Throughout the month of August (and late July), BismarckBobcats.com will be taking a one-by-one look at the players on the Bobcats’ Training Camp Roster. Today’s installment covers the Bobcats’ top-scoring rookie in 2011-12, Patrick Moore.
Name: Patrick Moore
Hometown: Grand Rapids, MN
2011-12 Team: Bismarck Bobcats
2011-12 Stats: 18 G, 28 A, 46 PTS, +24, 16 PIM
Childhood NHL Idol: Peter Forsberg
Favorite TV Show: Workaholics
Highlight of 2011-12: “Going 4-0 on the road in the playoffs and clinching the Division Finals in front of Austin’s fans”
Stepping In, Stepping Up
Touted highly out of Grand Rapids High School in Minnesota, where he racked up 98 points in two years with the Thunderhawks, the 2011-12 season did not start exactly how Patrick Moore might have envisioned.
Through the first week of the campaign, Moore found himself on the fourth line as the Bobcats struggled to a 2-2-0 finish at the Combat NAHL Showcase in Blaine, Minn., where the rookie did not register a point.
“Even though I wasn’t expecting to come in and be a guy on the top two lines on a team full of veterans, it was a little frustrating to start out as a fourth liner,” recalled Moore. “But I didn’t get down about it and waited for my chance.”
That chance took exactly two days to arrive, as the Bobcats were stunned when high-scoring forward Nikolaj Rosenthal left the team to play professional hockey in his native Denmark shortly after the Showcase. After careful deliberation, Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie promoted Moore to replace Rosenthal as a winger on the Cats’ second line with Castan Sommer and Shane Omdahl.
Moore responded to his promotion by promptly scoring three goals and adding an assist as the Bobcats swept their home-opening weekend from Aberdeen and Alexandria, sparking a seven-game point streak.
The former Thunderhawk never looked back, going on to tally 18 goals and 28 assists in 51 games—landing him in the top-five league-wide among rookies in both points and points per game.
“We knew Patrick was talented when he signed a tender agreement with us out of Grand Rapids, but sometimes it’s hard to know how a player will react when you put him in a pressure situation or a pressure role,” explained Sedevie. “But we threw Patty on that line with Shane and Castan, he took off and our offense never missed a beat despite a huge loss.”
Growing up on Minnesota’s Iron Range in puck-crazy Grand Rapids, hockey has always been a way of life for Moore.
“Hockey is everything in ‘GR’,” Moore beamed about his home town, which boasts three state high school hockey titles in Minnesota, “you grow up going to high school games, looking up to those guys and seeing 3,000 people in the stands every night, it’s easy to see how much people care about hockey there.”
That connection that Thunderhawks fans have to their stars doesn’t stop when the players graduate, as Moore eventually found out.
“When you go on and play juniors and beyond, it actually makes you a big deal around town because your success really makes the town proud.”
The seed for Moore’s tenure as a Bobcat were actually planted a couple years before the 1992-born forward came to Bismarck/Mandan, when defenseman and fellow Grand Rapids native Sam Rendle arrived on the scene, fresh off his senior season at GRHS for the 2009-10 campaign.
Rendle shook off a slow start at the Showcase—not unlike Moore—and went on to tally 47 points, an NAHL high for defensemen, on the way to the Bobcats’ first-ever Robertson Cup.
That caliber of season became the footsteps in which Moore wanted to follow.
“Sammy was in the same boat as I was coming out of high school, looking to prove himself at that next level, so he came to Bismarck,” noted Moore. “And he puts up a great year and gets a scholarship to a school so close to our hometown in Bemidji State… it’s a great example to set.
“And Sam told me that the facilities were nice and the people were nice and the city was nice, so it became an easy decision to sign a tender with the Bobcats.”
Eventually, Moore literally filled Rendle’s shoes with the Bobcats: using a pair of borrowed skates from the former Bobcat blueliner to make the team at 2011 Main Camp. He continued to use Rendle’s signature white skates for the early stretches of the 2011-12 season, including all seven games of his early-season point streak.
To a man, the Bobcats returning from the 2011-12 squad have a bad taste in their mouth at the way the season ended, with a 1-2 record at the Robertson Cup Tournament. Moore is no different in this sentiment.
“It’s fueled me all summer. Your goal isn’t to get to Nationals, it’s to win Nationals,” he stressed. “So my attitude has been to stay in top shape and do everything I can to help the team, including being more physical and laying some more hits out there.”
Moore’s new commitment to the physical side of the game was evident from the get-go at 2012 Main Camp, as he leveled an opposing defender in open ice on his very first shift of the camp and played strong in the corners on his way to a goal and five assists at the three-day tryout.
He has also been training hard with Rendle and Joe Stejskal of the AHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs over the summer to stay in peak physical condition.
“It’s pretty much 45 minutes of hell for three days a week,” said Moore with a laugh, “but it’s been keeping me in shape because we’ve been going pretty hard.
“We also just got ice in during July in Grand Rapids, so I’ve been on the ice almost every day, getting ready for the puck to drop against Jamestown [on September 12].”
Stay tuned to BismarckBobcats.com over the next month as we take you in-depth with every player on the Training Camp Roster in preparation for the 2012-13 season. This week, we will also feature Shane Omdahl, Jeremy O’Keefe and Dan Kovar.