This week, the Orlando Solar Bears announced the signings of forward Ryan Cox and defenseman Chris Perna.
During the 2022-23 season, Ryan Cox appeared in 12 games with the Toledo Walleye, gaining 11 points (5g-6a). Cox is a forward from St. Albert, Alberta, Canada, standing at 5-foot-11. Last season with the Walleye, Cox scored three goals and three assists for six points in three games. Like our other recently signed Solar Bear, Chris Harpur, Ryan Cox played collegiately at Niagara University, where he played 152 NCAA games in five seasons, scoring 69 points (35g-34a). During the week of March 20 through March 26, Cox was named Inglasco’s ECHL Player of the Week. The Orlando Solar Bears acquired Ryan Cox in a future considerations trade with the Toledo Walleye, completing the December 6, 2022 deal for Andrew Sturtz.
Blueliner Chris Perna has also signed an ECHL Standard Player Contract for the 2023-24 season. Perna played 54 regular season games last year for the Tulsa Oilers, scoring eight assists. In those 54 games, Perna was sent to the penalty box for 20 minutes. The Orlando Solar Bears acquired Chris Perna in the future considerations trade to complete the deal with the Tulsa Oilers getting Dante Sherriff on December 6, 2022. The 25-year-old from New York wore the “A” (alternate captain) on his jersey his senior year at SUNY Geneseo, where he played college hockey. Perna played 81 college hockey games from 2018 through 2022, scoring 15 goals and 47 assists.
The Orlando Solar Bears now have quite a few forwards on their list and only two defensemen, Chris Harpur and Chris Perna, coming from Niagara University. With hockey season rapidly approaching, fans are sure to see a number of signings coming in the next few weeks.