National Ice Hockey League Division 2 (South)

Two more sign on for Oxford

14th June 2016    News

Oxford City Stars continued their preparation for next season with two defensive signings.  Firstly the Stars have announced the recruitment of Bracknell Hornets Net minder Mark Duffy to the squad.  Duffy 28, has iced for the Berkshire squad for the last 2 seasons joins Oxford in his first move away from his home ice. New recruit Duffy stated “My expectations for the season are to push the supposed ‘big clubs’  in this division for the top positions. I expect to be in with a chance to win every game against any team Oxford plays, and I’m looking forward to finishing the season with a long playoff run too!” Mark added “ I hope to push Tommy (Annetts) for game time, and to keep him performing at his best by being at my best right from the word go.  Tommy and I have known each other for a long time, so I’m looking forward to picking up a strong net minding partnership with him”

Duffy said “I know it’s a close group at Oxford, I know a few of the boys from around the league or from playing roller hockey too and I’m looking forward to getting into the group, having a laugh with the guys, and doing everything I can for them every night. With this Oxford City Stars team, it looks like there have been a lot of great players signed so far, and I’m really looking forward to getting skating with them. Playing against Oxford last season, you always knew you were going to get a tough game.  Every 50/50 puck would be a battle, and the Stars wouldn’t give us an inch!  The team was always well drilled, they knew what they were doing in every situation, and they gave everything for each other.  You can tell from the outside in that the team is a very tight knit group”

Duffy added “Having coaches, managers, owners and everything focussed heading into the off-season gives everyone around the club piece of mind, and lets the players and coaches concentrate on the important stuff like getting ready for next year.  It looks like everything in Oxford is continuing right where they left off at the end of the playoffs,  the players that I know, are already looking forward to pre-season, rather than being thankful for any time off and holidays– which will surely go a long way towards helping us kick off on the front foot”

 Oxford Coach Anderson said of his capture “I am looking forward to seeing Mark in a Stars uniform. We actually spoke last summer when I was looking for goalies, but Mark decided to stay in Bracknell.  This coming season With Shannon Long being unavailable, I was looking for the right guy to fill that role and I believe that Mark is perfect for it. He is a guy who has the talent to play at this level, he will keep Tom Annetts on his toes and push Tommy to be at his best every night. Mark is also a great team guy, who understands his role and will be a great guy to have around. The biggest things I look for when recruiting for this position when we already have a number one keeper is someone who understands that he may not play every week, but will be positive in the dressing room but can play comfortably at this level when called upon. Mark ticks all these boxes and I think he will be a fantastic addition for us”

Also putting pen to paper is young defenseman Jake Florey,  Florey 21, joins his older brother Josh in returning to the Stars squad for the coming campaign.  For such a young player, Jake has already played 85 times for his home town and has been showing dramatic improvements over the last year. Florey stated “ The close season has been very good for me, it started off with a break and then straight back into getting fit and losing a few pounds for the start of the season!  I’m currently the lightest I’ve been for a long time and with hard work it will keep coming off” Florey added “I’m looking forward to the season starting and hopefully we can keep up the good performances and beat some of the top teams again. One of the things I love most right now has to be how tight our dressing room is.  I can’t imagine there is another team where every player gets on as well as our team and I think this helped us massively last year to pick up some of those results!”

Head Coach Anderson added “Jake had a fantastic season last year. He was by far the most improved player on our team and forged a great partnership with Boris Rusizca. The way Jake improved along with getting in great physical shape and having Shane Moore as a mentor, were real big factors in his great performances. I will now be looking for Jake to push on this season and try to make himself a regular top four D-man in our team. He certainly has all the tools and his desire is now hitting home, that desire to be better every week and to work hard in the gym, these things will certainly give him the best chance of becoming a class act. Jake is also great to have around the dressing room and helps to keep the place loose and positive. Im really looking forward to working with him and delighted that he is back”

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