May days in the NOJHL

Soo Thunderbirds are the only Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League team still playing but there is plenty of activity with the other six teams.

The Dudley Hewitt Cup champion Thunderbirds are representing the NOJHL and a region of Ontario at the Royal Bank Cup national tournament that is being held out in Humboldt, Sask.

HERE ‘N THERE

…In North Bay, the Trappers have already held a free agent tryout camp as the organization gets a head start on the 2012-13 season. North Bay will be the site of the 2013 Dudley Hewitt Cup, Central Canada playdowns and as host entry, the Trappers have automatic entry into the tournament.

…As we first reported here, Abitibi Eskimos have shrugged off a group that was interested in buying the team and moving it from Iroquois Falls to Timmins. That was one sigh of relief from among many. Another is that veteran coach Paul Gagne will return to the Eskimos for yet-another season. Gagne is among the top Jr. A hockey coaches in all of Canada and along with team president Scott Marshall, are the respected faces of the Abitibi franchise.

…Owner Bill Scott has put the Sudbury Cubs up for sale. Sudbury was the worst draw in the NOJHL during the 2011-12 season, averaging a woeful 137 fans per game.

…Kirkland Lake Gold Miners have hired Marc Lafleur as their new head coach. Lafleur has been an assistant with the major junior Rouyn-Noranda Huskies the past two seasons.

…Blind River Beavers are looking for a new coach and general manager after being blown off by Bryan Verreault. Verreault, formerly of the Sudbury Jr. Wolves and Sudbury Cubs, had lined himself up to buy the Beavers and take over as coach and GM. First, he backed out of buying the team. Then, after saying he would still like to be the coach and GM, Verreault backed away from that as well. Hasta la vista, Bryan.

…The new Elliot Lake Bobcats are prepping for a tryout camp to be held at Countryside Arena in Sudbury May 25-27. Bobcats coach-GM Ryan Leonard has aligned himself with long-time associates Chad Vresk, Brad Boyer and Charly Murray in the hockey department as the team strives to build on the five-year success it enjoyed in the non-sanctioned Greater Metro Jr. Hockey League. To get a hold of Leonard for tryout camp or any other information linked to the Bobcats, he can be reached at 705-257-0132.

92 thoughts on “May days in the NOJHL

  1. North Shore Hockey

    Good updates on the “other” 6 Teams in the League, RR. I am tired of reading about the Soo Thunderbirds and all of the negativity that they have caused to the NOJHL. The Thunderbirds are in the News for all of the wrong reasons and they are a downer on the rest of the League. This is to bad as I had always heard good things about the Thunderbirds before they apparently decided that they did not have to play by the rules.

  2. Beavers1

    Not much talk about the Beavers being sold altho I did hear that the Bertholet chap is intrested in buying the team. Perhaps Reg or Gramma Beaver or Kerri might know some more as fans are anxious to build up a rivalrey with Ryan Lenard and the Elliot Lake team. I also hear maybe a Coach from the Sault to take over – the guy who used to Coach the Soo TBirds a few years ago.?

  3. American Eagle

    the Soo Thunderbirds should join the Molson’s Men’s Hockey League next season. Then they can drink in the dressing room after the games.

  4. KL Flash

    This is a excallant hire by the KL Gold Miners getting Mark Lafleur to Coach as he is one of the most respctd Coach’s in North Eastern Ontario. This is quite the good news getting a former Coach from the “Q” to come to Kirkland. Abitibi has Paul Gagne and now we have Mark Lafleur – two of the best in Junior Hockey!

  5. EL Bobcats Fan

    Cant wait for Elliot Lake Bobcats & Blind River Beavers = Old Time Hockey on the North Shore!!!

  6. eaglenews

    He!! of an effort TBirds, great control of your troops Toots, congrats TBirds… keep it going

  7. Eskisfan

    Go Birds Go! What an unbelievable win knocking off the #1 rated team in Canada, the mighty Penticiton Vees. Kleinhanns is playing just out of this world. Great job JK.
    For those who are not aware, you can watch the Royal Bank Cup live and for free on fast hockey.

    Keep battling Birds you just never know.

    KL gets Lafleur, that is absolutely huge. He’s going to turn the Miners into a contender in a hurry. This guy will get the kids to KL guaranteeed. Good for the Gold Miners, good for the NOJHL.

  8. Scott Kell

    Johnny K for starter in 2014..huge win for the birds and great way to start the tourny

  9. Cubs Fan

    is the new team from Michigan that was spoke about a while back dead in the water now dudes or what ? Glad to here the cubs are up for sale lets hope the next owners can right the ship and get us to the DUD next season !

  10. ABITIBIAN

    With the hire of Lafleur, the steady pipeline of players from Hearst will by-pass Abitibi and go straight to K-L plus he will get the northern Quebec boys.It will be a force to recon with.

    Congrats on the T-Birds win !!
    Go NOJHL GO

  11. hockey dad

    TBirds! Wow what a great team effort – when you have such confidence in your goaltender and the forwards come back and helpout it makes a huge difference! What a great performance good for the boys and the NOJHL. Keep it up guys! Next game today at 5pm.

