The USA Hockey Tier III Junior National Champion North Iowa Bulls of the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL), are pleased to announce that forward James Hughes has committed to play NCAA hockey for University of Wisconsin-Superior to continue his academic and hockey development.
UW-Superior is a member of the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association competing at the NCAA Division III level. UW-Superior is a great fit for Hughes with the smaller campus and commitment to academic success for their athletes. James is expected to be an immediate contributor to the Yellow Jackets program.
"Jimmy was an integral part of the Bulls National Championship success. He not only led by example on the score sheet but also as a captain who cared about the well-being of his teammates,” said Bulls head coach Todd Sanden.
Hughes commented on his time in North Iowa with the Bulls. "I had to adapt when I first came here from Coulee Region in the NAHL, but after settling in with the team and the community I couldn't imagine playing anywhere else. Our coaching staff provided everything necessary for our team to be successful and for me to continue to develop as a player,” said Hughes. “The community support was amazing. Our fans are the most dedicated in junior hockey and it’s fun to play in the arena when it's packed and people are going crazy.”
The Bulls success on the ice has led to opportunities off the ice for many of its' players. With the recent college commitments of Eric Behrend and James Hughes, the total number of Bulls players continuing their development at a higher level has risen to 11.
Bulls defenseman Chancie Hanson was recently offered a tender by the Kenai River Brown Bears after competing at their pre-draft tryout.
The native of Wasilla, Alaska came to the North Iowa Bulls with an idea in mind to secure a playing opportunity in the North American Hockey League. That goal became a reality when Hanson inked a tender with the Kenai River Brown Bears.
"The fact that Chancie will have a chance to play close to home is a bonus for him and his family. Chancie was a regular in the Bulls' lineup after the holiday break and is a steady defenseman who keeps things simple and makes great decisions with the puck. Chancie understands the game at the junior level and possesses the strengths to continue his development en route to a collegiate opportunity," said Sanden.
The North Iowa Bulls wish Chancie Hanson and his family congratulations and the best of luck with Kenai River. Chancie marks the 6th player tendered from North Iowa by North American Hockey League teams this season.