San Francisco Bulls Pick Up UNB Goaltender Travis Fullerton on ATO Contract
Early last week, the San Francisco Bulls signed University of New Brunswick goaltender Travis Fullerton to back up Taylor Nelson the remainder of the year on an Amateur Try Out contract. The announcement was officially made Friday.
"We've been looking at him for some time," said head coach Pat Curcio.
Fullerton comes to the Bulls with both collegiate and junior hockey experience.
In 2004, the now 25-year-old was drafted in the 14th round of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League by the Lewiston Maineiacs. He had previously played for the Maritime Junior A Hockey League Moncton Gagnon Beavers. Fullerton spent two seasons in Lewiston before he was kicked off the Maineiacs after an alleged drunk driving incident on Aug. 21, 2006.
There, he backed up netminder Jonathan Bernier, who currently plays for the Los Angeles Kings.
According to the police report, Fullerton was pulled over by Lewiston Police near the 1100 block of Libson Street in Lewiston. Fullerton registered a .16 blood alcohol content and was charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol. A $500 bail was posted and on Oct. 1, 2006 was back in court for a hearing.
By noon the next day, Coach Clem Jodoin said he released Fullerton from the team after violating team ethics.
The public referred to Fullerton as a "menace." For the 2006-07 season, Fullerton rejoined Moncton Gagnon, near his hometown of Riverview, New Brunswick, before he was traded to the Saint John Sea Dogs of the QMJHL midway through the season.
He totaled 58 games in net for the Beavers between 2004 and 2006, averaging a .914 save percentage and allowing an average of 2.44 goals against per game. With Lewiston during 2004 to 2006, Fullerton played 19 games total with a .8815 average save percentage in this two seasons and 4.23 goals against average.
Midway through the 2006 season, Fullerton then got time with Saint John, where he had a .889 career save percentage and a 3.615 goal against average in his two years as a Sea Dog.
Saint John acquired Fullerton after trading Charles Bergeron to the Acadie-Bathurst Titan for a fourth-round draft pick in 2007. Coach Jacques Beaulieu then traded that pick to the Lewiston Maineiacs for the then-19-year-old goaltender.
By autumn of 2008, Fullerton made his way to UNB, where he averaged a five-year .908 save percentage and 1.878 goal against average a game in 74 games played. With UNB, he won three Canadian Interuniversity Sport national championships in 2009, 2011 and last weekend. He started and finished in two of the three title games.
In 2011, Fullerton missed half the season after an appendectomy but bounced back. According to statistics from UNB, in that season with only 13 games played, Fullerton averaged a 1.67 goal against average during regular season and 1.82 goal against average in the six postseason games.
Career highlights include three-time Canadian Interuniversity Sport and Atlantic University Sport champions, 2009-2010 CIS and AUS second all-star team and 2010-2011 CIS all-tournament team.
Fullerton suited up for his first game with the Bulls Friday night in a 2-1 loss to the Stockton Thunder.
The San Francisco Bulls are the ECHL affiliate to the San Jose Sharks.
Britney Milazzo is a Contributor for Bleacher Report. Unless otherwise noted, all quotes were obtained firsthand. Follow her on Twitter @bmilazz.
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