Rush Add Toughness With Jay Birnie SigningSeptember 24, 2010 - Central Hockey League (CHL) Rapid City Rush
"Obviously we're excited to land Jay," said head coach Joe Ferras. "We certainly didn't like playing against him over the last two seasons. He is a big guy that can skate very well and brings a lot of grit and toughness to our line-up. He will be very effective on the fore-check with the up tempo game that we like to play he will be a player that gives other teams defenseman fits. With his experience of winning a championship and knowing the sacrifice and commitment that it takes to win Jay is exactly the type of players we want in our dressing room."
Birnie, a native of Shawnigan Lake, British Columbia will enter his 5th season as a pro. The 26 year-old brings a 6'3" 220-pound frame to the roster and despite being listed as a defenseman, can play forward as well. Last season, Birnie set a career high with 7 goals and totaled 13 points in 39 games while accumulating 99 penalty minutes. In his four seasons in Colorado, Birnie appeared in 209 games, totaled 46 points (15g, 31a) and racked up 726 penalty minutes. In 2007-08 he had a team-high 23 fighting majors, setting a personal high for PIM in a season (235).
"A couple of weeks ago I became a free agent," said Birnie. "So the first team I called was Rapid City. Obviously, they have a very good team and I've heard nothing but good things about the town and organization. They constantly sell out, making it a tough place to play. They have great fan support, take care of the guys, and it all made it an easy decision. It's always tough to be defending champs, but I feel this team stacks right up. There have been some big signings here and hopefully I can come in and fill a role for a run at another cup."
The Rush have 20 players under contract for the 2010-11 season. The current roster is as follows:
Forwards Brendon Hodge, Scott Wray, Blaine Jarvis, Luke Erickson, Ryan Menei, Erik Felde, Chris Chambers and Jeff Olitch and Kyle Laughlin.
Defenseman Riley Weselowski, Dave Grimson, Libor Ustrnul, Vladimir Hartinger, Andrew Smale, Gio Flamminio, Scott Kalinchuk, Corey Laurysen, John Wessbecker and Jay Birnie.
Goaltender Danny Battochio.
Other Rush News:
Now taking reservations for season tickets for the 2010 - 2011 Rush hockey season. For more information, contact the Rush office at 605.716.PUCK (7825) or email email@example.com
Stay informed on Rush happenings through the official Rapid City Rush team website, www.RapidCityRush.com.
Central Hockey League Stories from September 24, 2010
- Rush Add Toughness With Jay Birnie Signing - Rapid City Rush
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