Florence, SC Becomes First SPHL Expansion City

May 11, 2005 - Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) News Release

ASHEVILLE, NC– Southern Professional Hockey League Commissioner, Tom Coolen, announced today that Florence, South Carolina will join the league for the 2005-06 season. The team will play in the 7,200-seat Florence Civic Center.

“As a league we are extremely excited about the city of Florence as well as the addition of a team from the state of South Carolina into the SPHL,” Coolen said.

“I am thrilled with the decision made by the Florence Civic Center Board,” said Dr. Rich Hoodenpyle, Majority Owner of the new team. “This is a win-win situation. The SPHL continues to expand to strong markets. Florence (Pee Dee) has a rich hockey tradition and the fans have always supported their team. Personally, I look forward to building a very strong team with excellent and enthusiastic players, coaches and administrative staff. This Pee Dee team will be built on the strong principles of excellence on the ice, excellence in entertainment for the fans, and excellence in business practices. I anticipate a long successful run in Florence. I am very excited!!

Florence will host a press conference on Tuesday the 24th of May in the Florence Civic Center. Exact location and time will be announced by the team.

The SPHL will begin its second season in October. The nine-team league now consists of Asheville (NC), Columbus (GA), Fayetteville (NC), Florence (SC), Huntsville (AL), Jacksonville (FL), Knoxville (TN), Orlando (FL) and Winston-Salem (NC).

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