Royals Sign Defenseman Derrick LaPoint
Second Year Pro Was Selected as Reading’s Defensive Player the Year Last Season
July 19, 2012
Reading, PA – The Reading Royals of the ECHL, affiliate of the Washington Capitals of the National Hockey League and the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League, today announced that the team has agreed to terms with defenseman Derrick LaPoint. A second year pro from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, LaPoint (6’2/197) (24) is the fifth player announced as signed by the Royals for the 2012-13 season, joining forwards Trevor Lewis, Ian O’Connor and Yannick Tifu and defenseman Bryant Molle.
Log onto http://youtu.be/EJ0ScW8gTwc for video of Head Coach Larry Courville’s comments regarding the signing of LaPoint.
Last year, LaPoint scored two goals, assisted on eight others (ten points) and picked up sixteen penalty minutes in fifty-one games with the Royals. He also earned four separate call ups to the American Hockey League, where he played a total of five games with the Syracuse Crunch and Peoria Rivermen. Both of LaPoint’s goals last season were ‘first goals’ in games won by the Royals—the first coming in a 6-4 win over the Greenville Road Warriors on December 23 and the second in a 6-5 shootout win over the Trenton Titans on February 23. LaPoint, who was chosen as the Royals’ Defensive Player of the Year, had his rookie season end on a rather abrupt note when he was admitted to a Reading-area hospital for an emergency appendectomy in early March. Although LaPoint recovered relatively quickly from the emergency surgery, he did not return to the Royals’ line-up before the team was eliminated from the ECHL’s Kelly Cup playoffs.
A fourth round pick of the Florida Panthers in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft, LaPoint played collegiately at the University of North Dakota, where he registered forty-four points (7g-37a) and seventy penalty minutes in 149 total college games. During each of his four years at UND, the Fighting Sioux program earned a berth in the NCAA Tournament and twice reached the Frozen Four. A three-time member of the All-WCHA Academic Team, LaPoint was the co-recipient of the Archie Krum Memorial Athletic Scholarship for leadership, high academic standards, and athletic excellence in his senior season and received the Unsung Hero Award for UND’s overall athletic program in his junior year after leading the school’s defensemen in scoring that season with twenty-two points (2g-20a) in forty-three games. Prior to joining the Fighting Sioux, LaPoint was a two-time selection to the Wisconsin High School All-State Team. LaPoint also spent a year with the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL, where he was a First Team All-USHL member and was chosen to the league’s All-Rookie Team.
Season Tickets for the 2012-13 Reading Royals ECHL season are currently available. Call 610-898-7825 for more information or log onto www.royalshockey.com.