Big defenseman Oleksiak leaves Northeastern for OHL

Northeastern defenseman Jamie Oleksiak has left the school and signed an Ontario Hockey League contract with the Saginaw Spirit, the Spirit announced Monday.

The 6-foot-7, 245-pound Oleksiak, selected in the first round by the Dallas Stars in the 2011 NHL draft last month, finished his freshman year at Northeastern this past spring.

“We have been after him for a couple of years, similar to how we were after Brandon Saad leading up to last season,” Saginaw coach-GM Todd Watson said in a statement. “This is an important signing that helps to strengthen our defense and we look forward to him coming into camp, adjusting to the caliber of OHL hockey and contributing in the 2011-2012 season.”

Saginaw had originally drafted Oleksiak, a dual citizen who has opted to try out for the Canadian World Junior Championship team, in the seventh round of the 2008 OHL draft.

Oleksiak tallied four goals and 13 points in 38 games last season with Northeastern.