The UNB Varsity Reds hockey program is proud to announce the addition of two top defensemen to the 2014-15 lineup.
Alex Wall, a native of Mount Pearl, Newfoundland, will join the V-Reds after completing his degree at the University of Prince Edward Island, as will Randy Gazzola from Thorald, Ontario, who was a key member of the QMJHL Champion Val d’Or Foreurs this past season.
The 6’2’, 225 lb Gazzola had a breakout year as a 20-year-old in Val d’Or with 16 - 58 -74 points, which made him the second leading scorer for defenseman in the QMJHL during the regular season. He continued his dominance in the post season scoring 24 points in 24 playoff games to help his team secure a role in the Memorial Cup Championships. Gazzola was named to the QMJHL 1st All Star team and was a finalist for the Emile Bouchard award as the league’s top defenseman.
Gazzola made his QMJHL debut with the Halifax Mooseheads before being traded to Val d’Or during the 2012-13 season. He attended the San Jose Sharks rookie camp this summer before confirming his decision to attend UNB where he will study Kinesiology.
Wall played four seasons in the QMJHL with St. John's, Montreal, Moncton and Quebec and amassed 22 goals and 92 assists in that time. He was a member of the QMJHL Champion Moncton Wildcats and had a career best 6-43-49 for the Quebec Ramparts in his seaon as a 20-year-old.
Wall also spent three seasons with UPEI in the AUS, racking up eight goals and 27 assists. The 5’10”, 190lb speedster was a member of the AUS All Stars who won the 2013 Winter Universiade where he played a key role in the success of the team. Wall was a three-time Academic All-Canadian at UPEI where he completed his degree in just three years. He will be enrolled in UNB’s graduate studies program.
"We're very excited to have Alex and Randy join the blue line for us," V-Reds coach Gardiner MacDougall said. "They are two high impact players who both have outstanding pedigrees and Memorial Cup experience. Alex is an outstanding puck mover who can be very active on the rush while Randy has outstanding puck sense and makes great decisions at both ends of the rink.”
Associate coach Rob Hennigar, a former student-athlete for the V-Reds, agrees.
"They are both great players and great students, both key elements to succeeding here. They will both fit in well with what we're trying to accomplish on the ice, in the classroom and in the community."
The Varsity Reds, along with their newest defenseman, open up their AUS calendar with a visit to UPEI on October 11. The home opener lands on the following Friday, October 17, when the Aitken Centre will play host to a battle with Dalhousie.
Tickets are available for students and general public at the Aitken Centre box office, by calling 506-447-3333 or by clicking here.