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Davidson Commits To Nichols College

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – Three-year Brahma Hogan Davidson announced his commitment to Nichols College on Tuesday, becoming the 19th player from this season’s roster to advance to a higher level of hockey.

The organization’s all-time leader in games played came to North Richland Hills at the trade deadline of the 2013-14 North American Hockey League season from the Wichita Falls Wildcats.  The Duluth, MN native would go on to play 142 total games in a Brahmas sweater, and accumulate 44 points and 169 penalty minutes along the way.

“A huge weight has been lifted off of my shoulders. I feel excited for my next four years of hockey,” the newest commit said.  “I couldn’t be more thrilled to play for Nichols as they are a great hockey program and are very academically sound. Coach Burgess is a smart hockey coach and an even better individual. I can’t wait to play for him.”

Nichols College is a private school located in Dudley, Massachusetts.  Their hockey program competes in Division III of the NCAA and has a nickname of the Bison.

“My time in Brahmaland shaped me into the player I am today. I can’t thank Coach Wildfong, Coach Potter, the organization, and the fans enough for everything they did for me. It was three great years,” Davidson continued.

Always willing to put his body on the line for his teammates, Davidson’s true mark in the lineup came on the penalty kill.  The Brahmas finished second in the league during both of Hogan’s full seasons on the team, killing off 88.01% of infractions in 2014-15 and 87.55% in 15-16.

The former #37 won’t be escaping the Brahmas organization for long though, as the Nichols schedule includes familiar faces such as Nick Ford (Elmira), Tomas Brejcha (Curry), and Sam Gagnon (Westfield State), all during the 2016-17 season.

“I’m excited to be out on the east coast and can’t wait to play some more puck,” the newest member of the Bison wrapped up with.

For more information on Brahmas commitments, stay tuned to the Brahmas on Facebook (Lone Star Brahmas) and Twitter (@LoneStarBrahmas).  To inquire about season tickets, give us a call at 817-336-4ICE.

Potter Headed To Youngstown

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – Brahmas Assistant Coach Jeff Potter will have a new job for the 2016-17 season, accepting a position with the Youngstown Phantoms of the United States Hockey League.

In three years as Dan Wildfong’s right-hand man, the Brahmas went from being a new North American Hockey League organization to an undeniable source of player advancement to the NCAA level.  During the franchise’s first North American Hockey League season in 2013-14, the team concluded with a record of 23-33-4, had mass amounts of roster turnover, and missed the playoffs.  However, thanks to Potter’s knack to find and recruit skilled players, the Brahmas turned it around quickly, making the playoffs the past two seasons, including a Robertson Cup Final Four appearance in 2014-15.

“Obviously I want to start by saying thank you to Frank, Sal, and Dan for giving me this opportunity a few years ago and allowing me to be a part of the Brahmas organization.  I’d like to think the team has made strides in the right direction, especially towards the ultimate goal of winning a championship,” Potter remarked.

Potter’s title with the Phantoms will be Assistant Coach, however he anticipates having a hand in player personnel as well.  “I’m very excited to have this new opportunity in Youngstown.  It’s a terrific organization and allows me to be closer to home as well.”

Brahmas Head Coach Dan Wildfong expressed his gratitude for all of Potter’s hard work by saying, “Jeff’s done an unbelievable job of finding talent for us the past few years and helping guys move on to the next level.  I’m sure he’s going to do an unreal job for Youngstown’s organization as well and even beyond that in the collegiate ranks down the line.”

The departure is expected to be the third and final coaching change the organization will announce this summer, following the transition of Al Rooney from NA3HL Texas Jr. Brahmas Head Coach to Lone Star Brahmas Assistant, and Michael Hill entering as the new Jr. Brahmas Head Coach.

“We’re very thankful for everything Jeff has done for our organization and wish him the best of luck in his new venture,” NYTEX Sports Co-Owner Frank Trazzera said of the move.

