The North Iowa Bulls’ season didn’t end the way they had hoped, but some good did come out of it. The Bulls won their seventh NA3HL West Divison title in 9 years, and the Bulls are sending more players to the next level.
This week the North Iowa Bulls announced that Carter Eha and Sota Isogai have signed tenders with NAHL teams. The NAHL is a Tier II Junior hockey league, a step higher than the NA3HL, which the Bulls compete in.
Carter Eha, Bloomington, Minnesota native, scored 10 goals and 13 assists in just 22 games for the Bulls this season. Eha started the year in Canada before joining the Jamestown Rebels at the end of October. From there he landed in Mason City to join the Bulls’ playoff push.
“Carter came to our team at a time when we really needed to add a physical presence to our lineup. He immediately interjected himself into that physical role and was difficult to play against every night. He opened up time and space for not only himself, but his linemates as well. That extra physicality also led to more offense in our lineup.” – North Iowa Bulls’ Head Coach, Todd Sanden.
Eha has tendered with Minnesota Magicians, and he is no longer eligible to be selected in the league’s annual draft on June 2. The Magicians are based in Richfield, Minnesota.
Video Courtesy of the North Iowa Bulls
Sota Isogai, a Japan native, scored 22 goals and 21 assists in 43 games this season for the North Iowa Bulls. This was the first season that Isogai has played in the United States. Before coming here, he spent a year in Russia and two years with Okanagan in Austria.
“Sota is a super-dynamic young player. Had (the team) not been so old this year, he would have been much higher in our lineup consistently. He was at the top of our lineup at the end of the season, and you like to see your young players elevate (their game) throughout the season. It didn’t matter who we played him with, he was productive and he’s going to be a good player for Fairbanks to mold. He still has growth left in his game.”– North Iowa Bulls’ Head Coach, Todd Sanden.
Isogai’s tender was signed with the Fairbanks Ice Dogs – in Fairbanks, Alaska. This means that his NAHL playing rights now belong to Fairbanks, and he cannot be selected in the NAHL Draft this June. The Ice Dogs were a runaway Midwest Division championship. As of the cancellation of the NAHL’s remaining schedule on Tuesday, Fairbanks was the only team in the division to clinch a Robertson Cup playoff berth.
The North Iowa Bulls say that “Eha and Isogai are the fifth and sixth North Iowa Bulls players to sign NAHL tenders this season. Five Bulls players have signed tenders with NAHL teams in the month of March alone. Almost 50 North Iowa Bulls players have appeared for NAHL teams after suiting up for the Bulls, including eight who have reached the NCAA Division I level”.
Video Courtesy – North Iowa Bulls
Head Shot Photo Credit – North Iowa Bulls
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