It’s on to Paris to play professional hockey for Michael Steiner ’04, who played defenseman for the Academy’s Prep Hockey team. Steiner signed a one-year contract to play for Les Bisons de Neuilly-sur-Marne of Ligue Magnus, France’s national hockey league. He began training last summer.
Steiner, who recently graduated from Hobart & William Smith Colleges in Geneva, New York, played college hockey all four seasons. According to the school’s Web site, Steiner helped his team “earn three NCAA Tournament bids, including two trips to the national semifinals, and an overall record of 72-31-9.” Hobart’s defense ranked 11th nationally, and Steiner was the team’s second-highest scoring defenseman. In January 2009, he competed against several French teams, including squads from Ligue Magnus, and was spotted by a scout. “In the back of my mind, I knew I could play in Europe because it better suits my playing style,” he says.
“Mike is an extraordinary ice skater, very fast, and has tremendous skills,” says John Malloy, Gilmour hockey director. “He will do very well over there.” Malloy coached Steiner when he played at Gilmour and noted that he is the first Gilmour graduate to sign a contract to play professional hockey. “With quality players like Mike, we assist them in developing their skills, but they must be credited for their achievements.” The 5-foot-8, 160-pound defenseman started playing hockey when he was five years old after learning to skate at Thornton Park. “I really learned to play defense and to hone my skills when I was at Gilmour,” Steiner says. “I would never have reached this level if I had not played there.” He recalls his senior year playing on Gilmour’s Prep team, which won all five tournaments it competed in that year. He also played baseball at Gilmour. As a youth, Steiner played for the Junior Barons, a traveling hockey program in Cleveland. Following his graduation from Gilmour, Steiner played Junior A Hockey in Massachusetts for the Bridgewater Bandits.
The ace of skates plans to put his biology degree from Hobart to good use when he returns and apply to medical or dental school.