HOUGHTON - Like brother, like sister, like cousin, like uncle.
Devin Kero is going to be a Husky.
The 2012 Hancock High graduate publicly announced last weekend he will be joining older brother Tanner as a member of the Michigan Tech hockey team in the near future.
Hancock native Devin Kero, pictured here in a Joe Bukovich Classic game against Jeffers in December 2009, publicly announced his commitment to Michigan Tech's hockey program over the weekend. (DMG file photo)
With superb numbers in the British Colombia Hockey League for the Merritt Centennials (2.39 goals against, .920 save percentage in 34 games), Devin received interest from a number of schools - including but not limited to Air Force, Lake Superior State, Brown and Quinnipiac - but couldn't pass up the chance to join Tanner, as well as cousin Blake Hietala, at Tech.
"It has always been my dream to play at Michigan Tech," Devin Kero said, joining older sister Jordanna (volleyball) and uncle Ryan Markham (hockey, 2001-05). "I watched them since I was little, been going to games since I was a kid. I love Michigan Tech."
Until Kero signs a National Letter of Intent, coaches and athletes affiliated with Michigan Tech (including Tanner) are not allowed to comment on potential recruits.
Kero will be able to sign an NLI in April.
But Devin said he sought advice from Tanner and Hietala, and all the responses kept coming back positive.
"It really helped to get (Tanner's) perspective on playing in front of family and friends every night," Kero said. "We just talked about what it's like under the coaching staff, how the players get along and how the program really ran.
"I just really weighed all the pros and cons. A chance to come back home, I really couldn't turn it down."
Devin said he has been thinking about sporting the Husky sweater since he started skating at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena for high school games.
With two years of juniors under his belt (Kero played with the Coulee Region [Wis.] Chill in the North American Hockey League last season) each opportunity was devoted to making it back home for four years of Husky hockey.
"The light at the end of the tunnel was always to get to there," Kero said. "In high school, then in juniors the past year. My goal has always been to get back to Tech."
Kero said he plans on enrolling in the 2014 fall semester - "That's not 100 percent yet, but that's the plan," he said - and will get to play one year with Tanner on the roster as well.
Devin acknowledged that the battle for playing time will be tough with three goaltenders (two sophomores and a freshman) currently on the Tech roster, but that challenge will be present at any school.
"Obviously I can get quicker and stronger still," Kero said. "But the big thing is really playing consistently, giving your team a chance to win every night. juniors has really helped with that, playing so many games each season, you can focus on your consistency."
Until he comes back to the Copper Country, Devin said he plans on making the most out of his time in Merritt (where there is currently no snow on the ground).
But he is beyond excited knowing a Husky sweater is waiting for him.
"Since high school, you picture yourself in that Husky uniform performing in front of big crowd at a college arena," Kero said. "I can't wait."