For more information on the 2016-17 season, stay close to the Brahmas on both Facebook (Lone Star Brahmas) and Twitter (@LoneStarBrahmas).  To inquire about season tickets, call 817-336-4ICE.

What Does History Say For Clarke?

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – History was made this past Saturday when Brahmas defensemen Cam Clarke was selected in the fifth round of the 2016 NHL Draft.

 

Drafted 136th overall by the Boston Bruins, the Massachusetts organization now holds the rights to the defensemen for the next four seasons while the prospect plays his collegiate hockey at Ferris State.   But what does the past say about those selected with the 136th pick?

 

Since the NHL Draft expanded to 136 picks (and beyond) in 1972, there have been 11 players selected at #136 to make it to the NHL.

 

1981: Bruce Holloway

1983: Sean Toomey

1989: Scott Daniels

1990: Eric Lacroix

1991: Andreas Johansson

1992: Grigorijis Pantelejevs

1993: Rick Mrozik

1996: Andreas Dackell

1997: Mike York

2001: Billy Thompson

2004: Nikita Nikitin

 

Of the 11, Andreas Dackell went on to have the most storied NHL career, totaling 613 games and 250 points with stints on the Montreal Canadiens and Ottawa Senators.

 

More specifically, on defense, since the league expanded to 30 teams in 2000, there have been 33 defensemen drafted in the 5th round to make it to the NHL.  The players have been:

 

2000: Petteri Nummelin, Mike Stuart, David Koci, Greg Zanon

2001: Cole Jarrett, Jussi Timonen, Kevin Bieksa

2002: James Wisniewski

2003: Tyson Strachan, Lasse Kukkonen

2004: Nikita Nikitin, Bryan Young, Janne Niskala

2005: Brian Salcido, Derek Joslin, Mark Fayne

2006: Shane Sims, Andrew Bodnarchuk, Alex Biega, Olivier Magnan

2007: Jake Muzzin

2008: Greg Pateryn, Brent Regner, Mark Borowiecki, Phillip Larsen

2009: Anton Klementyev

2010: John Klingberg, Kevin Gravel

2011: Fredrik Claesson, Darren Dietz, Nikita Nesterov, Frank Corrado

2012: Connor Carrick

 

Normally revered as a round where players are selected and need a few additional years to blossom their game, Clarke fits the description to a tee.

 

“We know he’s going to take some time to develop but we’re good with that,” Bruins Director of Scouting Keith Gretzky told Ferris State Hockey after the draft.   “We knew there were other teams right there [contemplating selecting Clarke] and our guys really like him.”

 

Other notable all-time fifth round draft selections include Olympic Gold Medalist Jamie Benn of the Dallas Stars, and Stanley Cup Champion Andrew Shaw of the Montreal Canadiens.

 

For more information on Clarke, stay tuned to “Lone Star Brahmas” on Facebook and “@LoneStarBrahmas” on Twitter.  To inquire about season tickets, call 817-336-4ICE.

Clarke Selected By Boston In NHL Draft

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – Cam Clarke became the second player in Brahmas history selected in the National Hockey League Draft on Saturday, selected 136th overall by the Boston Bruins.

 

The defensemen totaled 50 points in 59 regular season games; leading all North American Hockey League defensemen in both assists and points.  On top of his statistical achievements, Clarke was also named the NAHL Defensemen of the Year.

 

“My family and I were just sitting and watching and I saw it come up on the screen, and it was unreal.  It was like you just scored an overtime winner.  Everyone started jumping around and it was just an awesome moment,” Clarke said.

 

Boston's newest product was one of just six players selected by the Bruins in the draft and joins Boston University's Charlie McAvoy and Univeristy of Minneosta's Ryan Lindgren as the only defensemen taken by the organization.

 

“We’re really happy for him and his family.  It’s just a feather in the cap and shows what guys can do when they get an opportunity,” Brahmas Head Coach Dan Wildfong said.  “Cam played really well for us here and took his game to another level, so we are thrilled about today’s selection.”

