A trio of former Humboldt Broncos were part of the largest United States college hockey program last winter.
Andrew McCann, Dante Raposo, and Justin Session all played for an Adrian College hockey team in 2020-21. The Michigan school has men’s hockey squads in the NCAA Division III and the American Collegiate Hockey Association Division I, II, and III ranks. As well, the Bulldogs have women’s teams in NCAA Division III and ACHA Division I and II.
“Here at Adrian College, we have such a unique build-up of teams, and having so many teams that are also all winners is even better,” McCann said. “All of the hockey teams spend lots of time at the rink, which helps us all get to see each other. One of the best feelings is playing a game at home and seeing all your classmates and other teams watching you represent Adrian College.”
Adrian is a city of about 20,600 people approximately 72 miles by car southwest of Detroit. Adrian College had an enrollment of 1,677 during the last school year.
“I knew Adrian College was the school for me the second I set foot on campus,” McCann said. “Since then, I have had nothing but amazing experiences both on and off the ice. Adrian College's class sizes and hands-on help is what make this college so special and unique. Playing hockey here has been nothing short of a dream come true; coming from Canada, it has always been my dream to experience an American college.”
McCann, Raposo and Session all spent some time developing their games – and themselves with the Broncos. McCann said he had an unbelievable experience with the team due to the people he met here.
“I had never experienced being on a team that was so deeply rooted in the community,” he said. “Everyone within the town was so passionate about hockey and especially their hometown Broncos. Wes and Carla Clement and their kids – Jaya, Rowen, and Madden – were my family away from home. They all accepted me with open arms and are people that helped shape the man I am today. There are no words that I could say that could describe how amazing the Clements treated and cared about me.
“I was also lucky enough to live with Corey Dambrauskas and Andrew Thompson at the Clements’ household, and I am still very close to them to this day. To sum it up, I never stopped enjoying my time in Humboldt because Humboldt has and always will be an essential part of my life.”
Calgary’s McCann played 28 games for the Broncos as an 18-year-old. As well, he spent time in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League in Kindersley while also playing Junior A in Alberta and B.C. He played his third season for the Adrian College NCAA Division III team last winter.
“Andrew is a huge piece to our dressing room,” Adrian College head coach Adam Krug said. “He's a glue guy, for sure. Andrew comes to the rink, prepared to get better every day - which he has. As a defenceman he plays a relatively physical game and makes simple plays in transition which fits into our style real nicely.”
McCann recorded an assist in 19 games last season. He earned the team’s Coach’s Award, which goes to a student-athlete who best encompasses the Bulldogs hockey spirit.
“Andrew cares so much about being an Adrian College Bulldog,” Krug said. “He wants to win, he wants to succeed, he wants to see his teammates do well. He's been a great teammate within our program for the last three seasons.”
Like McCann, Raposo was also in his third season at Adrian College. The Carstairs, Alta. product played 10 games for the Broncos in 2016-2017. He also spent time at the Junior A level in B.C., Alberta, and Ontario. Last season Raposo, a forward, suited up for two games with the ACHA Division I Bulldogs.
“Dante is a team-first guy that really loves playing hockey,” Adrian College ACHA DI head coach Gary Astalos said. “He has a very strong shot and high compete level. We are very happy to have him in our program.”
In his fourth season, Session was an important scorer and leader for the Adrian College ACHA Division II team. He was fourth on the squad with 13 points in 15 games. He had a goal and 12 assists.
“Justin brings a lot of strengths to the team. He is by far the fastest guy on the ice and uses his speed and skill to help set up a lot of scoring chances,” said Ty Prater, the Adrian College ACHA Division II head coach. “Justin is also one of our best leaders - all of the younger guys look up to him and ask him for pointers. Even when he's not leading vocally, he's doing everything right and leading by example. Justin is a huge asset to the team and definitely makes my job easier due to all of his help with the younger players.”
From Detroit, Session saw action in two games with the Broncos in 2014-15