Former Great North Midget League scoring champion Alain Joanette will return to Chelmsford this summer as an NCAA champion.
A junior at St Norbert College in Depere (Wisconsin), Joanette and the remainder of the Green Knights captured the NCAA Division III Ice Hockey champion on Sunday, edging Aidan College (Michigan) 4-3.
St Norbert advanced to the championship final in Minneapolis after slipping past Norwich University 3-2 in semi-final action Friday, while Adrian upended Oswego State 5-3 in the remaining semi-final.
Joanette finished the 2010-2011 season with seven goals and 12 assists in 27 games, finishing as the team's eighth leading scorer. He also finished tied for third on the team with three power play goals this year.
An undersized forward with a scoring touch, the Chelmsford native was well travelled through his junior career, playing in Pembroke, Prince George (B.C.), Cornwall and other outposts, as well as suiting up as an affiliated player with the Rayside Balfour Sabrecats.
He was named as MVP of the Great North Midget League at the conclusion of the 2003-04 campaign, after ending the regular season tied for the league scoring title with Gary Welch of Kirkland Lake.
Saturday's victory marked the school's first championship since 2008 and helped avenge a heart-breaking 2-1 double overtime loss to Norwich in the title game last year.