Tuesday, 14 August 2018

NIHL Signing News


NIHL News


Billingham Stars have signed netminder Thomas Brown from Whitley Warriors as the shot stopper joins his father, Head Coach Tom Brown, on Teesside for the upcoming campaign. Signing for Whitley last season, eighteen-year-old Brown continued his development with the Braves and the Renegades but did not feature for the Warriors who already had four netminders at their disposal. Now switching to the Stars, he is now set to fulfil netminding duties alongside James Flavell and Mark Watson.






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Saturday, 11 August 2018

NIHL Signing News


NIHL News

Whitley Warriors have today announced the re-signing of young forwards Jamie Ord, Anthony Wetherell and Ross Douglass. Last season, seventeen-year-old Ord gained a great deal of ice time with the Warriors, grabbing a goal and an assist in twenty five league games, and he will therefore look to continue his development with the club this season. Meanwhile, featuring on five occasions for the Warriors in his most recent campaign, Wetherell primarily iced for Whitley Renegades in the Under 20s league, notching nine points in nine games for the outfit. A promising young forward, Wetherell will again set out to feature in Whitley’s league campaign this season. Last but not least, Douglass also returns to David Longstaff’s line-up having played in seventeen of Whitley’s league fixtures last season besides captaining the Renegades for whom he was able to snatch two assists in eight league games. Another important youngster, Douglass will aim for more ice time with the Warriors this coming season.




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Friday, 10 August 2018

NIHL Signing News


NIHL News

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson      
Billingham Stars have re-signed forward Jack Davies who will embark on his sixth season at the club when he heads out onto the ice next month. Starting out with Billingham’s junior setup, Davies then opted for a move to Hillheads where he iced with both the Tomahawks and the Braves between 2009 and 2012 before returning to The Forum. Contributing three goals and four assists in twenty one league games last season, Davies will look to better his points production to help his side achieve their true potential this coming season.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson     
Meanwhile, Solway Sharks have confirmed that netminder Calum Hepburn will return for a fourth consecutive season after fulfilling the role of first choice shot stopper in recent campaigns. Achieving a save percentage of 88.7% in thirty three league games last season, Hepburn has shown himself to be strong between the pipes, not least during Solway’s 2016-17 treble-winning campaign. As such, Hepburn will join fellow shot stopper Jordan McLaughlin in the Sharks’ line-up when Solway take to the ice next month.



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Thursday, 9 August 2018

NIHL Signing News


NIHL News

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Whitley Warriors have announced the re-signing of forward Shaun Kippin who returns for a fourth consecutive season at the club. After playing junior ice hockey at both Sunderland and Whitley, Kippin made his debut with the Warriors during their 2002-03 campaign whilst primarily playing for the Tomahawks and the Braves. Continuing to ice for the Warriors for a further three seasons, Kippin took time out of the sport before returning to Whitley’s line-up in the season that followed. Remaining with the Warriors until September 2012, Kippin then switched to NIHL 2 outfit Deeside Dragons where he racked up a total of ninety points in fifty one league games. Returning to Whitley in 2015, Kippin has since fulfilled the role of alternate captain at the club and, in his most recent campaign, tallied eighteen goals and twenty one assists in thirty three league games to finish as his team’s fourth highest points scorer. As an experienced and skilful leader, Kippin’s presence will be welcomed when he lines up with the Warriors again next month.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Similarly, Solway Sharks have re-signed a strong leader in Struan Tonnar who, making his debut with the Dumfries outfit in 2005, has been an important part of Solway’s line-up ever since. Fulfilling the role of alternate captain during the side’s 2014-15 campaign, Tonnar was then awarded the captaincy in the season which followed and notably led his side to silverware success in their 2016-17 treble-winning campaign. Accumulating twenty three points in thirty three league games last season, Tonnar helped his side achieve their fourth place finish and he will look to build on this with his team when they take to the ice next month.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Last but not least, Billingham Stars have re-signed defenceman Matthew Campbell who heads into his seventh consecutive season for the club. Having played for Whitley’s junior setup prior to joining the Stars’ Under 16s team in their 2011-12 campaign, Campbell made his senior debut with the side in the season that followed, achieving four points in five league games. Since then, Campbell has regularly featured on Billingham’s blue line, playing thirty two league games for the outfit last season in which he was able to chip in with two goals and four assists. Another important returnee, Campbell will be ready to take to the ice with the Stars when the season gets underway.


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Wednesday, 8 August 2018

NIHL Signing News


NIHL News

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Billingham Stars have announced the return of defenceman Darren Stattersfield to their line-up. After starting out with Northern Stars’ Under 16s team in 2010, Stattersfield attended the Okanagan Hockey Academy in the UK between 2012 and 2015. Subsequent to this experience, the defenceman travelled to Canada where he iced for the Coldwater Falcons before joining London Lakers in the GMHL during their 2016-17 campaign. In the same season, the blue liner featured for Norwood Nemesis and Essa Stallions in the CPJHL and then signed for Solway Sharks on his return to Britain. After tallying seven assists in fourteen games across all competitions for the Dumfries outfit, Stattersfield opted for a move to Billingham last summer, achieving ten points in sixteen league games whilst also featuring for the Stars’ Under 20s team. Returning to the Teesside club for a second consecutive season, Stattersfield will bolster Billingham’s growing defensive unit.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson      
Meanwhile, further to this morning’s announcement that forward Rick Bentham will play at the Dumfries Ice Bowl this coming season, Solway Sharks have tonight announced the re-signing of experienced defenceman Kyle Horne. Joining the Sharks last season, Horne contributed twenty three points in thirty two league games as well as proving highly effective on Solway’s blue line. Having first played in the BNL with Fife Flyers from 1999 to 2005, Horne then iced in the EPL with Slough Jets for two campaigns before playing ten seasons in the Elite League, first with Edinburgh Capitals and then the Flyers. With a wealth of experience to offer as a result, Horne is another excellent addition to the Sharks’ roster.   




