The Stockton Thunder, proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s New York Islanders and AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers, have announced the signing of Ryan Howse per Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Rich Kromm.
“Ryan’s numbers in juniors are extraordinary,” Kromm said. “From his second year on he was a 30-plus goal scorer, even finishing his last season with just over 50 goals for Chilliwack. Ryan has a great skill set, is a legitimate scorer on a consistent basis and has decent size. If he’s motivated and works hard, I believe he’ll find success.”
Howse, 22, is a former WHL hockey standout winger from the Chilliwack Bruins where he is the franchise’s all-time leader in games played, goals, and points. Over the course of his five year career with Chilliwack, Howse amassed 262 games played, 140 goals, 77 assists and 217 points.
The 5’11”, 194 lbs. winger became the first ever draft selection of Chilliwack after being selected third overall in the 2006 WHL Bantam Draft. Howse led his team in both goals and points for three straight seasons, crossing the 50-goal plateau in his final year with the team.
Howse was drafted by the Calgary Flames in the third round of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft and turned pro with the Abbotsford Heat in 2011-12, playing in 39 contests and finishing his season with 6 goals and 3 assists. In 2012-13 the Prince George, BC native spent 20 games apiece with Abbotsford and the Utah Grizzlies.
In 2013-14, Howse took a year off from hockey for personal reasons.
“I took the season off to rediscover my passion for the game,” Howse said. “I had the opportunity to coach at the youth level and it reminded me how much I love the game and that I was meant to be a hockey player. I’m very excited for October to come!”
A veteran coach within the WHL, Kromm was familiar with Howse’s play for Chilliwack and despite the forward’s year away from the game, the Thunder coach is happy to extend the opportunity to continue his career.
“Ryan had a difficult time adjusting to life as a pro and lost a bit of motivation,” Kromm said. “He’s hungry to play again and, for us, it’s worth giving him a second chance to see what he can do.”
Season tickets for the Thunder’s 10th season in Stockton are on sale now. To learn more about becoming a Season Ticket Holder, contact a Thunder Account Executive today by calling 209-373-1500 or by visiting StocktonThunder.com.