TOPEKA, Kan. – The Topeka RoadRunners announced this week the signing of two more players from the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies Tier I Elite Hockey League to North American Hockey League tender contracts for the 2016-17 season.
Forward Nick Granowicz, from Macomb, Mich., and defenseman Brenden Rons, from Farmington Hills, Mich., will compete for positions with the RoadRunners next season.
Granowicz, a 1998-born center/right wing, is in his second season with the Oakland Grizzlies program. Last season Granowicz played for the U16 squad and had 7 goals and 10 assists in 31 games. This season, under Oakland coach Mike Peruzzi, Granowizc has already surpassed those numbers for the U18 team and currently stands at 9 goals and 11 assists in 29 games.
“Nick and Brenden have progressed rapidly over the past two seasons, and to the point where our staff believes they will come in to Topeka and compete for a position on our team," said Topeka Head Coach Josh Kamrass. "Coach Peruzzi and his staff do a tremendous job in developing young talent. Both Nick and Brenden have strong competition levels and both have tremendous potential.”
Prior to his stint with the Grizzlies, the 5-11, 161-pound Granowicz played two seasons with the Detroit Falcons U16 and U18 programs after spending the 2012-13 season with the Belle Tire Bantam Major AAA program.
“Nick is a versatile forward that skates well and is a very smart player," said Tim Christian, Director of Scouting for the RoadRunners. "He has very good offensive instincts but can play an all-around game as well. Nick’s work ethic is what we expect from a Roadrunner and will be a perfect fit for our organization.”
Rons, a 6-5, 170-pound left-shot defenseman, is in his second season with Peruzzi's U18 team. The 1998-born blueliner spent the 2013-14 season with the Grizzlies U16 season after coming out of the Victory Honda Bantam Major AAA program.
"Brenden is a player that has recently switched positions and has flourished back on defense," said Christian. "His size and skating ability are his biggest attributes and as he continues to learn a new position, we feel he has the potential to be a big time player. We are excited in the upside that Brenden will bring to Topeka.