Nick DiPaolo of the Ontario Junior Hockey League’s Wellington Dukes  (photo credit – Shawn Muir | OJHL Images)  has confirmed his commitment to join the NCAA Division I Niagara University Purple Eagles in Lewiston, NY .

DiPaolo, 17, in his first season with the Dukes after spending last season at Stanstead College in Quebec, has been a key contributor for the Dukes this season. He also played for Blyth Academy and the Burlington Eagles AAA organization.

DiPaolo was a ninth-round pick of the London Knights in the 2022 Ontario Hockey League U16 draft.

The Burlington product has nine goals – including three game winners – and 14 assists in 46 games. He scored a goal in the OJHL’s In-Stat/Hudl Prospects Game in Collingwood Jan. 13.

“Proud of Nick’s deserved scholarship,” Kent Lewis, Wellington’s Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations, said on the Dukes’ website. “He is coming along very nicely as a first-year player and, as recognized by Niagara, has a promising future. We look forward to enhancing his progress.”

DiPaolo said choosing Niagara was an easy decision. 

“My family and I were given an amazing opportunity to tour the Niagara campus and its facilities with an inspiring senior player,” he said. “We had a chance to meet the coaching staff before and after watching the Purple Eagles play.

“Coach (Jason) Lammers and his staff believe in each and every one of their players. They focus on the person, the student, and the player. With this philosophy. I knew it was the perfect fit for me.”

“I want to thank Coach Lewis, his staff, the Wellington Dukes organization, my billet families and all my teammates for believing in me. We’ve been having a very successful season while coming together as a new team and I couldn’t have asked for a better group of guys to play with. The best thing about playing for the Wellington Dukes has been the incredible support from the community.”

OJHL grads on this year’s roster at Niagara include a pair of award-winning players from last season: Jack Richard (Burlington) and  Aron Jessli (Pickering).

Congratulations to Nick and best of luck in the OJHL and NCAA!

The OJHL has had more than 45 NCAA Division I scholarship commitments already this season.

Check out all our commitments here: https://www.ojhl.ca/committments/

with files from the Wellington Dukes