By Kevin Scott
GREAT FALLS, Mont., August 8, 2014 — Great Falls Americans Junior A forward Brady Christiaens will continue his education and his playing career at an NCAA Division III Colorado school after playing two seasons of junior hockey in Montana.
Christiaens will attend the University of Northern Colorado located in Greeley, Colorado this fall and play club ice hockey for the Bears that compete in the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA).The Bears finished their 2013-14 campaign with a 22-9-2 record and a fourth place finish in the Pacific Region.
The 6’1” forward from Great Falls, Montana collected 14 goals and dished out 35 assists in 43 games this year. He registered two goals and two assists in seven playoff games. Great Falls, led by head coach Jeff Heimel, finished with a 39-13-3 record including a 22-4 mark at the Great Falls Ice Plex.
Christiaens had his best performances this past season against the Glacier Nationals and Bozeman Ice Dogs as he accumulated two goals and an assist in each of the three road league victories.
“Making the playoffs this year (in his second full season with the team) and winning the first round semifinal series over Gillette (Wild),” said the Northern Colorado signee referring to his accomplishments with the team during the 2013-14 season.
“It’s always exciting to see a local player be as successful as Brady has,” said Heimel. “It was a pleasure coaching him last season. We wish him the best of luck in his future college endeavors and we know that he will do great things.”
Brady mentioned that coach Heimel was “a great leader for the team and I really enjoyed the way he taught the game and the way he helped us out” when talking about the Americans mentor, who will be entering his third season with the franchise this upcoming season.
Christiaens stated that playing at the Junior level will help definitely him transition to the college game where the players are more advanced and play at a higher and faster pace.
He is looking forward to the opportunity to play at the college level and get his degree in a business-related field possibly in Business Administration.
“The fans have been great ever since I played on the local high school team and my first year on the Junior A squad and it really showed how many fans really care about hockey in Great Falls and they really showed their support,” said the outgoing junior hockey player.
Christiaens, a 2011 graduate of C.M. Russell High School, was one of the first signees of the 2011-12 expansion Americans team in Great Falls. Before playing for the Junior A team, he played hockey with the Great Falls Americans U-18 high school team.
Click here to view his season statistics from the Americans.