The North American 3 Hockey League conducted their 2016 Entry Draft on Tuesday June 14th and the Billings Bulls selected 9 players. The following is an outline of those draft picks. The Billings Bulls organization are proud to welcome these players and their families into the organization!
First Round (13th overall): Ben Allen, Forward from the Dallas Stars 18AAA team. Ben is a very skilled player who is proud and excited to have been selected so high in the draft. Ben was also selected in the NAHL draft conducted last week (Tuesday June 7th).
Second Round (61st overall): Carter Yang, Defenseman from the Colorado Rampage 18AAA team. Carter is a strong puck moving defenseman that will bring a much needed skill to the Bulls blue line. He is solid defensively and is excited to be drafted by the Bulls.
Third Round (109th overall): Nolan Sawchuk, Defenseman from Burnsville High School. Nolan is a big, strong skating defenseman that will lead the Bulls to not just a better shut down style, but smart puck moving decisions. Nolan was also selected in the NAHL draft conducted last week (Tuesday June 7th).
Third Round (138th overall): Jake Eischen, Defenseman from Hastings High School. Sticking with the defenseman theme, Billings selects another defenseman. Jake is a raw defenseman who plays a smart shut down style. His skating is strong and Bulls fans can expect Jake to have a great impact on the Bulls blue line.
Fourth Round (157’th overall): Alex Lofink, Forward from Islanders Elite. Alex is a San Jose California native who has played the last two years in the Northeast. Alex brings strong junior experience to the Bulls line up. Alex is a skilled forward who skates well and brings the hockey smarts the Bulls are looking for to get to the Silver Cup during the 2016-2017 campaign.
Fifth Round (205’th overall): Sheamus Stoyle, Forward from the Breckenridge Bucks. Sheamus, who goes by the nickname of “Moose,” is no stranger to the coaching staff as he played for Coach Richardson two seasons ago. A veteran of junior hockey and has been a leader on every team he has played on. Sheamus is a gritty forward who defends well, sticks to details and will be a big part of the Bulls leaders.
Sixth Round (253rd overall): Alex Hagen, Defenseman from Grand Forks North Dakota. Alex is a physical defenseman who isn’t afraid to throw his body around and when he connects, the opposition will feel it. The Bulls staff focused a lot of upgrading the Bulls defensive core during the draft.
Seventh Round (301st overall): Sam Novak, Goalie from Grafton Spoilers. The only goalie selected by the Billings Bulls in the draft, Sam is an athletic goalie. Sam is a goalie the Bulls staff identified early in the summer and are proud to welcome Sam and his family to the organization.
Eighth Round (349’th overall): Eric Miner, Forward from the Huron All Stars. The only player selected from South Dakota by the Billings Bulls in the draft, Eric is described as being a “raw” player by the coaching staff. Eric will bring competition to the Bulls line up. The Bulls are proud to welcome another player from the Northern Plains District to the organization.
Bulls Head Coach Michael Richardson said he and his staff feel confident in their draft day selections and tendered players. “I am really proud of where we are after the draft. With the players returning from our team last year, our tendered players and our drafted players, I am excited to get started,” Richardson said.
The players will be reporting to Billings at the end of August for training camp. Stay tuned for more news updates as the recruiting season continues into the end of June and all of July.