The North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) has announced that it has approved the transfer of membership, purchase and relocation of the Chicago Jr. Bulldogs by the REB Enterprise, LLC, ownership group.
The team will be relocated from Romeoville, Illinois to Wausau, Wisconsin for the 2017-18 season and will henceforth be known as the Wausau RiverWolves. The Wausau RiverWolves will assume the playing rights to those players that were rostered with the Chicago Jr. Bulldogs during the 2016-17 season.
The REB Enterprise, LLC, ownership group consists of Steve Black and Duncan Woodhull. Black, along with son Bryant Black, also owns the NA3HL’s New Ulm Steel. The Wausau RiverWolves have already begun operations and will play out of Marathon County Arena in Wausau.
The RiverWolves have also announced that Tim Brownell has also been named the new head coach of the team.
“I want to first thank Dan Fiorenza, Bob Stephens and Marathon County for helping make this possible. They worked diligently on making this happen and immediately made us feel like a partner moving forward. We are excited to become a part of the Wausau community, create opportunities for the young men coming to be a part of the RiverWolves and create something that Wausau and everyone involved can be proud of,” said Steve Black.
“We want to immediately become a part of the Wausau community. We feel it is so important to surround ourselves with great players with character, which also includes a great support staff. We feel we have a group with experience to help lead the RiverWolves and that we have hired an outstanding coach in Tim Brownell to help echo the beliefs that we want to instill. His hard work, determination and professionalism will help set the organization for early success and create a lasting impression for everyone involved,” said Duncan Woodhull.
Brownell has spent the past two seasons as the assistant coach for the NA3HL’s Gillette Wild. Brownell started his coaching career in Laramie, Wyoming where he was the Head Coach for the Laramie Outlaw Midget program. In conjunction with coaching the Wild, he also served as the Wyoming Amateur Hockey Association Director of Player Development. Prior to coaching, Brownell played four years of college hockey for Weber State University and earned his degree in Public Relations and Advertising. After graduating from college, he played minor professional hockey for the Toledo Walleye and the August RiverHawks.
“I am very excited to be the first head coach for the Wausau RiverWolves. After speaking with Bryant, Duncan and Steve for the last week and seeing how successful New Ulm has been the last couple of seasons, I knew this was the perfect opportunity to start my head-coaching career. I am looking forward to working with them and creating a winning tradition from day one. My goal for next year is to build a successful environment that gives the players a chance to grow, whether it is on the ice or in the community. At the end of the day, college is the next step for all the players and I want to make sure they are ready to succeed at that level as well,” said Brownell. “I want to thank Brendon Hodge and the entire Gillette Wild organization, for everything they have done for me the last two years. Coach Hodge has taught me so much more about the game and I am going to bring many of the same ideals to Wausau.”
“We are very excited to have been able to partner with the group to bring a Junior Hockey team to Wausau,” said Dan Fiorenza of Wausau/Marathon County Parks, Recreation, Forestry. “We know we have a great community, this will only add to our quality of life in Marathon County.”