AMARILLO, TX – Five Amarillo Bulls Alumni and one former Amarillo professional player are among 11 teams battling for the NCAA Division III National Championship that will officially get underway this weekend.
The defending National Champion Trinity College Bantams will host UMASS-Boston in a first round game on Saturday with the winner to face Hobart next week. Ryan Cole, a junior at Trinity, has netted 10 goals and added 12 assist for 22 points in 27 games. TJ Sherman, who is also a junior, has tallied three goals and 12 assists for 15 points in 27 games. Defenseman Sam Johnson has posted a goal and three assists for four points in 24 games.
St. Norbert and Wisconsin Stevens Point both received first-round byes and won’t play until March 19. Riley Christensen, a sophomore at St. Norbert, had an impressive debut with 11 goals and 11 assists for 22 points, while Nick LeSage has four goals in 11 games.
Wisconsin Stevens-Point is coached by former Amarillo Rattlers power forward Chris Brooks who has a record of 95-40-10 with a .690 winning percentage in five seasons at the school. Stevens-Point advanced to the NCAA tournament by defeating Kyle Gattelaro and Wisconsin River-Falls in the WIAC Championship game in overtime. Brooks picked up 215 points in two career seasons with the Amarillo Rattlers in the former Western Professional Hockey League. The Stratford, Ontario Canada native then moved on to the NCAA coaching ranks as both an Assistant and Associate Coach with Western Michigan. He tried his hand in the professional ranks with the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees in the former Central Hockey League. Brooks led the Killer Bees to three playoff appearances before moving back to the collegiate ranks and the job at Wisconsin Stevens-Point.
The current Amarillo Bulls return to home ice on Friday and Saturday at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center hosting the rival Topeka Road Runners at 7 pm. Friday is presented by Community Options and 806 Sports, with the return of the Family Four Pack (4 tickets, 4 hotdogs, and 4 sodas for $44) and the Bring-A-Bud Pack (two tickets, two sodas, and two hotdogs for $22).
Khiva Shriners are the presenting sponsors for Saturday night and the Bulls are wearing specialty jerseys in support of the organization. A post game jersey auction takes place immediately after the game in The Corral. There is a Spring Break Special Ticket Special of $10 Red and Silver Sections.
Tickets are available at the Bulls Office located at 301 South Polk, Civic Center Box Office and all Panhandle Ticket locations including United Supermarkets. For further information on Group Rates, or 2016-17 Season Tickets, please call the Bulls Office at 806-242-1122.