The South Carolina Stingrays signed forward Patrick Gaul, the team announced Friday.

This is Gaul's third season with the Stingrays.

"I am very thankful to have Patrick back for another season," said Stingrays head coach Spencer Carbery. "He's an exact example of what we expect from our players on and off the ice. He displays a work ethic and passion on a daily basis that is second to none in this league."

Gaul, 24, was the first player announcement prior to last season and finished fourth on the team with 31 points, with 12 goals and 19 assists. He led the team with 67 games played last season.=

"I'm really excited to be coming back," Gaul said. "There is nothing not to love about Charleston and getting another chance to represent the Stingrays organization is exciting. I love the fans down there and have fun playing the game I love."

The Pittsburgh, Penn., native joined the Stingrays midway through the 2012-13 season after beginning his professional career with the Mississippi RiverKings, of the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL). In 33 contests with the Stingrays, Gaul had 10 points (six goals, four assists) and recorded 20 points (10 goals, 10 assists) in 31 games in Mississippi.

Prior to turning pro, the 5-foot-8, 175-pound forward attended Notre Dame for four seasons picking up 10 points (three goals, seven assists) in 80 games and helped the Fighting Irish capture a CCHA Championship in 2008-09.