 

#15 will be playing his college hockey for Ferris State University in the fall, members of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).  Cam is the first player with ties to the WCHA ties to be selected in the National Hockey League Draft.

 

Assistant Coach Jeff Potter said of the situation, “We’re thrilled to see Cam taken today by the Bruins.  He’s a kid who a couple of years ago, or maybe even a year ago, no one thought this would have happened to, so it’s obviously a fantastic story for him, our organization, and the North American Hockey League.”

 

Clarke joins 2014-15 Brahmas goaltender Jake Kupsky, who was selected 193rd overall by the San Jose Sharks in the 2015 NHL Draft.

 

"I wouldn't be here without my time in Brahmaland.  I kind of came out of nowhere and the Brahmas gave me a platform to showcase what I've got.  Like I've said over and over again, the coaching staff is unbelievable.  Coach Potter and Coach Wildfong really do a great job and I was lucky enough to play with a group of great guys, and I wouldn't be here without them," Clarke  concluded with.

 

For more information on Clarke’s selection in the 2016 NHL Draft, stay tuned to “Lone Star Brahmas” on Facebook and “@LoneStarBrahmas” on Twitter.  To inquire about season tickets for 2016-17, call 817-336-4ICE.

 

WATCH HIGHLIGHT'S FROM CAM'S 2015-16 SEASON HERE

Rooney Promoted To Lone Star

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – NYTEX Sports Co-Owner Frank Trazzera announced Wednesday that Texas Jr. Brahmas Head Coach Al Rooney has been promoted to full-time Assistant Coach of the North American Hockey League’s Lone Star Brahmas.

Rooney, who led the NA3HL affiliate to a 61-24-9 record and two playoff appearances in two seasons, additionally took the team to its first Silver Cup appearance this past spring.

“I’m very excited about this new position.  It's been nice to have served as goalie coach with the 'big' club these past two seasons, but this bigger role is something I've been anxious to get the opportunity to do,” Rooney expressed.  “Working alongside Dan will be an absolute pleasure and I know I have big shoes to fill, but I'm confident that we will succeed and have another outstanding team and season in Brahmaland.”

Head Coach Dan Wildfong is embracing the new face beside him on the bench, despite a highly successful 102-57-21 record with Jeff Potter as his assistant the past three years.

“Al’s done a great job with the NA3 program, and there’s so many reasons as to why I’m excited to be working with him.  He’s really knowledgeable with the game of hockey and I think he’s going to be great at the North American Hockey League level and even beyond that,” Wildfong said of the promotion.

The Texas Jr. Brahmas had four players called up to the NAHL last season, as a part of the NA3HL’s record advancement year.  On top of those four, Lone Star tendered Jr. Brahmas captain Brock Brown for the 2016-17 season.

“I'm looking forward to coaching in a tougher league with better players.  There are no 'nights off' in the NAHL schedule so I'm excited about this new challenge and rising to the occasion alongside Coach Wildfong to keep the Brahmas amongst the elite in the league,” Rooney continued on his new role.  “Recruiting and placements are in a whole different level as well, it's a much bigger and complicated picture but in a good way.  I feel confident and excited about everything, and I can't wait for the season to start.”

Rooney will still remain active among the NA3 program, however in a more of an assistant role.  He will assume his North American Hockey League coaching duties immediately, including with this weekend’s Open Camp.  For more information on the 16-17 season and the further coaching changes, be sure to stay tuned to the “Lone Star Brahmas” on Facebook and “@LoneStarBrahmas” on Twitter.

Lundgren Signs Pro In Sweden

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – Johan Lundgren announced he has signed a professional contract in his native Sweden, becoming the 18th player to dawn a Brahmas sweater this season to advance to the next level.

The 5’11” – 185 lbs. winger will be playing for Helsingborgs HC in the fall, a Tier III program that competes in “Hockeyettan” or Division I.

