skip navigation

Wildcats Add Athletic Goaltender, Rhett Kimmel!

By UA Hockey, 04/16/21, 5:00PM MDT


The Wildcats have struck again! This time bringing in a netminder for the 2021/22 recruiting class with the addition of athletic goaltender, Rhett Kimmel.

Rhett Kimmel, standing at 5’11”, 180-pounds, comes from Baden, Ontario, Canada and most recently played for the Stratford Warriors in the Greater Ontario Hockey League (GOJHL). Before his time with the Warriors, Kimmel played two seasons for the Elmira Sugar Kings (GOJHL). In both seasons with Elmira Rhett was named to the GOJHL Top Prospects Game in addition to being named the Midwest Conference Goaltender of the Month in January, 2020.

Growing up in Canada, my goal has always been to play at the highest level of hockey I possibly can and for as long as I can,” said Rhett Kimmel. “I am very proud and honored to have the opportunity to study at an academic institution as renowned as the university of Arizona while at the same time, be able to play for the Wildcat hockey program under Coach Berman.”

Kimmel has experienced a unique life path since he was born in Russia and holds a dual Canadian/Russian citizenship while speaking fluently in English and French. He is a very athletic goaltender with exceptional edge work who plays aggressively out on top of the crease. While he isn’t your prototypical big bodied goaltender he still has a way to look big in the net, taking away holes, due to his aggressive play and ability to stay big while in the net.

“We are incredibly excited about adding Rhett to our program,” said coach Berman. “He represents everything we demand out of our goaltenders. They need to be our hardest workers and to be ultra-competitive. To me, that raises the level of our day to day competition as a team. We are a process oriented program that is trying to change our best on a daily basis. That starts with our goaltenders and Rhett is the kind of competitor that can demand a level of intensity that can be infectious on the rest of the roster.”

“Usually when you are watching goalies on film the issue is getting them to be consistently aggressive and out on top of the crease. That is not an issue with Rhett since he plays a very aggressive game with an attacking mentality. Furthermore, because he is so good on his edges he has the ability to close in on space quickly and/or quickly react to a second shot. The opportunity for growth with Rhett will be on the mental approach of his game. Because he is so competitive and expects greatness on a daily basis he can often be really tough on himself. To me, that is a good thing, it just means he really cares and wants to be great. This can be common in younger goalies and is be easy to address. Once we take that step, I truly believe he can be one of the top goalies in the ACHA.”

The Wildcats have not had to recruit goaltending for quite some time now. Veteran goaltenders, Anthony Ciurro and Nolan Bivolcic, have admirably locked down the position since the 2017/18 season, both playing a major role in back to back WCHL Conference Championships. Nolan Bivolcic is set to return for his 5th season while Anthony Ciurro is still TBD.










Stratford Warriors








Elmira Sugar Kings








Elmira Sugar Kings