WALTHAM, Mass. – Bentley University incoming freshman Jakov Novak (Riverside, Ontario/Janesville) became the hockey program's first ever NHL draft pick on Saturday when he was selected by the Ottawa Senators in the 2018 NHL Draft.
Novak, a forward, was selected in the 7th round and 188th overall. He was one of just 67 NCAA players selected, either current or recruits, to be drafted over the weekend, and the only from Atlantic Hockey.
The Riverside, Ontario native is coming off a huge season in Janesville in the NAHL, where he was named the league's MVP and the Forward of the Year. He led all NAHL players during the regular season in points (73), goals (32) and plus/minus (+41), while leading the Jets to the divisional playoffs where he tallied a further 4 goals and 6 assists to bring his season totals to 36-47-83.
Novak, who still plans to attend Bentley in the fall, said in comments to the Windsor (Ontario) Star, "I've got four years in college and they can see me develop or pull me out if they see what they like."
"At the end of the day, I know a lot of guys enter the NHL who are not drafted," Novak said. "Even if I hadn't gotten drafted, I know it doesn't define me. I just keep the same routine and keep playing for the love of the game."