Max Veronneau spent the last two seasons playing in the CCHL with fellow freshman Ryan Kuffner. During the 2013-14 season, Veronneau finished fifth in CCHL scoring, netting 80 points (41g, 39a) over 61 games. The forward was invited to the Central Canada Cup All-Star Challenge but missed the games due to an injury, something that also cost him much of the season. When the forward did play, he recorded 40 points (17g, 23a) in 33 games. In total. Veronneau had 123 points (59g, 64a) in 98 games.
Eye On The Tigers caught up with Veronneau to see what the incoming freshman had to say:
Why did you choose Princeton University?
I chose Princeton University because it is an amazing opportunity to play Division 1 hockey while studying at one of the most renowned schools in the world. After touring the campus and meeting the new coaching staff, I knew that this is a unique opportunity and the right choice for me.
What are you most looking forward to?
I am looking forward to experiencing what Princeton University has to offer. From the diversity of my fellow classmates to being a Princeton Tiger, I am truly excited about the next four years.
When did you get into hockey? What’s your earliest memory?
I started skating when I was three and began playing hockey one year later. My earliest memory is playing at the Canadian Tire Center (where the Ottawa Senators play) for a special community event that was held for four and five-year-olds. It was a lot of fun playing in such a big arena.
What NHL team did you grow up rooting for and why?
Having been born and raised in Ottawa, the Senators are my favorite team. The Sens have been a very entertaining team to watch over the years, and the community rallies around its players, from the best defender in the NHL – Erik Karlsson – to last year’s goalie phenom Andrew “the Hamburglar” Hammond.
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced in hockey?
Growing up, I was always one of the youngest and smallest players on my team. When I was younger, I was cut a few times. The disappointment acted as an incentive for me to push harder and keep developing my skills. Everything finally came together when I was 17. Perseverance pays off in the end.
What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen when playing hockey?
The strangest thing I’ve seen while playing hockey occurred at the Ontario Major Peewee Provincial Championships in Thunder Bay, Ont. Our team had to win in order to qualify for the playoffs. I had a great game, putting the puck in the net 4 times. Unfortunately, the referees inexplicably disallowed three of my goals and we ended up losing 6-4. It was a long trip home.
Who’s the most influential person in your hockey career?
My parents are the most influential people in my life and hockey career. They have always supported me through thick and thin and have sacrificed a lot of their time to allow me to pursue my hockey dream. They believed in me and let me pursue hockey even when it was difficult and challenging. I would not be at Princeton today if it wasn’t for them.
What’s the most exciting experience you’ve ever had?
The most exciting experience I have had is – of course – a hockey experience. In Major Peewee, we were in the League Championship final series against the heavily favored Ottawa Valley Titans. The Titans had dominated the season. Our team managed to push the series to the final, seventh game. The arena was packed, it felt like the entire city of Ottawa was there. The game was tied after regulation time expired. The first 2 overtime periods decided nothing. After many long hours, the game eventually ended in the third overtime period, when, after killing a penalty, our team scored the winning goal on a breakaway. I remember it vividly – it was the most exciting game I have ever played.
What do you plan on majoring in/what are your academic interests?
I plan on majoring in either Mechanical Engineering or Operations Research and Financial Engineering. They both intrigue me and I am looking forward to discovering more about these and the rest of the engineering majors.
What do you hope your legacy at Princeton University will be?
I would like to be remembered as a person who exemplifies the characteristics of a Princeton Tiger, both on and off the ice. Being viewed by my peers as someone who is determined, dedicated, and hardworking and a team player, especially when times get tough. Finally, I also hope to be remembered as one of the players who helped bring the National Championship to Hobey Baker Arena.