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D-man Stephenson set for Mos return
D-man Stephenson set for Mos return

Former Invicta Dynamos junior Joe Stephenson is to return to the club for 2019/20 with the 21 year old defenceman set to make his NIHL South Division 1 debut after joining from the Guildford Phoenix.

Joe Stephenson initially rose through the junior ranks in Gillingham before switching to the Guildford youth setup in 2013. He has remained in Surrey ever since, working his way through the under 16s, under 18s and under 20s, before making his senior debut in the NIHL South Division 2 in 2017/18.

In his first season with the Guildford Pheonix in the NIHL South’s second tier, Joe Stephenson featured in 27 games and tallied 7 points whilst only amassing 10 minutes of penalties. Last term he then remained with the Surrey based outfit where he continued to be a key figure on the blue line – icing in 26 outings and claiming 8 assists.

He again showed a high level of discipline – sitting in the box for just 12 minutes all season. Now the young skater is looking to take his game to the next level as he jumps to the NIHL South’s top tier at the club where it all began – in Gillingham with the Invicta Dynamos.

Speaking on his move back to Kent, Joe Stephenson said, “When I was younger I always looked up to the Invicta Dynamos so when Anthony Leone offered me the chance to play for the club this season it was a very easy decision to make. I’m delighted to be back”.

Stephenson was then asked what he hoped to bring to the team and he replied, “I think I’m a hardworking player and that I move the puck well. I’m really looking forward to challenging myself and competing at a higher level. I feel I can learn a lot from the more experienced players on the roster and I know the coaching staff have been putting a strong line-up together. I’m proud to be a part of it all for 2019/20”.

Player-Coach Anthony Leone then introduced his new signing to the supporters by saying, “Joe might be new to this league but he came through the junior ranks at Invicta before moving on to Guildford so he knows what we’re all about. He might be unknown to many of the fans but I can assure you that he’s a great signing for us.”

“When I first spoke to Joe I was excited about the possibility of bringing him back to Gillingham and it was great that he was just as enthusiastic to return. He is a defenceman who handles the puck well and is clever with it.”

“This season I expect him to partner a more experienced D-man and form a strong partnership, logging some good minutes in the process. I’m really happy to be bringing Joe home for the new campaign and look forward to working with him”.

Joe Stephenson will wear the number 40 jersey for the Invicta Dynamos when the new season begins in September.