“I decided that it was time for me to start my professional career and try my abilities on a new, different and more challenging level,” Lundgren said.  “I have been playing junior hockey for a long time and this is the natural step to take.  When I was given the opportunity to sign for my hometown team I didn't have to think twice about it. It's a great place for developing and becoming a better player.”

Lundgren will be in the Helsingborgs lineup with another familiar face to Brahmaland, Anton Santesson.  A member of the 2014-15 Brahmas, Santesson recorded 16 points in 32 games for the Swedish club last year and even saw a brief advancement to Tier II IK Oskarshamn.

“The team and organization is in an interesting part of its development.   They have high, realistic ambitions and a good plan for how to proceed forward,” the former #19 said of his new club.  “This along with the chance to compete against older, experienced players and the possibility of developing as a player and moving on to the next level makes me happy to be a part of this group.”

Acquired on December 22nd from the Amarillo Bulls, the winger produced 19 points in 29 games for the Brahmas.  Commonly found across the ice from either fellow-Swede Martin Mellberg or top-scorer Alex Berardinelli, Johan’s skill set was taken to a new level.

“My time in Lone Star and the North American Hockey League has helped me a lot.  I have improved parts of my game that needed to be improved, especially the game away from the puck, taking responsibility in the defensive part of the game, and playing in a more structured way.  Having two experienced coaches in Lone Star was unbelievable.  Dan knows what it takes to play at the professional level and what parts of your game that you need to pay extra attention to and improve.  I will take with me a great, developing experience with a lot of good teaching points and great memories,” Lundgren concluded with.

For more information on Brahmas advancements, stay tuned to “Lone Star Brahmas” on Facebook, and “@LoneStarBrahmas” on Twitter.  For information on season tickets, call 817-336-4ICE.

Redmon Commits to Milwaukee School of Engineering

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – Nicholas Redmon announced his commitment to the Milwaukee School of Engineering on Thursday, becoming the 16th player to wear a Brahmas sweater this season to advance to the collegiate level.

“Milwaukee School of Engineering has a great program and after meeting Coach Ostapina and touring campus I think MSOE will be a great fit for me both academically and athletically,” Redmon said. “Coach Ostapina is a great coach with a lot of experience and I really look forward to playing for him. MSOE has a great engineering program and I plan on studying mechanical engineering.”

Redmon played four games with the Brahmas this past season after being called up from the Nashville Jr. Predators of the NA3HL.

MSOE, a private Wisconsin school, competes in Division III of the NCAA, and more specifically the Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association.  Competing against schools like Adrian College, Redmon will face former Brahma Bud Madej during divisional play in the fall.

Upon his return to the Jr. Predators, Redmon finished in the Top 10 in goals by defensemen in the NA3HL.  Additionally, the 6’1” – 185 lbs. blue liner participated in the NA3HL Top Prospects Tournament in February.

For news on more Brahmas commitments, stay tuned to “Lone Star Brahmas” on Facebook and “@LoneStarBrahmas” on Twitter.

Brahmas Add Ten Via Draft

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – The 2016 North American Hockey League Draft was conducted on Tuesday and the Brahmas selected the rights of 10 players.

In order, by selection, the players are as follows:

Round One: Levi Wunder (F)

Round Three: Austin O’Rourke (F)

Round Four: Alec Calvaruso (G)

Round Six: Joseph Berg (F)

Round Seven: Zachary Mirageas (D)

Round Eight: Nick Balestra (F)

Round Nine: Kimball Johnson (D)

Round Ten: Morten Jensen (D)

Round Eleven: Austin Pooley (F)

Round Twelve: Tyler Harmon (G)

The team “passed” after Round 12 because all 31 spots of the team’s protected list spots have now been accounted for.  A team’s protected list is made up of players from the 2015-16 roster that are eligible (and selected) to return, tenders, and draft picks.

“I’m very pleased with the way things went,” Assistant Coach Jeff Potter said following the conclusion of the draft.  “Normally there’s at least one hiccup along the way but I believe things went well today.”

