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Published April 22, 2011, 08:44 PM

Hextall Leaves UND, Signs with Coyotes

After three seasons at UND, Hextall signs entry-level contract with NHL's Phoenix Coyotes.

GRAND FORKS, N.D. – North Dakota junior forward Brett Hextall has signed an entry level contract with the Phoenix Coyotes, the National Hockey League club announced today, and will forgo his senior season with the Fighting Sioux.

Phoenix selected Hextall in the sixth round (159th overall) of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. The Coyotes are coached by former Sioux standout Dave Tippett, the 2009-10 NHL Coach of the Year.

Hextall, a native of Manhattan Beach, Calif., had 13 goals and 16 assists for a career-high 29 points in 39 games last season. The 5-foot-11, 195-pound Hextall collected six power-play goals and one shorthanded tally, and helped lead the Sioux to an NCAA Frozen Four berth, as well as Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) regular season and playoff championships.

In 115 career games at UND, Hextall amassed 39 goals and 42 assists for 81 points, along with 242 career penalty minutes. Nineteen of Hextall’s 39 career goals came on the power-play.

Hextall, a two-time WCHA All-Academic selection, comes from a family of significant NHL bloodlines. His father, Ron, played 13 seasons in the NHL with Philadelphia, Quebec and the New York Islanders, and is currently the assistant general manager of the Los Angeles Kings. His great uncle, Dennis Hextall, lettered in hockey at UND from 1964-66 and went on to enjoy a 14-year NHL career. Additionally, his grandfather, Bryan Hextall, Jr., spent nine seasons in the NHL with the New York Rangers, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Detroit and Minnesota , while his great grandfather, Bryan Hextall, Sr., played 11 seasons with the New York Rangers.

Hextall is the fifth Sioux to sign a professional contract since the end of the 2010-11 season. Seniors Brent Davidson (Boras HC, Sweden), Matt Frattin (Toronto Maple Leafs), Chay Genoway (Minnesota Wild) and Brad Malone (Colorado Avalanche) each signed earlier this month.

Hextall is the first Sioux to sign a professional contract prior to his senior year since Taylor Chorney (Edmonton Oilers) and T.J. Oshie (St. Louis Blues) departed following the 2007-08 season.