The South Carolina Stingrays announced today that the team has resigned forward Patrick Gaul. In keeping with club policy, terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
"We are extremely excited as an organization to have Patrick back in South Carolina for the 2013-14 season," said Head Coach and Director of Hockey Operations Spencer Carbery. "He was a great addition to our group last year and brought a tremendous amount of energy and passion to the rink every day."
After beginning his rookie campaign with the Mississippi RiverKings of the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) last season, Gaul, 23, dressed in 33 regular-season contests with the Stingrays earning six goals and four assists for 10 points. In four Kelly Cup Playoff games, the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, native registered one assist. In Mississippi, he added 20 points (10 goals, 10 assists) in 31 games.
"I'm really excited to be coming back," said Gaul. "It was a long and strenuous season last year moving around, getting cut a couple times and moving from league to league. It will be nice to head back to a place where I like the coach, the coach likes my playing style, the fans appreciated the way I play and I understand what is asked of me." Click here to listen to the complete interview.
Known on the ice for his high-energy style of play, Gaul instantly became a fan favorite for his long hair that he was growing to support Locks of Love, a non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to children in the United States and Canada suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis.
"It's oddly short now," Gaul mentioned. "It was so long for 15 to 16 months. I took my mom with me and she took pictures as they were cutting it and I donated it to Locks of Love two weeks ago. It was nice to do. I don't know if I will grow it out as long as I had it before, but I have to have it longer than it is now."
Prior to turning pro, the 5-foot-8, 175-pound forward completed a four-year career at Notre Dame totaling 10 points (three goals, seven assists) in 80 contests and helping the Fighting Irish capture a CCHA Championship in 2008-09.