Rochester Grizzlies

The Rochester Grizzlies (formerly the Rochester Ice Hawks) are a Tier III junior ice hockey team in the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL). The team plays their home games at the 2,600-seat Rochester Recreation Center, located in Rochester, Minnesota. The team typically plays more than 45 regular season games, in addition to showcase and postseason games.

Rochester Grizzlies
Rochester Grizzlies logo.png
CityRochester, Minnesota
LeagueNA3HL
DivisionCentral
FoundedMay 1996
Home arenaRochester Rec Center
ColorsBlack, gold, brown
     
Owner(s)Craig Patrick and Mike Cooper
Head coachChris Ratzloff
MediaThe Rochester Post-Bulletin, KTTC, KAAL
AffiliatesAustin Bruins (NAHL)
Franchise history
1996–2009Minnesota Ice Hawks
2009–2018Rochester Ice Hawks
2018–presentRochester Grizzlies

HistoryEdit

 
Rochester Ice Hawks logo

The franchise originally joined the Minnesota Junior Hockey League (MnJHL) in May 1996 as the Minnesota Ice Hawks[1] and played in Le Sueur, Minnesota, until 2002. The team was owned and managed by Michael Fatis and coached by Nick Fatis. The franchise moved to Rochester, Minnesota, in 2002 after the Rochester Mustangs of the United States Hockey League ceased operations.[2] They officially changed their name prior to the 2009–10 season to the Rochester Ice Hawks.[3][4][5]

Following the 2014–15 season, most of the active members of the Minnesota Junior Hockey League moved to the United States Premier Hockey League as part of a new Midwest Division. In May, the Ice Hawks were accepted as an expansion team into the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) for the 2015–16 season.[6]

In November 2016, head coach Nick Fatis, the only head coach in the history of the Ice Hawks franchise, stepped down for personal reasons. He was replaced by assistant Eric Hofmann.[7] Hofmann was replaced by Chris Blaisius, formerly the head coach of the Willmar WarHawks, in December 2017.[8]

After the completion of the 2017–18 season, Michael Fatis sold the franchise to the ownership of the Tier II North American Hockey League's Austin Bruins, consisting of Craig Patrick and Mike Cooper.[9] The new ownership rebranded the franchise to match the Bruins and the team was changed to the Rochester Grizzlies. On April 23, they named Casey Mignone as the new head coach and general manager for the 2018–19 season.[10] After one season, Mignone was hired as an assistant with the St. Cloud Blizzard in the NAHL[11] and was replaced by Chris Ratzloff.[12]

Season-by-season recordsEdit

Season GP W L T OTL Pts GF GA Finish Playoffs
Minnesota Junior Hockey League
1999–00 36 14 21 0 1 29 146 226 5th, MnJHL
2000–01 36 12 24 0 24 130 229 5th, MnJHL
2001–02 42 11 26 5 27 122 216 7th, MnJHL
2002–03 42 15 23 4 34 163 195 5th, MnJHL
2003–04 40 27 10 3 0 57 205 130 2nd, MnJHL Nationals semifinalist
2004–05 48 36 7 4 1 77 261 124 1st, MnJHL Won Bush Cup
Nationals appearance
2005–06 48 40 7 1 0 81 251 124 1st, MnJHL Won Bush Cup
Nationals semifinalist
2006–07 40 32 4 2 2 68 259 110 1st, MnJHL Won Bush Cup
Nationals appearance
2007–08 48 43 5 0 0 86 300 125 1st, MnJHL Won Bush Cup
Nationals appearance
2008–09 48 41 7 0 0 82 330 100 2nd, MnJHL Won Bush Cup
Nationals appearance
2009–10 50 41 8 0 1 83 288 138 1st, MnJHL Won Bush Cup
Nationals semifinalist
2010–11 45 34 9 2 70 216 116 2nd, MnJHL Nationals appearance (host)
2011–12 48 35 11 2 72 295 145 2nd, MnJHL Nationals semifinalist
2012–13 50 42 5 3 87 338 128 2nd, MnJHL Lost Division Semifinal
2013–14 46 22 17 7 51 194 181 5th, MnJHL Lost Division Semifinal
2014–15 42 35 6 1 71 272 89 2nd, MnJHL Won Div. Quarterfinals, 2–0 vs. Minnesota Owls
Won Div. Semifinals, 2–0 vs. Hudson Crusaders
Won Crossover Semifinals, 2–0 vs. Illiana Blackbirds
Lost League Finals, 1–2 vs. Dells Ducks
North American 3 Hockey League
2015–16 47 10 36 1 21 123 272 4th of 5, Central
29th of 34, NA3HL
Lost Div. Semifinals, 0–2 vs. North Iowa Bulls
2016–17 47 10 36 1 21 101 250 4th of 5, Central
44th of 48, NA3HL
Lost Div. Semifinals, 0–2 vs. North Iowa Bulls
2017–18 47 6 39 1 13 93 327 5th of 5, Central
39th of 42, NA3HL
Did not qualify
2018–19 47 31 15 1 63 206 134 3rd of 7, West
13th of 36, NA3HL
Lost Div. Semifinals, 1–2 vs. North Iowa Bulls
2019–20 47 37 8 2 76 233 94 1st of 6, Central
5th of 34, NA3HL
Playoffs cancelled
2020–21 40 34 5 1 69 185 63 1st of 6, Central
2nd of 31, NA3HL
Won Div. Semifinals, 2–0 vs. Oregon Tradesmen
Won Div. Finals, 2–1 vs. Peoria Mustangs
2–0–0 in Fraser Cup round-robin Pool B
(W, 4–3 vs. Jr. Brahmas; W, 3–1 vs. Jr. Blazers)
Won Semifinal game, 7–1 vs. Sheridan Hawks
Lost Fraser Cup Championship game, 1–5 vs. North Iowa Bulls
2021–22 47 38 6 3 79 207 81 1st of 6, Central
6th of 34, NA3HL
TBD Div. Semifinals vs. Wausau Cyclones

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "KTTC Night at the Rochester Ice Hawks". KTTC. 23 November 2009.
  2. ^ "Transactions". Hartford Courant. 10 April 2002.
  3. ^ "USA Hockey National Junior Hockey - standings | Pointstreak Sports Technologies".
  4. ^ "USA Hockey National Junior Hockey - standings | Pointstreak Sports Technologies".
  5. ^ "Ice Hawks' move to Rochester pays off in fans and wins". Post-Bulletin. March 22, 2008.
  6. ^ "NA3HL approves expansion membership to Rochester Ice Hawks".
  7. ^ "Junior hockey: Ice Hawks make coaching change". Post-Bulletin. November 16, 2016.
  8. ^ "ROCHESTER ICE HAWKS MAKE COACHING CHANGES". Ice Hawks. December 4, 2017.
  9. ^ "NA3HL team in Rochester, MN announces new ownership group, name". North American Hockey League. April 4, 2018.
  10. ^ "Grizzlies name Mignone as team's first Head Coach and GM". NA3HL. April 23, 2018.
  11. ^ "Blizzard hire Mignone as new Associate Head Coach". NA3HL. July 23, 2019.
  12. ^ "GRIZZLIES NAME ROCHESTER NATIVE CHRIS RATZLOFF NEW HEAD COACH". Rochester Grizzlies. July 23, 2019.

External linksEdit