Bulls Sign Forward Jared Erickson To A Tender

ericksonThe Billings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of forward Jared Erickson to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

The 5’11”, 175 lb. native of Brainerd MN comes to the Bulls after playing High School hockey for the Brainerd Warriors.

As a sophomore Erickson led all JV players in goals with 12, also adding 5 assists.

This past season as a junior, while splitting time between the JV and Varsity, Erickson again put up impressive numbers, scoring 18 goals and adding 7 assists with the JV, and 3 goals and 2 assists with the Varsity.

Erickson was coached last year by current Bulls Head Coach Jimmy Jensen. “This was definitely a good move in terms of Jared’s development”, Coach Jensen said. “By skipping his senior year of high school his season will be twice as long, and he will be forced to show that he can play against bigger, stronger players everyday.”

Coach Jensen was sure about Erickson’s scoring touch. “He’s got a next level shot, and it comes naturally to him” said Jensen. “I’ve seen him score some big time goals against some good teams, and I look forward to continuing to develop that as well as the rest of his game.”

 

Bulls sign Forward Ryan Kelly To A Tender

kelly new oneBillings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of forward Ryan Kelly to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

A native of Lombard IL, the 6’2″ 180lb. Kelly is considered one of the top high school players in the state, putting up 32 goals and 24 assists in 38 games this past season with Glenbard High School.

Kelly’s stat line as well as his face-off win percentage of 79% were enough to garner the team captain All Metro, All Conference, and All-State accolades, as well as being picked to the All-Metro All Star Team and Team Illinois Showcase Team.

Kelly was also captain of the Chicago Bruins U18 team, scoring 36 goals and 45 assists in 50 games, while maintaining 83% face-off percentage and being a CSDHL All-Star selection.

Head Coach Jimmy Jensen was impressed almost immediately. “I walked into a showcase with 500+ players and noticed him instantly”, said Jensen. “He is a dynamic player. He’s tenacious, he plays with an edge, he wins face-offs and he can score. Bulls fans get ready to remember this name.”

Jensen was not shocked to find out that as well as being a top high school hockey player Kelly also maintains a 4.2 GPA. “As much as I liked his game, I was equally impressed with his character”, said Jensen. “This is the type of leader a coach can build a team around.”

Bulls Sign Forward Ryan Stokes To A Tender

IMG_1865The Billings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of forward Ryan Stokes to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

The playmaking left wing spent the last three seasons as a member of the North St. Paul Polars varsity hockey team.

This past season the senior forward produced a scoring line of 3-16-19 in 25 regular season games. Stokes scored three goals, and assisted on another 16 on his way to receiving All-Conference Honorable Mention accolades, as well as the “Most Dedicated” award from his teammates.

Stokes prides himself on being a player that can be relied upon in any situation, and can go out there and make an impact when he doesn’t have the puck. A true hockey player throughout.

“Stokes possesses quick speed,  good hands, and great vision”, said Coach Jensen. “The excitement he has expressed to become a member of the Bulls program is rivaled only by my excitement to bring him in. He is a player who loves the game, and his attitude will carry over to the rest of the team making him not only a favorite in the locker room, but also with the fans.”

 

 

Bulls Sign Defenseman Drew Westphal To A Tender

westphalThe Billings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of defenseman Drew Westphal to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

A recently crowned 2017 State Champion, Wesphal, while serving as team captain, lead the Waterloo Warriors to win the Midwest State High School Hockey Tournament title.

The 5’8″, 180 lb. defenseman was 4th in team scoring this past season, putting up 18 points in 28 games on six goals and 12 assists.

During the State Tournament, Westphal put up three points in three games, scoring one and adding two helpers, assisting on the first goal of the Championship Game.

Voted “Defensive Player of the Year” by his teammates, Westphal will be a great addition to the Bulls’ blueline corps.

“Drew is a leader, and a player who has experienced team success in his career, and every coach wants those players”, said Coach Jensen. “He is a hardhat and hammer type of player who can contribute offensively, while being a great locker room guy.”

Bulls Sign Forward Jake Boje To A Tender

20170401_152116The Billings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of forward Jake Boje to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

Boje comes to the Bulls following a great career at St. Paul Highland Park High School.