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NIHL Signing News


NIHL News

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Billingham Stars have announced the return of backup netminder Mark Watson who is set for his eighth consecutive season at the Teesside club after achieving a save percentage of 88.7% in seventeen games last season. Having played ice hockey for both Newcastle Vipers’ and Whitley Warriors’ junior setups, Watson then went on to divide his 2010-11 campaign between Whitley Braves and the Northern Stars prior to the side’s merger with Billingham in the season that followed. Sharing netminding duties with fellow shot stopper James Flavell during the Stars’ league campaign and icing in the NIHL National Cup last season, Watson will continue to be an important part of Billingham’s roster when he takes his place between the pipes in his upcoming campaign.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Likewise, Solway Sharks have re-signed experienced defenceman and on-ice leader James Hutchinson who heads into his third consecutive season with the Dumfries outfit, having first iced for the side during their 2016-17 treble-winning campaign. Though playing just seventeen games for the Sharks last season through injury, alternate captain Hutchinson was still able to contribute five goals and seven assists to Solway’s league campaign. With a wealth of experience having played in both the Elite League and the EPL prior to signing for Solway in 2016, Hutchinson will again bring calm, composure and consistency to the Sharks’ blue line when he returns to the ice next month.


Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Further to re-signing Hutchinson, Solway have also confirmed the return of forward Rick Bentham who joins their roster from Blackburn Hawks. Having previously iced with the Sharks in their 2014-15 campaign, Bentham achieved forty nine points in twenty four league games to finish the season as the team’s top points scorer. The forward then signed for the Hawks in what was an extremely successful season for Blackburn in which they were crowned NIHL North league and playoff champions. Returning to the Dumfries outfit in 2016, Bentham played three league games and two cup games for the Sharks, notching a total of five goals and two assists in that time, but he then switched back to the Hawks where he was able to achieve forty seven points in twenty league fixtures. Finishing as Blackburn’s top points scorer for two consecutive seasons, Bentham will add even more firepower to the Sharks’ line-up which is certainly shaping up to be formidable.   


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Monday, 6 August 2018

NIHL Signing News


NIHL News

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Whitley Warriors have announced the re-signings of skilled forwards Ryan Sample and Callum Watson. Making his debut for the Warriors during their 2002-03 campaign whilst primarily playing for Whitley Braves, Sample quickly progressed to the senior side, bringing speed and skill to Whitley’s line-up. Never one to shy away from a fight, Sample racked up the penalty minutes as much as the goals over the course of seven full seasons with the Warriors. Taking a break from the sport from 2011 to 2013, Sample played four games during Whitley’s 2013-14 campaign but he did not ice with the side again until last season. Achieving seven points in fourteen league games, Sample returned to the ice in style with two goals and an assist against Telford Tigers in October. A diligent and dexterous forward, Sample is another welcome addition to David Longstaff’s line-up.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Likewise, long-serving Warrior Watson will also bring a great deal of skill to Whitley’s roster as he heads into his thirteenth consecutive season at Hillheads, having first iced for the side during their 2006-07 campaign. Since then, Watson has demonstrated his goal scoring prowess and shown himself to be a fantastic offensive threat on the ice, accumulating three hundred and nine points over the course of two hundred and sixty seven league games. Tallying five goals and six assists in his most recent campaign for the club after missing out on several games last season, Watson will no doubt build on this contribution next month to show what he is capable of when he takes to the ice with the Warriors once again. 


Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Meanwhile, Solway Sharks have secured the services of forward and top points scorer Iain Bowie who re-signs for a second consecutive campaign after achieving twenty six goals and thirty one assists in thirty four league games for the Dumfries outfit last season. Taking a season away from the sport during Solway’s 2016-17 campaign, Bowie returned to the side last September and was immediately a force to be reckoned with, scoring four goals and notching two assists against Blackburn Hawks in the NIHL National Cup in the Sharks’ opening game of the season. With a capacity for finding the back of the net and wreaking havoc against his opposition’s defence, Bowie will look to at least repeat, if not better, last season’s points production when he laces up his skates again in September.

Photo Credit: IceHockeyMedia - Colin Lawson
Last but not least, Billingham Stars have re-signed defenceman Richie Thornton who heads into his eighth consecutive season for the Teesside outfit. Playing twenty one league games for the Stars last season, Thornton chipped in with a goal and five assists to help his team’s offensive efforts whilst remaining a reliable presence on Billingham’s blue line. With an ice hockey career spanning more than twenty seasons, Thornton is one of the Stars’ most experienced players, having first featured in an Eagles’ line-up which also included newly appointed Head Coach Tom Brown. Bringing knowledge and leadership to Billingham’s defence, Thornton is another valuable member of the Stars’ growing roster and will no doubt make a positive impact for his team when the season gets underway. 


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