Cotton Kings Sign Goaltender Gajda to Roster
LUBBOCK, TX: January 27, 2006 - The Lubbock Cotton Kings completed a roster move this morning in preparation for their game against Oklahoma City tonight by signing free agent goaltender Tyson Gajda to a contract and placing Brett Koscielny on the injured reserve list.
Gajda (guy-duh) joins the Kings after being released earlier in the week by the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees. The 24 year-old native of Westfield, Massachusetts is in his second year of professional hockey, after spending last season in reserve roles with the Central Hockey League's Memphis RiverKings and Topeka Tarantulas and the United Hockey League's (UHL) Kansas City Outlaws. This season, the second-year pro began the season in training camp with the Killer Bees. He was released at the conclusion of camp and signed with the Charlotte Checkers of the ECHL. Gajda was with the Checkers as an emergency goaltender and was later released and rejoined the Killer Bees on January 18th to fill in for goaltender Terry Dunbar, who was granted a leave of absence. In his pro career, Gajda has a 1-1-0 record, a 5.03 GAA and an 88.7% save percentage in four games played. Prior to turning pro, the 6'1 185-pound netminder was a standout goaltender at NCAA Div. III power Oswego State (SUNY-Oswego) from 00/01 - 03/04. He combined for a 50-20-6 record over his tenure at Oswego State, which included a loss in the Div. III National Championship game against Norwich in 2003. Gajda also attended Northwood Prep in Lake Placid, New York, which has produced several NHL'ers including former New York Rangers goaltender Mike Richter.
Koscielny will hit the injured reserve list with a lower-body injury. The rookie goaltender has a 6-9-0 record and ranks fifth in the CHL with a 2.61 GAA and seventh with a 91.7% save percentage. Koscielny was honored as the Oakley CHL Goaltender of the Month in November.
The Kings begin a three-in-three weekend tonight against the Oklahoma City Blazers, before beginning a home-and-home set in Odessa Saturday night. Gajda will be with the Kings tonight for the 7:05 pm faceoff at the Lubbock Municipal Coliseum. Individual game ticket information is available by contacting the Cotton Kings office at (806) 747-7825. Additional Kings info can be found online via their official site at www.cottonkings.com.
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