Sean Donaldson recently committed to UConn. The ’01 has spent the past two seasons with the Burnaby Winter Club. Last season he averaged over a goal per game and finished with 66 points. Next season, Donaldson will join the Trail Smoke Eaters. The forward is slated to attend UConn in 2020.
Neutral Zone chatted with Donaldson about his youth hockey experience and his commitment to UConn.
Neutral Zone: How and when did you start playing hockey?
Sean Donaldson: Just started when I was I’d say six years old. My dad just brought me staking when I was three, and then I started playing hockey from there.
NZ: What’s your earliest memory from playing hockey?
SD: My earliest memory is probably my first time out on the ice with one of my best friends, and we’ve played together ever since.
NZ: What was your youth hockey experience like?
SD: My youth hockey experience was pretty good. I moved around a bit but it was good, I was always having fun and developing.
NZ: How did you end up in the BCHL?
SD: I’ve always wanted to play college hockey. It’s been my dream and it’s kind of the best route for me is to play there and then move on to college after that.”
NZ: What kind of exposure did you have to college hockey growing up?
SD: The exposure was good. Our coaches always wanted what was best for us and they would talk to schools for us. It’s a great hockey hub, Western Canada, so there’s a lot of exposure really anywhere you are, but I think it’s really good here.”
NZ: How did you join the Burnaby Winter Club?
SD: I had played there when I was really young, moved there from Vancouver minor.
NZ: How did playing there help your development?
SD: Lot of skill work. We’re always working on our skills and skill development before anything here. It’s been great, the coaches care a lot and that’s what it’s about for everyone in the program, just getting better.”
NZ: During your NCAA recruiting process, what other schools did you visit and talk to?
SD: I didn’t visit anywhere else. I was talking to Yale, Providence, and Bemidji State.
NZ: How did you choose UConn?
SD: It was just the go-to- place for me. I’ve kind of always wanted to play there. They were one of the first schools that I talked to and one of my best friends is also going there. It’s just kind of a no-brainer for me. It’s really the place to be.”
NZ: Why did you always want to go there?
SD: They have a really good coach there, been around for many years. It’s a great atmosphere there, it’s a big school, a lot of sports and very good schooling as well, so that’s huge for me.”
NZ: What’s your best on ice skill?
SD: I think my compete level. I go after when I play and I think that’s my trademark, I compete always.
NZ: What part of your game has improved the most?
SD: I just think I’d say my just my skill development, being able to do a lot more, have more confidence and with skill development. It takes time but once you practice and you put in the work it’s a lot easier in games. I think my overall puck skills.
NZ: What skill are you trying to improve the most?
SD: My skating. Just being able to play at a higher speed. Moving up a level, something that’s important for me is my skating being quicker and faster.”
NZ: What’s the toughest challenge you’ve faced in hockey?
SD: Injuries. In my first year of bantam I didn’t really get to play because I hurt my knee so I was kind of out for that season, and I kind of had my knee, broke my wrist twice and just injuries have been kind of around me a bit.