in the 2018 NHL Draft.
Sandelin compared the 5-foot-10, 175-pound Perunovich to the likes of a pair of 5-foot-9 standout NHL defensemen in Boston’s Torey Krug and Jared Spurgeon of the Minnesota Wild.
“Obviously, I’m not going to say he’s Torey Krug right now, but I think he’s in that same mold, and with the game today, those guys can flourish,” Sandelin said. “There’s such a calmness and poise to his game and Scotty’s vision is as good as I’ve had here. I think he’s going to a great organization that will help him grow as a player.”
Perunovich is looking forward to his time with the Blues organization.
“It has definitely been my dream for a long time to play in the NHL,” Perunovich said. “I really like the organization, all of the guys I’ve talked to and everyone who works there. It’s kind of the same feeling I had when I committed to Duluth. I feel like I’m in good hands and I trust the organization.”
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.