Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Hildenbrand signs on with Flags

With the addition of Steve Hildenbrand to the lineup, the Port Huron Flags look to have a very effective front line for the 2006-07 season.

New to the United Hockey League, the recently-signed Hildenbrand is ready to give his all in Port Huron.

"Obviously, every year that you play, you want to win a championship," said Hildenbrand. "Hopefully, we have a good season and play hard every night. You can't really predict things, but if a team works hard, good things usually happen."

Hildenbrand comes to the Blue Water Area from the ECHL’s San Diego Gulls, where he recorded 29 goals and 40 assists in 70 games. At 5-foot-10 and 182 pounds, he still spent 90 minutes in the penalty box last season.

"Steve does everything," Port Huron head coach Stan Drulia said. "He can take advantage of the power play and also kill penalties. He's not afraid to scrap, and is an all-around, legitimate, No. 1 center."

Hildenbrand signed with the Ontario Hockey League’s Windsor Spitfires in 2000. Previously, he had played a year at Miami University in Ohio. Coming to Port Huron was a bit of a surprise for Hildenbrand. The San Diego Gulls were forced to suspend operations for 2006-07, and the Belle River, Ontario native was looking to play closer to home.

"I’ve known B.J. Adams for seven years and I heard about the opportunity from him," said Hildenbrand. “I don't know a great deal about Port Huron, but I've got faith in the organization."

The Flags now have nine players bound to contract for the upcoming season - Ryan Gillis, Paul Snell, Shayne Tomlinson, Trevor Edwards, B.J. Adams, Josh Elzinga, Ryan Markham, Colt King and now Hildenbrand.


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