Players, Volunteers Recognized At Awards Ceremony


AMARILLO, TX – The North American Hockey League’s overall title was not the only thing the Amarillo Bulls and their fans got to celebrate on Saturday night.

Several awards were handed out to Bulls players, volunteers and fans that were part of the team’s success this season.

 Joe Kozlak was presented with the Most Valuable Player Award by Head Coach Dennis Williams and Assistant Coach Rocky Russo. In 55 games for the Bulls, Kozlak has notched 25 goals and added 22 assists for 47 points and is a plus 24. Kozlak, who will head to West Point and Division I Army in the fall, added nine power play goals and two more shorthanded.

TJ Sarcona was named Best Defensive Forward. The Long Island NY native, who will attend Niagara University in September, has 22 goals and 35 assists for 57 points. Sarcona has fired 150 shots and had netted four power play goals, four more shorthanded and four game winning markers.

Brooks Behling was selected as the Top Forward, and also given the Humanitarian Award for his work off the ice and in the community. In 55 games for the Bulls, Behling, who will play at Providence, leads the team in goals with 36 and points with 73. He also is first on the team and in the NAHL in shorthanded goals with five, and has added another seven on the man advantage.

The Best Offensive Defenseman was John Rey who leads the North American Hockey League in points among defenseman. Rey has 50 points in 58 games, including 42 assists. He is also first in the league in overall plus-minus at plus 61.

Karl Beckman was chosen as the Best Defensive Defenseman. The Michigan native, who will attend Holy Cross in September, is second among defenseman in the NAHL with 45 points. He is also second in assists (35), power play goals (7), and shots (158).

The Most Improved Player Award was given to rookie Geoff Fortman, who is third among defenseman in the NAHL with a plus-minus of plus 41. Fortman has 12 points in 50 games.

The Coaches Awards were handed out to defenseman Brandon Lubin and forward Greg Gibson for the extra work they put in on and off the ice.

David Reid was presented with the Bulls Award for his assistance with the team, while Erin Zielinski was presented with Fan Of The Year. Budweiser earned Corporate Partner of the Year and the Volunteer Of The Year was given to off-ice official Pete Manghan. Tyler Sweeney won the Ultimate Sports Intern Competition.

A complete list of Award Winners is below:

MVP —Joe Kozlak

Best Defensive Forward —TJ Sarcona

Top Forward —Brooks Behling

Most Improved — Geoff Fortman

Best Offensive Defenseman —John Rey

Best Defensive Defenseman —Karl Beckman

Coaches Award —Brandon Lubin/Greg Gibson

Humanitarian Award —Brooks Behling

Bulls Award —David Reid

Fan of the Year —Erin Zielinski

Corporate Partner — Budweiser

Volunteer —Pete Manghan

Ultimate Sports Intern —Tyler Sweeney


The Amarillo Bulls close out their regular season schedule tomorrow (Thursday) and Saturday with games in New Mexico to face the Mustangs at the Santa Ana Star Center. The face off for both games is set for 7:30 pm mountain, 8:30 pm central. Fans can tune into the games live on ESPN1440 and beginning with pre-game coverage presented by Wayland Baptist University at 8:15 pm. Denis J. Puska has all of the action at 8:30 pm. The games are also available on Pay Per View courtesy of Fast Hockey and a high speed internet connection is required.