Climie inks deal with Dallas Stars
Thursday, March 20, 2008
BEMIDJI, Minn. - Former Bemidji State University goaltender Matt Climie (Leduc, Alberta) has signed a one-year professional hockey contract with the Dallas Stars. He will complete the 2007-08 season with the Iowa Stars, Dallas' primary development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). Complete terms of the agreement were not announced by the organization.

Climie will take the final 12 games of the regular season to get acclimated to the league, level of play and the organization on an amateur tryout agreement and will begin to fulfill his one-year contract within the Dallas system next fall.

"This is a huge step for my career," commented Climie. "Now I'm a professional hockey player, it's my job."

Climie capped his career at BSU at the College Hockey America Tournament last week in Niagara Falls, N.Y.

During his four years in the Green and White, he piled up an overall record of 45-30-11 and helped lead BSU to CHA regular-season championships in 2004-05 and 2007-08 as well as backstopping the University to back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Division I Hockey Tournament (2005, 2006).

The two-time All-CHA pick leaves Bemidji State after climbing to second all-time in save percentage (.909) and in goals against average (2.45). He owns the Beavers' single-season record for shutouts (5) and is atop the career shutouts list (12). His 45 victories in net stand as a BSU Division I-era standard. In the 52-year history of the BSU men's hockey program, only three players have logged more time between the pipes than Climie (5,427) while his 2,201 saves seat him sixth on the school's all-time list.

Climie capped the 2007-08 campaign with a 2.16 goals against average, a .913 save percentage, an overall record of 14-8-3. In addition to backstopping a defense that led the league (1.95) and ranked ninth in all of NCAA Division I in goals allowed per game, he was also a vital cog to a Bemidji State penalty-kill unit that nearly set a new BSU (.863) standards for efficiency and all-time in CHA play (.918).

In league play, the senior posted a CHA-best 1.78 goals against average and .750 winning percentage (12-3-3) while finishing second in save percentage with a .927 and 1111:49 logged between the pipes.

An eight-time CHA Player of the Week during his career and INCH National Player of the Week (1/15/08), Climie was a three-time Academic All-CHA selection, became the first sophomore to be named CHA Preseason Player of the Year prior to the 2005-06 campaign, earned a spot on the 2004-05 CHA All-Rookie team and was named as the 2005 CHA Tournament Most Valuable Player.

"There is no way I would have been able to sign a professional contract without my time at Bemidji State," added Climie. "Bemidji gave me the opportunity to get that first break."

"My four years at Bemidji State were great. They were everything and more than I thought they would be," said Climie. "We had a lot of success as a hockey team, I met great people and made some friendships that I'll have the for the rest of my life." He added, "I have learned and developed so much as a person and that has prepared me to take the next step."

"It's every kid's dream to be a professional athlete," commented BSU head coach Tom Serratore "Now Matt has that opportunity with the Dallas organization and we couldn't be happier for him."

Serratore added, "This is another exciting time around Bemidji State. A situation like this is a great reflection of our program. It reinforces that we are doing a lot of things right and are bringing in great people. Our student-athletes have the opportunity to come to Bemidji State and excel not only on the rink, but also in the classroom. Matt is a perfect example of that. He finished his degree in education in just three and a half years. So he got the best of both worlds."