  12. upfront

    American Eagle

    Give it up you are beating a dead horse the matter has been delt with
    I know your still bitter but your teams season is over so move on to the nahl GO BIRDS GO !!!!!!!!!

  13. American Eagle

    upfront:

    The Eagles may have lost to the Thunderbirds however they did so with class.
    The Thunderbirds on the other hand have been a major embarrasment to there fans there city and the NOJHL.
    Fans should be celebrating the Thunderbirds and there NOJHL & Dudley Hewitt Championships. Insted most of the talk about the Thunderbirds has been about getting drunk on the bus and coach’s being suspended indefinitly.
    Give it up you say? It is hard to “give it up” when your “Sault Star” (not RR’s paper) keeps writing about the suspensions and now even one of the team’s sponsors is whining like a spoiled child because of the suspensions.
    At least the Eagles have there reputation intact.
    The Thunderbirds on the other hand no longer have a good reputation.
    As RR himself wrote about the Thunderbirds:
    WIN A CHAMPIONSHIP – LOSE A REPUTATION
    I think that says it all!

  14. Fan of Noj

    I agree that enough putting down the T-Birds. To me they are a great bunch of boys who work extremely hard! Their hard work and closeness as a team has allowed them to get this far! Them beating the #1 Ranked team in Canada shows how hard they work and how good our league is – which is a great reflection on the rest of the teams in the league!! Keep it up TBirds – I am very proud of you!

  15. eaglenews

    TBirds are heading into OT with Portage, great set up from G Sartoretto to Amadio to tie it up. Great showing TBirds… Go Soo Go (Give it a rest AE)

  16. North Bay Hockey

    74 Shots on Big Jon K, if he dose not come out with a D1 schooly people are crazy, and if they can get 1 more W in regulation they will be guranteed a semi spot, Let’s go Birds! Enjoy your day of rest…

    Don’t have too many pops… Lol to soon?

  17. Brother99

    The NOJHL is on the map this week. Also for the right reason hockey. Also through the players perserverance. Go TBIRDS.

  18. Brother99

    Oh you all are just now recognizing JK’s talent lol. I remember a post a couple of years ago I made when you all were looking commenting about other tenders. Yes peachy I am bragging, always liked that kid, as I said back then I am partial to smaller tenders, they are closer to the ice where 70% of all goals are made. That is an advantage not a hinderance.

  19. Scott Kell

    stevie weeks you hiding in a jar of pickles with vlassic?..still waiting for your rbc prediction..your playoff predictions were right on the money so i dont know why you would stop now

  20. Eskisfan

    Great Effort by Tbirds, no shame in that loss. Day of rest should do the kids good. For the Birds to be successful, they’ll need to be the hardest working team there, just as they have in the first 2 games. No one is taking them lightly anymore so the surprise element is gone.

    Very happy for Johnny K, this is just great for him.
    Keep battling Birds, you’ve done the league a better service than any team has in the past 10 years. (regardless or the bullcr@p or what any Poo Eagle fans say) You have the every true NOJHL fan right behind you. Keep her going, 100% and you’ll have zero regrets win or lose. Go Birds Go

    This is great fun, can’t wait to watch game 3.

    A quote from the Protage Terriers Head coach.

    “It’s their second game in two days and they played one of the better teams in Canada that was rated one of the first, they had an emotional win last night and came out to battle tonight,” Spiller said.

    “I like their team, they’re not an easy team to play against and their goaltender makes them even tougher.

  21. Peachy

    Peachy go to Blind Drunk River for Stag tomorro & go for tale in Spragg on way back home ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

  22. Beavers1

    Beavers advertizing for Coach and G.M. 1 name who I have heard about is Shawn Gagnon from the Soo who used to be with the T-Birds for a time.

  23. Trapperfan

    Give ‘er Birds!!!! This team is working hard for every inch of ice they get. It is that perserverience that will take them a long way. It’s a great way for the 20 year olds to go out this year, win or lose. JK… is definetly in the zone, keep the wall up Johnny!!! This is great hockey and the NOJHL is being represented very well.

  24. Eskisfan

    Two more good stories RR!! One small correction though, the Rayside Balfour Sabrecats are the closest a team from Northern Ontario came to winning the Royal bank Cup (or most Recently at least) losing 2-1 to the Fort McMurray Oil Barons in the final. I still remember watchin that game live on TSN.

  25. Randy Russon Post author

    Eskisfan,

    I don’t write the Royal Bank Cup Notebook stories. They come from the NOJHL Office.

    Regards,

    RR

  26. Cubs Fan

    is the RBC a goals for and goals against type of event like the dhc ? thanks !

    Good luck to the T- Birds Tomorrow !

  27. David Harrison

    To assure themselves of a playoff spot the T-Birds have to win tomorrow against the Woodstock Slammers.
    This would leave the Slammers with only one win.
    If Penticton loses tonight then the T-Birds would advance because they defeated Penticton.

