The Las Vegas Wranglers announced today that center Chris Francis, a local product out of Eldorado High School, has re-signed with the team for his third season in a row.
Francis tallied 37 points (9 goals, 28 assists) during the regular season last year, and added another eight points (3 goals, 5 assists) in 11 playoff games. He first suited up for Las Vegas in 2010-11, collecting six goals and two assists in 21 games after playing for the American Hockey League’s Springfield Falcons and the Central Hockey League’s Fort Wayne Komets, new to the ECHL this upcoming season. The 5’9’’, 189-pound center previously spent four seasons (2006-10) with the Portland River Hawks of the Western Hockey League, recording 66 goals and 123 assists in 279 games.
“Chris has developed into a great pro, and his commitment to the game has made me very proud of how far he’s come,” said Wranglers Head Coach and General Manager Ryan Mougenel. “He’s a local product who locals should be excited to see play for his team and his community.”
The 23-year-old Las Vegas native contributes to the development of youth hockey in the desert when he’s not suiting up himself. Since Francis was 17, he’s taught kids the fundamentals of ice hockey by running skill drills for the Las Vegas Jr. Wranglers, and helps run and coach roller hockey camps.
“It’s just so awesome helping the kids, and watching them grow and get so much better year after year,” said Francis. “Knowing that I’ve helped them develop a little bit makes me feel good, and it reminds me of how my parents were so dedicated with me to the sport, taking me to every ice or roller hockey session possible. I look at these parents doing the same thing for their kids and I just really want to help them improve.”
The Wranglers will face the Stockton Thunder in the team’s 2012-13 home opener on Friday, Oct. 19, at 7:05 p.m. A preseason game against the Ontario Reign takes place on Thursday, Oct. 4, at 7:05 p.m., and tickets are available by calling the Wranglers front office at (702) 471-PUCK.