Flyers sign forward Brett Engelhardt to ATO

By Al Alven

The Philadelphia Flyers have signed center/right wing Brett Engelhardt to an amateur tryout contract, the team announced last night.

The undrafted 23-year-old is expected to see some action down the stretch this season with the Philadelphia Phantoms of the American Hockey League (AHL). He will be completing work on his Finance degree at Michigan Tech University while playing.

Engelhardt starred for four seasons with the Huskies. His collegiate career ended earlier this month, when the team was eliminated in the first round of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) playoffs by North Dakota.

The 6’2″, 210 lb. forward tallied 25 points (12 goals, 13 assists) and 68 PIMs in 38 games this season.

For his NCAA career, the Sheboygan, Wisconsin native totaled 105 points (51 goals, 54 assists) and 248 PIMs in 149 games. He enjoyed a career year as a sophomore in 2001-02, leading the Huskies in points (32) and goals (16) en route to earning team MVP and WCHA Second All-Star Team honors.

Prior to enrolling at Michigan Tech, Engelhardt played two seasons in the United States Hockey League (USHL) with the Green Bay Gamblers, compiling 81 points (36 goals, 45 assists) and 243 PIMs in 112 total games.

The signing of Engelhardt comes two days after the Flyers inked Providence College defenseman Stephen Wood to a similar ATO contract.

These acquisitions continue the Flyers’ recent trend of signing undrafted collegiate players. This past summer, the organization inked defensemen Randy Jones (Clarkson University), Freddy Meyer (Boston University) and James Laux (Colorado College), and forward Nick Deschenes (Yale University) to entry-level deals.

Jones and Meyer became immediate contributors on the Phantoms’ blueline, and have both appeared in games with the Flyers this season. Laux and Deschenes have battled injuries and split time between the Phantoms and Trenton Titans (ECHL) as professional rookies.