Off the ten draft picks, three of them are already committed to play Division I college hockey.  First round pick Levi Wunder will be continuing his post-junior career at the University of Alabama-Huntsville, defenseman Zachary Mirageas will play for Air Force, and late-round selection Austin Pooley will be an Ohio State Buckeye.

Joseph Berg and Kimball Johnson are two names that Brahmas fans are likely to remember, as both saw time with the team in the spring.  Amidst a slew of injuries and suspensions to the Brahmas roster, the Dallas Stars Elite U16 teammates stepped up and performed despite their young age.

Beyond the NCAA commits and two familiar faces, the team additionally bolstered the depth in the crease by selecting Alec Calvaruso and Tyler Harmon.  Calvaruso is coming off of stellar year at Detroit Catholic Central, which featured a sub-2.00 goals against average and a .919 save percentage.  Four-year New Jersey Hitmen product Tyler Harmon never had a goals against average above 2.18 and also never had a save percentage below .900.  During the 2015-16 season he had a 1.32 GAA and had an insane .941 SV%.

Those seeking size in replacement of Tomas Brejcha can look no further than Austin O’Rourke.  The 6’4” – 215 lbs. forward is coming from Tier II junior hockey in Canada, where he concluded the season with nine points in 12 playoff games for Lloydminster of the Alberta Junior Hockey League.

On the other end of the size spectrum, 5’6” – 145 lbs. St. Louis AAA Blues feature Nick Balestra is expected to bring the same sort of speed that many enjoyed this past season from Alex Berardinelli.  The past two seasons the Ballwin, Missouri native scored over a point per game in the T1EHL U16 & 18.

Perhaps the most interesting selection of the draft though came in the 10th round when the staff picked Morten Jensen.  The 1997-born defenseman has no North American hockey experience but has been a reliable structure in Sweden for the Rogle program since 2013.  Fans may recognize the name of the organization from now former Brahma Johan Lundgren.  On top of playing for the highly-revered Swedish team, Jensen has also represented Denmark internationally since 2012.

The NA3HL affiliate Texas Jr. Brahmas will begin filling out their roster next Tuesday when the NA3HL Draft takes place.  For all of that information, stay tuned to “Texas Brahmas NA3HL” on Facebook and “@TXBrahmas” on Twitter.  As for the big Brahmas, Open Camp will take place at NYTEX on June 24-26.  Following that, Main Camp will be in Detroit at the Artic Edge Ice Arena at the end of July.  Be sure to stay tuned to all Brahmas social media for more coverage on the recent draft picks!

Meet The Future: Brahmas Tender Five

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – This Tuesday marks the North American Hockey League Draft, one of several ways the Brahmas are able to fill their roster for the 2016-17 season.  One of the other procedures teams can use to acquire players is by tendering them.

Per the North American Hockey League definition, “A tender is a contract, of sorts, a player signs announcing his intentions to play for that particular NAHL team and that NAHL team only. Once a player signs a tender with an NAHL team, his playing rights belong to that team within the NAHL and he may not be recruited by any other NAHL team.”

Monday the Brahmas officially announced the tendering of five players: Aidan Teilborg, Alex Stoley, Austin Kamer, Drake Glover, and Jack Zielinski.

Teilborg, 20, is a forward who spent the last two seasons with the Weyburn Red Wings of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League.  In 112 total games the 6’0” – 195 lbs. winger posted 93 points.  A draft pick of the Fairbanks Ice Dogs in 2015, Teilborg is expected to begin and conclude his NAHL career in the Lone Star state.

Stoley, 20, brings two years of junior hockey experience to the Brahmas.  The sturdy defensemen played 109 total games with the Prince George Spruce Kings of the British Columbia Hockey League and is eager to get started in North Richland Hills.

I'm excited to be part of the Brahmas.  It's a top end junior team that develops their players into college players.  The organization is impressive from top to bottom and I can't wait to be part of it.”

Kamer, 20, additionally spent his past two seasons in the BCHL, as a member of the Powell River Kings.   Coming off of a season in which he improved his point total by over 20, the right-handed forward is aiming to finish his junior hockey career with his best production yet.