The 6’1″ 170 lb. Boje played Varsity for the “Scots” in his hometown of St. Paul, where as a junior last year he finished the season tied for third in overall scoring, with 21 points on 11 goals and 10 assists.

Boje followed that season up by leading all forwards in scoring his senior year, finishing second in overall scoring with 30 points on 16 goals and 14 assists, and being named to the All-Conference team.

Head Coach Jimmy Jensen was optimistic about his most recent signing. “Jake is a talented goal-scorer who knows where to be on the ice”, said Coach Jensen. “It’s not luck that the puck just ends up on his stick in good scoring areas. He works to find space and get open in the tough areas around the net, and then he finishes on his chances.”

Bulls Sign Defenseman Blake Shuck To a Tender

FullSizeRenderThe Billings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of defenseman Blake Shuck to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

Shuck comes to the Bulls after a solid career manning the blue line for the River Lakes Stars, a high school program in Minnesota.

The 6’2″, 210 lb. native of Spicer MN quarterbacked the power-play for the Stars, leading all defenseman with 13 points on six goals and seven assists, and was rewarded by being named to the All-Conference team.

A three sport standout athlete in high school, Shuck was offered a scholarship to play college football, but instead is following his love for the game of hockey to Billings.

“He will be an impact player on our blue line from the start”, said Coach Jensen. “In this game you need to build a strong D-Core to be successful, and I am extremely happy to begin building that core with a player like Blake.”

 

Bulls Sign Goaltender James Engen to a Tender

JimmyEngenThe Billings Bulls are proud to announce the signing of goaltender James Engen to a tender for the 2017-18 season.

Engen comes to the Bulls following a stellar career at Brainerd High School in Minnesota, where he backstopped the Varsity Hockey Team to one of it’s more impressive records in the past few seasons.

Engen posted a record of 8-4-1 during the regular season, with a goals against average of 2.54 and a 8.93 save percentage. He took his team to the section semi-final game where he would lose to the eventual State Championship Runner-Up.

Engen was credited with some big wins this past year, including 3 wins over the 2-time defending section champs from Bemidji, with one coming in the form of a OT win in this years playoffs. For his efforts Engen was named to the All-Conference Team.

Engen is the first player to sign a tender with new Head Coach Jimmy Jensen. “For me, it was an easy decision,” said Jensen regarding the tender offer to Engen. “I was watching him play against some of the top players in Minnesota all season, and I know his goaltending Coach at Brainerd High School was the legendary NHL goaltender Chico Resch. After speaking with Chico, and then with James about the goals he has set for himself, I knew he was a good fit for the Bulls.”

Coach Jensen feels confident in bringing in the first year goaltender saying, “Any night that James is in net for us, we have a chance to win.”

Billings Bulls Name Jensen As New Head Coach

jimmy
The Billings Bulls are proud to announce
that Jimmy Jensen has been named the team’s new head coach.
As a native of Maplewood, Minnesota, Jensen comes to the Bulls with a lifetime of hockey knowledge.
Jensen began his coaching career in the NA3HL in the 2014-15 season, when he joined the Minnesota Flying Aces organization. Starting the season as the Aces’ assistant coach, Jensen went on to take over the head coach title midway through the season. After the completion of his first season, he remained at the helm as the Aces’ head coach for the 2015-16 campaign.
“I am extremely excited for this opportunity,” said an eager Jensen. “The Billings Bulls have had a long-standing reputation as a top-notch organization. The city of Billings has been a great destination location to live, and play junior hockey, for the past 24 years.”
The well-rounded Jensen originally made the move to coaching after a lengthy career on the ice, which includes years of NCAA and professional playing experience.
Commenting on the presence of junior hockey in Billings, Jensen said, “There is a great fan base in the city of Billings. The fans have supported the team since the days of their first season, back when they played in the NAHL.”
Looking ahead, the city of Billings can expect a new revival of the Bulls with Jensen behind the bench in the 2017-18.
“The team will include a roster of players who play the game the right way,” says Jensen. With his coaching style, Jensen plans to provide the community with exciting hockey to watch on the ice.
“My goal is to give the community a quality brand of hockey every night,” said Jensen. “I’m excited to get this program back to the winning ways that the great city of Billings is used to.”