Kevin Pitts and Isaiah Fox are lifelong friends. They do everything together, like going to school together and signing tenders with the Maine Nordiques of the North American Hockey League.

“When we were talking to Fox, he signed his tender during his spring break, Pitts was at his house hanging out,” Maine Nordiques director of player recruitment and advancement Cam Robichaud said. “We were going to call Pitts right after there and he was right there. We got their tenders the same day.”

Robichaud likes signing guys who are close off the ice, as it helps the team culture in addition to the chemistry they have on the ice together.

Both come from Quebec as Fox, 18, is from Pierrefonds and has been at Holderness School in Plymouth, New Hampshire for the past two seasons. Pitts, 19, hails from Pointe-Claire and played for the Lac St-Louis Lions midget program prior to joining Holderness the past two seasons. Lac St. Louis alumni include Stefan Fournier, Dillon Fournier, Michael Chaput and Stefan Chaput, who all played for the Lewiston Maineiacs.

Robichaud said the Nordiques not only look at where a kid is playing at the high school or prep level, but where they have played during their youth or midget hockey days. Coming from strong hockey programs is something the organization looks at.

That they played at Holderness is interesting, as it’s the same school that the Nordiques’ first tender signing and University of Maine commit Connor Androlewicz also played this season.

“It’s coincidence, that Connor is from there as well,” Robichaud said. “It wasn’t something like: ‘Hey, lets attack everybody from Holderness.’ We were in conversations with Maine about goaltenders, Connor’s (name came up), we ended up signing him. As we were attacking our list of respective recruits, Pitts and Fox were on there. Just happens our first handful of tenders, three of them happen to be from Holderness.”

The two forwards, who are each 5-foot-11, were seniors this year and were two of the top Bulls offensive threats this past season, as they each had 54 points. Fox had 30 goals while Pitts, the team’s captain, had 21. They are tied for second in scoring in all of New England prep school hockey.

“They are both high-profiled guys who we expect to be there opening night for us,” Robichaud said. “I think both had 54 points, so they combined for 108 points. They are energy guys that can bring skill and size. We are really excited to have them. They were top players in the prep league this year.”

With Pitts and Fox signed to tenders, the total is up to seven. In addition to Androlewicz, Cole Ouellette, Alex Rivet, Manny Sanchez and Derek Hessinger have signed with the Nordiques. The team can sign three more tenders, but two of them had to play in the North American Prospects League this season.

Robichaud said the recruitment process has been pretty good with the amount of players they have signed the past two weeks. He said they are looking at players who also have the option to play in the Tier I United States Hockey League or a Junior “A” league in Canada, where it might take a little longer to sign those kids to assess their options.

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