|Rollins to work 500th ECHL game tonight|
PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL announced on Tuesday that referee Jason Rollins will work his 500th ECHL game tonight in Greenville, S.C. as the Road Warriors host the South Carolina Stingrays.
Rollins joins Joe Ernst, Terry Koharski and Nygel Pelletier as just the fourth referee in the 24-year history of the ECHL to reach the 500-game milestone. He is in his 14th season as an ECHL referee.
Rollins worked his first ECHL game as a referee during the 2000-2001 season in Greensboro, N.C., and worked the 2007 All-Star Game in Boise and has also worked the 2007 and 2008 Kelly Cup Finals.
“On behalf of the ECHL, I would like to congratulate Jason on reaching this milestone,” said ECHL Vice President of Hockey Operations Joe Ernst. “It shows the passion and dedication he has for the ECHL and officiating. Jason has been a good leader and mentor to the younger staff and an official we have counted on through the years.”
“I am honored to hit a mark that only three other well-respected referees have achieved in the ECHL,” Rollins said. “It takes a lot of people to help someone get to 500 regular season games in one League, and close to 800 total in a demanding role.
“I would like to thank my dad, who got me into officiating at an early age and continued to work with me and support me over the years up to his sudden passing in 2006. I would also like to express my gratitude to all of my former supervisors in the ECHL: Andy Van Hellemond, for giving me my first shot in the league; Bryan Graham, for giving me a full-time opportunity after my third season; Gord Broseker, for really taking an interest in my development and who is largely responsible for me getting over the hump to work the ECHL All-Star Game and Kelly Cup Finals in 2007 and 2008. I would also like to thank Bryan Lewis and Rod Pasma for their confidence in me and ultimately making the decision to assign me to the Kelly Cup Finals; Joe Ernst and Brian McKenna for their continued support; and of course, Mr. Pat Kelly, who has been a constant source of motivation since Day 1. Lastly, I would like to thank my wife Sherri and son Maddox for taking such an interest in my ‘hobby,’ and making the sacrifices they have for me to continue doing what I love to do.”
There are 22 former ECHL officials scheduled to work as part of the NHL officiating team in 2011-12 with referees David Banfield, Francis Charron, Ghislain Hebert, Jean Hebert, Marc Joannette, Mike Leggo, Wes McCauley, Dean Morton, Dan O’Rourke, Brian Pochmara, Kevin Pollock, Kyle Rehman, Chris Rooney, Justin St. Pierre, Graham Skilliter and Ian Walsh, and linesmen Steve Barton, Brian Mach, Matt MacPherson, Tim Nowak, Bryan Pancich and Jay Sharrers.