“I give a ton of credit to the city of Oswego with the relocation of the Stampede. Oswego mayor Billy Barlow was very receptive in bringing junior hockey back to Oswego and worked very hard to make it happen,” stated Mike Beavis GM and Head Coach of the Stampede. The City of Oswego and the Stampede worked on several key points over the past few months to complete the transition for the move.
The last junior team to play out of Oswego was the Oswego Admirals (OJPHL) in 2006-07 in which Beavis was on staff. “The Fort was an exciting place to play and we had several guy’s that were on that team that went on to play in the NCAA and a few had some minor pro careers as well," added Beavis.
The move to Oswego will certainly benefit the Stampede players. Billet situations are often tough for junior programs but with the support that the community has for hockey in the Oswego area things should be much easier. Other advantages of the move will be the availability of part time jobs for players, proximity of the rink, and other activities. “The past few seasons were great at Morrisville and we had a great relationship with the college and its staff but we had to find a way to help our players and be in a place where we could become a complete program," added Beavis.
The Stampede will join Oswego Youth Hockey and the Oswego BUCS High School Boys and Girls programs at the Fort. “We are looking forward to working with the Youth and High School groups and forming a relationship with them that could potentially lead to promoting their players onto higher levels in the future," Beavis said.
Along with the Move, the Stampede has announced a name and color change going forward. “After meeting with the mayor, we were given the impression that he would like us to take on the Oswego name when we completed the deal to move to our new venue. It didn’t take long for us to decide on a complete change to let our new neighbors know that we were committed to Oswego long term and the we opted to replace the Syracuse Stampede with the Oswego Stampede and adjust our colors to support the existing Oswego groups in Oswego," Beavis states.
The Stampede will don University of Maine colors. The Stampede and the City of Oswego are all in agreement that this move to bring junior hockey back to the area will be a great venture to everyone involved. With Oswego State College, a couple miles up the road and their NCAA D-3 program as well as the ACHA D-1 team the Stampede should get players from around the NA3HL some very good looks by college coaches in the future.
“I would personally like to thank everyone involved in the relocation process including the NA3HL governing body and membership for supporting the move 100%, The City of Oswego and we would also like to thank Morrisville State College for the past three years with them," said Beavis.
The Stampede will hold a press conference in the near future pertaining to the program and the working relationship they will be having with the City of Oswego. The Stampede will open training Camp at the “Fort” on Tuesday September 5th for the 2017-18 season. The Stampede are proud members of the NA3HL and USA hockey. For more details on the Stampede please visit their website at www.oswegostampede.com.