Sean McWhinnie Commits to Anna Maria College
Sean McWhinnie is the latest member of the Worcester Railers Junior Hockey Club to announce his college commitment. The ’03 forward has made the decision to attend Anna Maria College. The Amcats compete in NCAA Division 3 as an independent program.
McWhinnie had little doubt as to where he was headed for college hockey. “I did not talk to many other schools. I had all my eggs in one basket for Anna Maria.”
Earlier in the season, Railers JHC head coach Sean Bertoni set up a tour for McWhinnie and several other Railers teammates at Anna Maria, located in Paxton, MA, just down the road from the Railers’ Worcester Ice Center home. Shortly after the tour, he applied.
McWhinnie had also been in consistent contact with Anna Maria Assistant Coach Paul Martone.
“I loved everything they had to offer from the hockey side of things,” McWhinnie explains. “The coaches are awesome and the players all seem like they bond well together. It was something I wanted to be a part of. The school has a lot to offer academically as well, with a great fire science program, which really interests me.”
Along with the dream of playing NCAA hockey, McWhinnie also looks to check off the box of becoming a firefighter.
“Ever since I was younger, I have wanted to become a firefighter. Luckily, Anna Maria has a great fire science program that will help me in my journey of becoming a firefighter,” he said.
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McWhinnie, a resident of Natick, MA, first grabbed the attention of coach Bertoni during his sophomore year of high school hockey.
“I watched Sean not only at Boston Hockey Academy, but he first caught my eye his sophomore year at Natick High School,” Bertoni recalls.
After an impressive three-year career at Natick High, McWhinnie moved on to play 18U AAA at Boston Hockey Academy for his senior year.
“Going to BHA was a big switch up for things my senior year,” the 6’2” forward said. “The whole year was preparing us for junior hockey. We traveled a lot, played a ton of hockey, and had fun.”
After a stint in the NCDC didn’t pan out, coach Bertoni offered McWhinnie a chance to play with the Railers. McWhinnie jumped on the opportunity, a decision that he has loved “every second” of.
He credits the Railers for preparing him for college hockey, while also expressing gratitude for the support system within the locker room.
“The Railers definitely played a big role in my development,” he says. “I don’t think I would have been able to commit this year without the help of my coaches and teammates. We have a great group of guys in our locker room and they were super pumped to hear the news.”
Bertoni also believes McWhinnie is ready for the jump to NCAA hockey.
“Sean is a big power forward that came to us in late September,” said Bertoni. “Sean is a smart player that has a history of scoring goals. Although Sean is only a 2003, we feel he is ready to start the next chapter.”
McWhinnie has tallied seven goals and two assists in 31 games with the Railers EHL club this season, including a goal in his debut game.
Much like Bertoni, McWhinnie’s family was also a source of support. Staying close to them was a priority for the forward.
“My family was also supportive throughout this entire season of playing for the Railers, and they were stoked that I committed to Anna Maria,” he said. “They are excited to be able to come to a lot of my games.”
He plans on a summer spent both on the ice and in the gym.
“I am looking forward to living my dream of playing college hockey and making life-long memories with my teammates.”