Sean Keating, a 1994 birth year goalie from Smithtown, New York, kicked of the new year with some good news. The high school senior and starter for the Pittsburgh Jr. A Penguins NA3HL squad was tendered back on Jan 19th by the Corpus Christi IceRays of the NAHL. While maintaining a consistent goals against average under 3 and a .900+ save percentage in the 3HL, Sean has been a solid contributor to the team this season.
What could be better for a net minder striving to reach the next level? Well, it did get better. Early this week, the Jr Penguins were asked to Trade Keating to Corpus Christi so they could get a better look at him while practicing with the NAHL team. Then, to top things off, Sean was asked to start with some on the job training immediately as he was inserted into the lineup on Friday night against the Odessa Jackalopes.
In his NAHL debut, Sean shut out the opposition in the first period facing 10 shots, but eventually fell to the Jackalopes 6-1 facing 33 shots overall.
The last couple weeks for Keating were hectic to say the least. Sean signed his tender on Thursday January 19th, played on Sunday, January 22nd in a 3HL game in Pittsburgh against the Metro Jets, boarded a plane to Texas on Tuesday January 24th so he could practiced all week with Corpus Christi before starting for the IceRays against South Division rival Odessa in front of 3,800 fans.
With interest in a handful of other players on the Jr A Penguins squad by several NAHL teams, the club is hopeful to have another promising year in player advancement. Last year, the Jr A Penguins had five players Drafted with each successfully making the jump to compete at a higher level in the NAHL, CJHL and/or USHL.