Colorado Rubber

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Denver native, Evolution, Tigers grad Lindberg commits to NCAA D-III Lebanon Valley for fall of ’23


It’s amazing what hard work and being in the right place at the right time can do for a talented hockey player.

Ian Lindberg has found that out this season playing for the EHL’s New Jersey 87’s as the Denver native and skilled defenseman recently committed to NCAA Division III Lebanon Valley College for the fall of 2023.

Lebanon Valley is located in Annville, Pa., roughly 90 minutes northwest of Philadelphia.

Lindberg is in his second season with the 87’s program after finishing out the 2021-22 year at the Eastern Hockey League Premier level. He saw some time with the 87’s at the EHL level last year, but has returned as a full-time player at the top level of the program this season.

Overall, Lindberg has five points (goal, four assists) across 54 career games in the EHL and eight points (two goals, six assists) through 12 total games in the EHLP.

“Ian is the epitome of what we talk about in terms of hard work and ‘coachability,'” said 87’s head coach and general manager Adam Houli. “He worked very hard in his first year but still needed to make strides in the offseason. He took everything we said to heart and applied himself. He came back and was unbelievable for us. I am so happy for him. He is a fantastic player and an even better human.”

That hard work that Houli referenced was definitely recognized when Lindberg was named to the EHL South All-Star Team that took on Lebanon Valley back in late October. It’s a safe assumption that the veteran defenseman caught the attention of the LVC coaching staff that night, and he’s beyond excited to join the Dutchmen next fall.

“It feels great,” said Lindberg. “I’m really excited to spend my next four years at Lebanon Valley. I’m really impressed with the coaching staff they have and their great facilities. I definitely couldn’t have done it without the 87’s and Adam (Houli). He’s been great at pushing me to the next level and helping me continue to get better as a hockey player.”

Lindberg went on to talk about the exhibition matchup at Hershey Park Arena, and already knowing one of his future teammates in Dylan Gutierrez, a former member of the 87’s.

“I spoke with Dylan during my visit there and he had nothing but good things to say about Lebanon Valley, and it’s great because you get a little bit of an insight about the transition from juniors to the college level,” said Lindberg. “I’ve grown in terms of trusting the process and basically trusting my coaches. I feel that I have developed in terms of seeing the puck and seeing the ice differently and playing a smarter game. That’s what I want to do – continue that growth heading into Lebanon Valley.”

During his youth hockey days, Lindberg spent time with the Colorado Evolution and Colorado Springs Tigers.

Photo/Dan Hickling/Hickling Images

— Matt Mackinder

(December 27, 2022)

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