BASINGSTOKE Bison have added their first new face to their line-up with the addition of speedy Bracknell Bees forward Grant Rounding, while back-up goalie Connor Standing has left the Herd.
Rounding, who lives in Eastrop, will add even more firepower to what is shaping up to be one of the best offensive units in the league.
The South African-born British forward moved to Basingstoke from Johannesburg when he was eight and started playing ice hockey for the under-10 Bison team before moving to Bracknell four years later.
The 23-year-old remained in Bracknell until the autumn of 2011, when he joined Wightlink Raiders, then in the English National League, where he was a line-mate of Bison fans’ favourite Joe Rand.
His season was cut short on the island due to injury and the following year he suited up for the Bracknell Bees.
Last season, Rounding scored 11 times in a final points tally of 19, but he is best remembered for scoring the winning penalty shot in Bracknell’s first-ever EPL win in Basingstoke against the Bison last November.
Bison player/coach Doug Sheppard is delighted with his latest addition and said: “I think Grant can get 15 goals next season. He is a fast skater who makes things happen and his work ethic makes him a great fit for the team.”
Rounding is pleased to be pulling on a Bison shirt and said: “I feel it is like a home coming for me and I want to be fighting for trophies.
“I am really looking forward to it. I remember scoring the winning penalty and all my family were there. I hope to get the chance to score the winning penalty shot for the Bison this season.”
Basingstoke-born teenage netminder Connor Standing has left the Bison after two seasons after being offered the chance of a starting goalie role with a National League South One side.
This is the league below where the Bison play and it certainly help his development so one day he will be able to return to the Herd as their number one goalie.
Sheppard said: “When Connor (Standing) told me he had the chance to become a starting goalie, I immediately agreed it would be the best move for him at this stage of his career. We wish him well for the future.”