Duluth, GA. – The Gladiators add a couple of big pieces to the roster. Defenseman Jake Flegel weighs in at 6’4” (193cm) 216 pounds (98kg), while Thomas Frazee matches him in height at 6’4” (193cm) and a 193 pounds (92kg). Jake returns from last year’s squad, while Frazee comes back after playing for the Gladiators during the 2017-18 season.
Jake Flegel, the 27-years-old defenseman is from Ajax in Ontario, Canada. Jake played for Adrian College (MI), a Division III school where he spent two years. During his time there he had two goals, eight assists, for 10 points in 38 career games for the Bulldogs and will feel right at home here, in University of Georgia territory.
Flegel joined the professional ranks in the 2015-16 season. He began his career in the Southern Professional Hockey League playing for Knoxville during the first three years of his career. In those three seasons with the Ice Bears he scored four goals, had 34 assists, for 38 points in 115 games. After the season was over that final year, he extended his playing time by moving up to the ECHL, where he split time between the Brampton Beast and the Cincinnati Cyclones.
“Definitely excited to be back! We have a lot of players returning that know our coach’s structure and systems, so we will be comfortable with them and have good leadership. I expect us to have a great start. We have more of a veteran team this year, so there will be more consistency on the ice. We’re in good standing to do the right things and make a good playoff push to win it all,” said the defenseman.
Last season after just one game in the SPHL with the Peoria Riverman, he came back to the ECHL to join the Atlanta Gladiators. With the Glads he suited up for 35 games, scoring three goals, added three assists, for six points. Now he’s back on D for Atlanta and will be a part of 2019-20 squad when the season opens.
Head Coach Jeff Pyle said on the signing of Flegel, “He’s a big, hard-nosed defenseman that was a big part of our success and played most of the year against everyone’s first line and was a shutdown guy. Jake’s a penalty killer that accepted his role and did anything it would take to win. He was our highest plus player at +10 and when he got points, they were important ones that decided the outcome of games. A pressure player, great locker room guy and a great teammate.
Thomas Frazee, a 29-years-old forward from Vancouver in British Columbia, played for Lakehead University in Canada. Thomas first entered the ECHL the same year he began school in 2011-12, playing 13 games for the Bakersfield Condors. After two years of college hockey, he went back to junior hockey playing in the CHL and scored 24 goals, had 23 assists, totaling 47 points in 60 games, helping the Quad City Mallards to the playoffs.
Frazee headed back to the ECHL for the 2014-15 season, where he split time between three teams. That season he played for Fort Wayne, Greensville and Evansville, as well as making an appearance in the AHL for the Charlotte Checkers. Between the four teams that season, he tallied 18 goals, 24 assists for 89 points in 72 games.
“I’m very grateful for the opportunity to come back and play for the Gladiators. It was great to see how well the team turned things around in the second half last season, and I can’t wait to get back and push for a long and successful playoff run. A few years back I didn’t know if I wanted to keep playing, and guys like Andy Brandt and Derek Nesbitt really helped me enjoy the game again. The fans, city and organization are all first class and deserve a winning hockey team that will bring it every night. Jeff’s passion in building a winning team is very clear and Glads fans should be fired up about this year. GO GLADS!”, said the returning Forward Frazee.
He then joined the Gladiators for the next three years, putting together back-to-back solid seasons in his first two years. In 2015-16, Thomas had 16 goals, 31 assists for 47 points in 71 games. The following year he scored a career high 19 goals, with 20 assists, totaling 39 points in 60 games and even went on loan to the AHL with the San Antonio Rampage for the end of their season. Frazee rejoined the Glads for the 2017-2018 season, putting up 15 points in 12 games on five goals and 10 assists. He also split time that season with two other teams, in the Norfolk Admirals and Allen Americans. That year he was also named the Player-of-the-Week for the second time in his career. Last season he played in the ECHL for the fifth consecutive season and in 16 games with the Allen Americans put in 2 goals and had 4 assists.
“Frazee is a dynamic player that will help us enormously on the offensive side. When he gets on a hot streak he is as good a scorer as there is in the ECHL. He adds another big body to our team that can play the physical game as well. If I find the right guys to play him with and use him in the right spots, Frazee has the potential to have a huge year. With the new forwards we have coming in, we will have three good lines. He is extremely excited to be back, and we are excited to have him here,” said Coach Pyle