U SPORTS MHKY: Boka Leaves Windsor Spitfires, Commits To Queen’s Gaels In The OUA

Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on ThePuckAuthority.com on June 18th.

Toronto,ON- After starting off rather quietly with just five recruitments to start the season, Queen’s University broke ground on Wednesday with their sixth addition in right-winger Luke Boka. This was first reported by Victor Findlay of Sauga 960 who said that the school and the OA forward had agreed to terms with a verbal commitment. 

As Findlay goes on to mention, the deal in place allows the former Spitfire to join the Queen’s Gaels for the upcoming season. Queen’s has been rather quiet in terms of stocking up for the future as rumours have loomed for the past several weeks, but only so much to show for those talks.

The deal between Boka and Queen’s was formally announced by the school on Wednesday. With this commitment now booked, the Windsor forward joins the OUA East, a compact division with the league’s silver medalists.

Terry Wilson/OHL Images

As Boka joins the OUA, he becomes the Gaels’ sixth recruitment for next season. Looking at his time with the Spitfires where the 5’11 right-winger made his junior debut, the forward played in 335 games between postseason play and the regular season. During this five-year time frame, the 21-year-old scored 60 goals and 80 assists for 140 points. With a plus/minus rating of 15 over five full seasons, Boka racked up as well a whopping total of 183 penalty minutes.

In a statement from the right-handed shooter after committing to the Gaels on Tuesday, Boka said with regards to next season, “I chose Queen’s to get the best of both worlds on and off the ice.”

Boka, an OHL veteran, joined the Windsor Spitfires back in 2015, just five months after having been selected 95th overall in the draft’s fifth round. Looking at the numbers he amassed, the future Gael collected 80 assists, this totalling up to 140 points.

Terry Wilson/OHL Images

Seen as a proven winner, Boka opened the season as captain alongside Chris Playfair, Cole Purboo and Connor Corcoran. Joining the Queen’s Gaels hockey program, it’s worth noting that he becomes one of two forwards with major junior experience being added to the team’s roster.

Adding to his presence at Queen’s, Boka joins the Faculty of Arts to help lay a foundation off the ice for the future. Speaking of Boka’s commitment on Wednesday, head coach Brett Gibson said, “Luke, from the day I met him, was a guy I really wanted in our Program here at Queen’s. He had to update a course to get into our school, that showed me his commitment level and character. Luke, is a throwback and a proven winner. He is not afraid to make the plays that win hockey games that do not always end up on the game sheet. I see him as a part of our leadership group in the years to come.”

When discussing the elimination process, trimming down choices and landing on Queen’s, Boka said, “Well I couldn’t get into the program, so I had to go in hard and then, there’s just a few factors for my academics in high school weren’t the best, so this year, I had to upgrade a couple courses and that’s where I fell.”

Terry Wilson/OHL Images

Looking at his last OHL season, Boka scored 16 goals and 19 assists in 59 games played. This made for 36 points registered to go along with his 33 penalty minutes. Speaking of which, his 2019-20 campaign marked his third consecutive where he scored 30+ points. The first time he hit that plateau was in his third year in Windsor, racking up 40 points.

As reported by Victor Findlay in March, Thomas Stevenson’s been expected to be joined by fellow teammate and Windsor captain Luke Boka. Boka was the Spitfires captain for the last two years in his fourth and fifth seasons. In doing so, he led the hockey club with help from Chris Playfair and right-winger Cole Purboo.

Boka will join the school’s veteran winger group alongside the likes of Jaren Burke, Alex Row and Jaden Lindo. Joining Luke Boka going to Queen’s from the OHL are Jacob Paquette of the Peterborough Petes, forward Calvin Martin and defensemen Jakob Brahaney. Alongside defensemen Thomas Stevenson, Anthony Popovich has committed as well.

Luke Durda/OHL Images

In a final train of thought on Thursday, Boka said in a statement to 49 Sports, “I’m very excited to be apart of an amazing school and hockey program at Queen’s University.”

At this time, it is still expected that forward Jonathan Yantsis will commit to the hockey club, however, it is possible that might be held off on until the conclusion of the NHL Entry Draft.

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