Stingrays Sign Rookie Forwards Bligh and JekeAug 30, 2016
The South Carolina Stingrays, proud affiliate of the Washington Capitals, have signed rookie forwards Nick Bligh and Travis Jeke, Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Ryan Warsofsky announced today.
"We're excited to welcome Nick and Travis," said Warsofsky. "Nick is a guy who is coming off an injury that we'll take our time with, but we did our homework on him and know he was a late bloomer in college after a great junior career. He is really good around the net. Talking to his past coaches, he has an offensive knack. Travis can skate really well and has some good skill. He's going to bring some energy to our lineup, and as he just started playing forward, his growth can be big here. We're excited to add both guys to the mix of forwards."
Bligh, 23, joins the Stingrays after completing his four-year collegiate career at Dartmouth College. Despite missing time due to an injury, he enjoyed a career year in his senior season in 2015-16 with the Big Green. The native of Milton, Mass. scored 18 points (10 goals, eight assists) in just 22 games last season. He finished his NCAA career with 42 points (19 goals, 23 assists) in 92 career games. Prior to Dartmouth, the 6-foot, 190-pound forward spent one season with the South Shore Kings of the Eastern Junior Hockey League (EHL) in 2011-12. He was named the league's rookie of the year, scoring 85 points (22 goals, 63 assists) in only 43 games. He made the league's All-Star team, and finished second on the Kings in points to teammate Jimmy Vesey, the 2016 Hobey Baker Award winner who recently signed with the New York Rangers.
"I got a call from Ryan Warsofsky, and that got the ball rolling on getting my first crack at the pros," said Bligh. "Ever since our first conversation, things progressed well and I knew I wanted to be part of the organization. My experience at Dartmouth was great, and as I come to the Stingrays, I'm really looking to build on what I've learned so far."
Jeke, 23, converted to forward in his senior season at Boston College in 2015-16. He scored three points (two goals, one assist) in 37 games for the Eagles. He patrolled the blue line for the prior three seasons, appearing in 22 games as a freshman in 2012-13. He notched 12 points (five goals, seven assists) in 69 career NCAA games, and helped the Eagles to 2013-14 Hockey East regular season conference title. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound native of Pittsburgh, Penn. played two seasons of high school hockey for Northwood Prep School, scoring 70 points in 70 games while playing one season at forward and one at defense.
"I knew I wanted to play pro, and as soon as South Carolina was an option, I was extremely excited," said Jeke. "It's a great organization and city. I'll look to transition into playing forward at the pro level. I pride myself on working hard and getting in on the forecheck and pressuring the defense, and I'm excited to do that with the Stingrays."
The Stingrays roster now stands at 16 skaters (10 forwards, six defensemen). The club will announce the addition of another forward tomorrow at 3 p.m. via the club's Facebook page.
The club's 24th season in the Lowcountry starts on October 22. 2016-17 Season Ticket Packages are on sale now featuring discounted pricing and great benefits! For more information, fans may call the Stingrays' offices at 843-744-2248 or visit StingraysHockey.com.