Former Lismore man Matt Ezzy has been signed by the Texas Brahmas to compete in the Central Hockey League in the United States.
The Brahmas’ website reports that Ezzy, 24, is one of three prospects they have signed at the conclusion of the second annual tryout camp.
“Ezzy grew up in Lismore, a city of 30,000 in the northern part of New South Wales,” the Brahmas Robert Keith wrote.
“The town had no hockey arena but it did have a roller rink.
“He began playing hockey on wheels and became a goalie for the Australian under-16 roller hockey team.
At 16, Ezzy entered men’s AAA ice hockey with the Gold Coast Grizzlys, playing in a five-team league.
“He gained international experience, playing for the Australian youth team in South Korea at the Asia-Pacific championships, where he was voted best goalie.
“In South Korea, he inquired about a goalie school and was directed to one in Ottawa.
“From there, he won a spot on the Tier 2 junior A Smiths Falls team in Eastern Ontario.
“Ezzy next played for the London Nationals whom he took to the Western Junior B Hockey League championship round in 2003.
“Ezzy played the last three seasons with the Newcastle North Stars in the Australian Ice Hockey League (AIHL).
“In 2006, the North Stars defeated the Adelaide Avalanche 3-0 to win the Goodall Cup in the AIHL Championship game.
“Ezzy stopped all 23 shots he saw.
“First awarded in 1910, the Goodall Cup is hockey’s second-oldest prize still in existence. Only the NHL’s Stanley Cup is older.
“After losing in the Final in the 2007 season, Ezzy and the North Stars defeated the Western Sydney Ice Dogs 4-1 to win another Goodall Cup, the teams’ fourth in six years.”
The six-foot-three, 210-pound Ezzy backstopped the Australian Men’s Ice Hockey Team, the Mighty Roos, who went undefeated in the 2008 International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) World Division II Championships held in Newcastle, New South Wales.
“He was awarded ‘Best Goalie of Tournament’ for his feat in winning all four games played and allowing only four goals by him throughout the event.”
Ezzy said he sold his car to make the trip to the US, and that he was ecstatic about being picked up by the Brahmas.
“I’m really looking forward to the challenge of the main camp and seeing what I can do against the real deal guys, so to speak,” he said.
The Brahmas’ opponents in the Central Hockey League include the Amarillo Gorillas, Arizona Sundogs, Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs, Colorado Eagles, Corpus Christi IceRays, Laredo Bucks, Mississippi Riverkings, New Mexico Scorpions, Odessa Jackalopes, Oklahoma City Blazers, Rapid City Rush, Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees, Rocky Mountain Rage, Tulsa Oilers and the