The Razorback Hockey team is pleased to announce that Nick Bretzger has formally committed to play at Arkansas. A 5’9″ 160 lb. goaltender from Rockaway, New Jersey, Bretzger recently completed his season with the WSHL Springfield Express. A 1995 birth year, Bretzger was named team MVP for the Express this season after posting a 3.32 GAA and 0.911 save percentage. Bretzger finished the season in the top ten league-wide for games played (47), shots faced (1489), and wins (23).
Jeremy Law, Head Coach for the Express, commented, “I was so pleased Nick decided to attend the University of Arkansas. It’s a great school and has an exceptional hockey program that continues to grow and improve every season. I have no doubt that Nick will be successful both on and off the ice.”
Prior to his time with the Express, Bretzger played in 34 games for the Tahoe Icemen of the WSHL where he faced a league high 1612 shots. He also logged time during his substantial junior career in the NPHL and the USPHL. Twice invited as a National USA Hockey Festival goaltender, the invite-only process by which USA Hockey identifies who will represent the US at national and international levels, Bretzger was also twice named MVP of his high school, St. Peter’s Prep.
Said Bretzger, “the hockey program is run in such a professional way. The way Coach Gallini runs his practices gets the best out of his players, and he expects them to compete one-hundred percent on every drill. The program will allow me to develop into a better and more experienced goalie.” About the University more generally, Bretzger added, “I quickly fell in love with the campus and Fayetteville. I am very excited to start my college hockey career with the Razorbacks.”
Bretzger becomes the tenth player in a 16-17 recruiting class that now has seven different states represented (Texas, New Jersey, Kansas, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Missouri, and California). He joins the following players:
F-Drew Hill (Dallas Jr. Stars, NA3HL)
F-Garrett Jackson (McKinney Northstars)
F-Alex Kueser (Eureka High School)
F-Chris Weatherly (HC Dallas AAA, NAPHL)
F-Ben Koester (Rochester Ice Hawks, NA3HL)
D-Alex DeGuire (Skipjacks Hockey Club, USPHL)
D-Dominic De la Guardia (Portland Jr. Pirates, USPHL)
D-Jake Jones (Bobcaygeon Storm, GMHL)
D-Blake Sibley (HC Dallas AAA, NAPHL)
The University of Arkansas is the only SEC school to field two hockey teams. The 15-16 season marked the program’s inaugural season at Division I, which produced the highest finish in ACHA history for any team in its first DI season after moving from DIII. Meanwhile, the Division III team boasts five SECHC conference titles and three appearances at the National Tournament.
The 2016-17 Division I & III schedules will be released in early summer. All home games are played at The Jones Center for Families in Springdale.