Beast add three

BRAMPTON, Ontario – The Brampton Beast, ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Montreal Canadiens and the American Hockey League’s St. John’s IceCaps, announced the signing of defenseman Michael Vernace and forwards Luke Pither and Jamie Wise.

Vernace, 29, is a Toronto native who spent his entire Ontario Hockey League career playing for the Brmapton Battalion from 2003-06. He compiled impressive statistics for a blueliner, notching 124 points (23g-101a) in 138 games. In 2005-06, he recorded 62 assists, the most of all defensemen in the OHL that season. His 72 points in 2005-06 is the most ever recorded by a Battalion defenseman. Vernace has immense professional experience and has suited up for 22 NHL games with the Tampa Bay Lightning and Colorado Avalanche. He spent the majority of his career in the American Hockey League and suited up for 438 career games for seven different AHL clubs.

Pither, an Oshawa, Ontario native, had a fantastic four-year Ontario Hockey League career, culminating with an impressive 36-goal, 94-point campaign with the Barrie Colts in 2009-10. As a professional, Pither has experience in North America and overseas and has played in the American Hockey League (Adirondack Phantoms and Charlotte Checkers), the ECHL (Trenton Titans and Wheeling Nailers) as well as in the SM-liiga in Finland and in Austria.

Wise hails from Stouffville, Ontario and attended Beast training camp earlier this season. He finished his junior career in 2011-12, recording 48 points (31g-17a) with the Majors and played in the 2011 Memorial Cup in Mississauga. He recorded 21 goals in 26 games for the Ryerson Rams in the CIS in 2013-14 and was named to the CIS (OUA West) First All-Star Team.