“Vance will be a versatile player for us as he can play forward and defense,” said SFU Head Coach Mark Coletta. “He put up some pretty good point totals during his last year of junior hockey and then was moved to defense when he got to university.”
Bridgman, who is listed at 6’1” and 195-pounds, had two goals and four assists in 18 games with SUNY-Canton in 2013-14. He was a two-sport athlete at North Pole High School in Alaska, competing in hockey and baseball.
“I’m excited to come to SFU because of the challenge in the classroom and on the ice. Joining a program that has proven to be a winner is also something I’m really looking forward to being apart of,” said Bridgman.
Bridgman started his junior hockey career in 2010-11 with the Southern Oregon Spartans of the Tier III Northern Pacific Hockey League, contributing 50 goals and 43 assists. He lead the league in goals and was named a NORPAC First Team All-Star. Bridgman also added eight goals and three assists in seven playoff games with the Spartans. He joined the Idaho Junior Steelheads of the Western States Hockey League for 2011-12 and posted 18 goals along with 29 assists in 42 games. He had three goals and eight assists in nine playoff games with the Steelheads as they won the WSHL Championship. In August 2012, he committed to attend SUNY-Canton and played 14 games as a freshman in 2012-13, totaling two goals and three assists.
“As for where Vance fits in our lineup, we’ll have to see how training camp plays out, but I see him giving us some added size and offense up front,” continued Coletta.
Bridgman is the first player with NCAA experience to commit to SFU for the upcoming season, but he joins Jared Eng, Nick Sandor, and Aaron Enns on the Clan roster as players who have played US college hockey.
“I’m not a very flashy player, but I like to be in front of the net and get in the goalie’s vision to get to job done. I’m also responsible in the defensive zone and love killing penalties,” he explains. “In my first year at SFU, I’d like to help continue the program’s winning tradition. I plan on finding out where I fit in as soon as possible and doing whatever I can to help the team be successful.”
Bridgman joins goaltenders Jordan Liem and Dominic Stadnyk, defensemen Mathew Berry-Lamontagna and Robby Jang, and forwards Adam Callegari, Tyler Basham and Matthew Luongo as eight recruits thus far in what is expected to be a very strong recruiting class for the 2014-15 season for SFU.