“He’s been great for us,” Houle continued. “He’s been great defensively and he’s been great offensively. He replaced some big bodies that we lost last year on defence and he’s taking a lot of minutes.”
Walcott’s story doesn’t begin there. A child of a recent separation at 14, he stopped playing organized hockey in pee wee, opting instead to play at his high school so it would be cheaper on his parents. After five years with his high school team, He joined his father in Chicago, where he spent his summers as a kid, to play high school hockey there. After one year there, Lindenwood University offered him a place on their team, and he jumped at the chance.
“I got looked at by Lindenwood University,” Walcott said. “They offered me a spot. I decided to take it because it’s university [hockey] and I always wanted to play there. Unfortunately, it’s not high quality. It’s not NCAA hockey, it was just club hockey.”
He had 13 points in 33 games for Lindenwood last season.
“My assistant coach and J-F Houle were in contact, and my name came up. They invited me to camp. I decided to come here because I live at home, basically. It was one of the major keys to the decision. Also, I wanted to get seen by scouts and here is a much bigger opportunity for that.”
“We invited him to our camp and gave him a chance,” Houle said. “He sure surprised everybody.”