AMARILLO, TX – The Amarillo Bulls hit the state of California to secure its third tender with the addition of forward Elijiah Barriga of the Anaheim Jr. Ducks. Barriga is off to a terrific start with the Ducks Under 18 program not only leading his team, but the entire NAPHL with eight goals and 19 assists for 27 points.
“I’m excited to be part of the organization,” said Barriga. “One of the things that attracted me to the Bulls was their ability to move players on to the next level. I practiced with them this past summer so I am quite familiar with them. Their coaching staff is excellent at developing their players.”
Barriga was tendered by the Bulls last season and participated at their main camp. Head Coach Dennis Williams said he wasn’t sure if the speedy forward was ready to make the jump to the junior level.
“When we spoke to Elijiah at the end of camp, we told to go back to Anaheim and work hard to get stronger,” Williams said. “He’s proven that with the season that he is having. We are extremely excited about his decision to come back to Amarillo. His goal is to play Division I hockey and we are going to work hard to make sure he has that opportunity.
“He’s a terrific offensive player who is very aggressive. We expect him to come in next year and lead our group especially with the number of players that we will lose.”
The State of California has become a good spot for the Bulls to recruit the past couple of years with the success of Collin Delia, who recently committed to Merrimack College and his having an outstanding season in the league, and the addition of defenseman Dean Rhymer.
“Dean has been a big part of the team since he got back from injury,” Williams said.
“We have just added Elijiah so I don’t know if we are done there yet. It’s a state we want to get better at recruiting so hopefully there are a lot of great hockey players out there.”
Barriga said he is proud to be another California player on the Bulls roster.
“California players have come a long way and improved a lot,” he said. “It’s definitely showing with the number of players moving up to the NAHL. Our coaches are excellent at getting us ready to move up to the next level.”
Not since the NAHL Showcase have the Amarillo Bulls played more than two games in a row. It will be the case this coming weekend when the Bulls have their first three games in three nights. The Bulls visit the Lone Star Brahmas on Friday and Saturday at 7:30 pm at NYTEX Center. Fans can tune into the game live on CBS Sports Radio 1440, www.amarillobulls.com and on PPV courtesy of Fast Hockey beginning with the Wayland Baptist University Warm Up Show at 7:15 pm.
The weekend concludes with the Fourth Annual Sonic Sunday at 6 pm as the Bulls host the Odessa Jackalopes at the Budweiser Bull Pen in the Amarillo Civic Center. All tickets to that game are free and will be available starting on Sunday at 4 pm at the Main Box Office located on Buchanan, and Gate 8 on the Southeast Corner of the Civic Center. For further information on the Amarillo Bulls including Ticket Packages and Corporate Marketing Partnerships, please call 806-242-1122 or visit 301 South Polk in the Amarillo Building.