TULSA, OK – The Tulsa Junior Oilers, a new franchise in the Western States Hockey League, announced the signing of Brad Raucci and Chris James for their inaugural 2012-13 season.
Raucci, an 18-year old forward, will be starting his junior career after spending the last two seasons competing at the midget level with the Arizona Runners. A 6’3” 225-pound right-wing, Raucci originally hails from Chicago and is looking forward to taking the next step in his hockey development.
“I’m looking forward to playing this level of hockey,” Raucci said. “I know it might take some getting used to but I expect it to be a faster, more competitive style.”
Raucci lists his shot as his best attribute and enjoys the physical aspects of the game.
“I like grinding and battling in the corners because that’s the gritty part of hockey,” said Raucci. “I like getting into it with the opposing team and going to the front of the net because I feel like it’s hard to move me out of there and bump me off the puck.”
James, a goaltender out of Burlington, Ontario, played at the midget level last season for the Arapaho Warriors U-18 squad in Colorado and at the U-16 level with the Colorado Rampage.
“My goalie coach recommended the Tulsa program to me and told me it was going to be quality hockey,” James remembered. “When I got to meet Coach Zac, we hit it off right away. I really like his approach and I’m looking forward to having a winning season.”
The 18-year old James enjoys watching athletic goaltenders in the NHL like Mike Smith (Phoenix) and Jonathan Quick (Los Angeles). The 5’10” 185-pound netminder sees his style as similar to some of the elite puck-stoppers.
“I’m a hybrid goalie and I like to be active in net and involved with the puck whenever I can,” remarked James. “I think my mental game is strong and I never try to get too high or too low during a game.”
The Junior Oilers home opener at the Oilers Ice Center is Friday, October 12 against the Texas Junior Brahmas. General admission tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for kids ages five and under. For more information call 918-632-PUCK.