June 25, 2013, Victoria, BC (ISN) – After capping off illustrious careers with the Victoria Cougars, Brody Coulter will be attending the University of Victoria this fall while Sam Rice will be doing the same but at the University of Central Oklahoma.
Coulter, who last year became the sixth player in Cougars history to lay claim to the Doug Morton Trophy, won the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League scoring title by finishing the season with 118 points.
After pondering a long list of college options from both Canada and the United States, Coulter decided to remain in Victoria and play for the hometown Vikes. A natural born leader, Coulter is a perfect example of what a Cougar truly is.
“Brody is hard working and possesses a strong desire to improve,” Cougars head coach Mark Van Helvoirt said. “I am very proud of the man he has become and I know he will do well at the collegiate level.”
The feelings are mutual.
“I cannot thank the Cougars organization enough for a great three years. From the coaches, volunteers, directors, and players, they all created a first class experience and a program that is second to none,” Coulter said.
During his tenure, Coulter amassed 103 goals and 159 assists for 262 points in 152 career games.
Uvic is a member of the British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League.
While his friend and line mate is going to study and play hockey locally, Rice will be over 3,400 kilometers away in Edmond, Okla. Ranked 71st in 2012 by CNN Money for America’s best small cities, Edmond, with a population of just over 83,000, is located 23 kilometers north of Oklahoma City.
A four-year veteran, Rice recounts his first few days and last few days as a Cougar.
“When I became a member of the Cougars, I did not know anyone but that feeling went away quickly,” Rice said. “It has been the best four years of my life and I am sad that it is over. But it has helped me achieve my goal of getting an education through hockey.”
Rice also went on to say that being a member of the Cougars has been such an honour.
“The pride that all the volunteers and coaching staff have is infectious. It allows the players to focus solely on playing hockey,” Rice said. “The coaching staff puts countless hours into the team resulting in players growing and moving on to the BCHL and college hockey.”
With Rice now gone off to college, Van Helvoirt is going to miss his protégé.
“Sam was a great Cougar, one of the best to ever wear the jersey. It has been an honour to be his coach and to watch him grow into the leader and the player he is today. I wish Sam nothing but the best,” Van Helvoirt said.
In 212 career games, Rice recorded 84 goals and 194 assists for 278 points.
UCO is a member of the American Collegiate Hockey Association.
According to Van Helvoirt, he expects to have more announcements from last year’s graduation class.