WMU News

Bishai latest Bronco to sign pro hockey contract

April 2, 2002

KALAMAZOO -- Mike Bishai of Edmonton, Alta., who recently completed a four-year career with the Western Michigan University hockey team, has signed an Amateur Tryout Contract with the Hamilton Bulldogs of the American Hockey League.

Bishai joined the Bulldogs on Thursday, March 28. Hamilton is the top affiliate of the
Edmonton Oilers.

"This is a tremendous opportunity for Mike as he embarks on a professional career," said WMU head coach Jim Culhane, "Mike has all the tools to be successful at the next level
and we're very excited for him."

Bishai shared Bronco team scoring honors last season, netting 10 goals and distributing 27 assists in 34 games. He also moved into 19th place in WMU all-time scoring, finishing with 51 goals and 94 assists for 145 points in 132 games. He earned All-American honors two seasons ago after leading the NCAA in scoring and assists.

An undrafted free agent, Bishai is one of several Bronco seniors entering the professional ranks.

Forward Bryan Farquhar of Almonte, Ont., has appeared in seven games for the Kalamazoo Wings, having recently scored his first goal for the United Hockey League club. Volunteer coach Brendan Kenny of Edmonton, Alta., who is completing his master's degree at WMU, came out of retirement and has appeared in six games on defense for the K-Wings.

Defensemen Austin Miller of Vestal, N.Y., and Ryan Crane of Mississauga, Ont., were both selected by the K-Wings in the 2002 UHL North American Amateur Draft March 12, but chose to pursue opportunities in the East Coast Hockey League. Miller is now a member of the Mississippi Sea Wolves, while Crane is expected to join the Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies in time for the ECHL playoffs.

Goaltender Jeff Reynaert of Sterling Heights, Mich., made 30 saves in his debut March 20 with the ECHL Mobile Mysticks, a 4-1 loss to the Greenville Grrrowl. Ironically, one of the goals Reynaert surrendered was to former WMU teammate Steve Rymsha.

Forward Anthony Battaglia of Chicago, chosen by the Rockford Ice Hogs in the UHL North American Amateur Draft, has opted to stay at WMU to finish his degree.

Media contact: Daniel Jankowski, 269 387-4138, daniel.jankowski@wmich.edu

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