“I’m really excited about playing hockey for a team that has a history of winning and moving players on to the next level.  It’s a great spot to play and I’ve heard nothing but positive things about the organization.”

Glover, 20, was teammates with Teilborg last season in Weyburn of the SJHL.  Commonly found on the ice with one another, the Anchorage born forward put up 47 points in 48 games during the regular season.

“I’m very excited for the opportunity this year.  This team has had a lot of success in past years and I've heard nothing but great things about the program.”

Lastly, 20-year-old Zielinski tenders after spending last season with the Kingston Voyageurs of the Ontario Junior Hockey League.  At 6’2” – 190 lbs. the sizeable defensemen tacked on 34 points in 43 games and continued the impressive clip through a playoff run with his team.

“I'm very excited for the opportunity to play for the Brahmas next season.  I think that this will be the perfect place not only for me to advance my hockey career but also have an opportunity to win a championship.”

Find out who will be joining these five tenders on the potential 2016-17 roster tomorrow at 1 P.M. when the 2016 NAHL Draft kicks off.  The Brahmas Facebook (Lone Star Brahmas) and Twitter (@LoneStarBrahmas) feeds will have up-to-the-second coverage, and a recap of the event will be posted on the team’s website following.

Madej Commits To Adrian College

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TX – Two-year Brahma Bud Madej announced his commitment to Adrian College on Wednesday night, becoming the 15th member of the team this season to take his talents to the collegiate level.

In 67 career games with the Brahmas, Madej totaled 15 goals and 11 assists.  Additionally, he finished second in power play goals by a defenseman and tied for third in goals at the position over the course of the 2015-16 North American Hockey League regular season.

“It's quite a relief to finally take that weight off my shoulders.  Although it took me a little while to make my final decision I wanted to make sure I was going to play for a school where not only would I succeed as a hockey player but also as person and a scholar,” Madej said of his commitment.

“This is so great for Bud and we’re really happy that he’s going to be continuing his hockey career,” Head Coach Dan Wildfong remarked.  “Bud’s been a big part of Brahmaland these past few years and for him to come back to us the way he did and still be able to excel really says a lot about the type of person he is.”

Known for his hammering shot from the blue line, the former #18 also displays the willingness to stick up for his teammates at all times.  With 150 penalty minutes this year, Madej participated in several fights that will resonate with the Brahmaland fans for years to come.

“Having the opportunity to play for Dan and Jeff was truly a blessing.  I can't name any other place in the North American Hockey League I would have rather been. Each year I was lucky enough to meet new fans and get to know the staff around the rink.  I was also lucky enough to play with some very great teammates, whom are now some of my best friends,” the newest Bulldog carried on.

Adrian College competes in Division III of the NCAA and the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association (NCHA).  This past year they finished 24-4-1 overall, finishing just points ahead of St. Norbert, the home of former Brahmas, Roman Uchyn, T.J. Black, and Storm Wahlrab.

When asked what he was looking forward to most about his next journey, Madej stated, “I'm excited that I've finally been given the opportunity to play hockey at the collegiate level and also work towards my degree at the same time.  Adrian is a great place for me because it is close enough to home where my friends and family will be able to take ride out to watch me play, which is very important to me because I've always enjoyed having their support while playing the game I love.”

“I think it’s a fantastic fit for both sides here.  [Adrian] is getting a terrific player that is going to help they’re hockey program and Bud now has a chance to complete his education the right way,” Wildfong continued.

Located in Adrian, Michigan (roughly 45 minutes from Toledo), the private institution offers bachelor’s degrees in 40 academic majors and programs.  Their student body is approximately 2,000.

“After my visit to I am very excited for this upcoming school year.  Nonetheless my experience in Brahmaland was all I could have asked for, and for me it was very hard to let go of and realize that my junior career as a brahma is now a part of the past,” the latest Brahma commit wrapped up with.