  28. Old Goat

    Too bad Sault Star reporter Peter Ruicci had to get his panties in a knot that the T-Birds won’t accept interviews. It is their choice to obviously show support for the former coaching staff. There was no need to rehash the problems once again in print, just report on the games never mind the other issues.

    On another note, with no Thunderbirds upper management at the RBC, it is status quo with the “Sounds of Silence”, leave it to the players eh ???

  29. offtherecord

    Lot’s of Sault Star newspaper subscriptions getting cancelled this week, due to the juvenile reporting by Peter Ruicci and Bill Montague. Do they seriously think that people are going to back them on their little hissy fits ’cause the players don’t want to talk to the people that are trashing them in the press? This issue has been blown out of proportion cause people don’t seem to have anything better to talk about in this boring city.
    So pathetic really when sports reporters like Ruicci and Montague seem to think that a group of kids, who the great majority are over 19 were drinking some beers on the bus, is really big news and has to write about it repeatedly and use the fact that they’re playing in the RBC Cup to sell some papers.
    It’s embarassing to the whole city, not what the team did (we all know they’re not the first, or last, team to do it), but how the Sault Star press is handling it and how the team owner is throwing everybody under the bus to make himself look innocent. Telling the reporter that he told the kids they had to talk to the Sault Star is a new low for him. How does anybody expect the kids to play hockey this week with all this crap happening? Everybody should be ashamed of what they are doing to them. Ok, so they messed up, like all kids do, but for the “adults” to not let it go is again, really, really pathetic.
    And now Montague has added Toots to his list of people to trash cause he didn’t “make” the boys talk to them??…. who’s next? the message being sent out is that if you don’t cooperate with the press… you’re going to be called out in print?
    That is bullying by both Ruicci and Montague and just out right unprofessional!

    Best wishes to the Tbirds tomorrow! There’s more people rooting for them than they realize, despite what the loud minority are saying.
    Go Birds Go

  30. Randy Russon Post author

    latest RR column just posted on http://www.juniorhockey.com:

    Tony the Tornado adds to title total

    (includes content to related to Soo and OHL and mentions the father of a current Thunderbird, NOJHLer.)

  31. SovEaglefan

    This is why true NOJHL and junior hockey fans go to here, the Sault This Week, and juniorhockey.com for respected and fair journalists like Randy Russon and Stephen Heisler who don’t have an axe to grind with players or coaches, who give us the most in-depth coverage all season long and who report only the facts and never make it a personal thing. Keep up the great work Randy!

  32. upfront

    Well said offtherecord

    First off, Montague takes aim at he the parents saying they failed the kids as parents. Then he has the audacity to personally attack the Sartaretto boys after all that has been going on with their dad having had major surgery.
    Now I have seen some lows in that newspaper but this time Montague has gone really low. and Monatague and Ruicci wonder why the Thunderbird players won’t talk!

    GO BIRDS GO !!!!!!!

  33. Brother99

    Well I thought I had seen everything until this Sault Star coverage. Though I do disagree with not talking with the press I am glad that the Tbirds took a collective team decision and are sticking to it. As for class — the only lack of class I see IMO is the Sault Star’s one sided editorial which isn’t reporting or journalism again IMO.

    RR you have class and reported on this early on and again IMO fairly and with professionalism. I do feel sorry for the players exposure but I am sure they are getting plenty from the scouts on site on ice playing hockey which beats a small papers press. Also as for JK he is a coaches player.

  34. Beavers1

    Hope to see some new faces on the Beavers Board of Directors for next season. That gossipy old hag needs to go so do a few others who are there for their own egos and no more. We need good honest people to carry on like Gramma Beaver and Kerry but we need to add by subtracting a few of the big mouths.

  35. eskisfan

    Just looked for coverage of the last game and saw the Peter Ruicci article in the Sault Star. What a joke! Throw them under the bus and then you expect them to be excited to talk to you? Kidding me? You think they want yours or anyone’s help for that matter? These men may be young but they weren’t born yesterday.

    Want to sell your newspaper with a smear campaign, giv’er but don’t expect sympathy for being “cut off” while the Birds are still flying. I figured at the end of the tourney/season the players would provide comments for the Star, after that lil fit, i hope that Ruicci and (The Star) get nothing.
    “Hurting themselves more than anyone”? You are wrong Ruicci! Anyone really who cares about the boys knows how to find the pertinent hockey information.

    I still hold the NOJHL head office responsible for most of this garbage. You can deal with the issue without going to the media and without all kinds of allegations, some still unfounded. Coaches got canned and that sure sounds justified, but it’s the kids who got the black eye and monkey on their back during what should be one of the most memorable and enjoyable experiences of thier lives. It’s shame, but it appears no one wants to feel one ounce of responsibility for that shame.

    If the Birds are in Humboldt busting their ass and battling through it all for no one but their family and thier fellow soldiers, i wouldn’t blame for em a second.

    Birds looked a lil tired and frustrated yesterday, but still put up a good fight against one hell of a hockey club. Big Broncos had em hemmed in a few tiimes and really sucked out the energy leading to fatigue or deperation penalties. Good effort all in all though. They’ll need to make the Slammers work for everything they get on Thursday, if don’t give em any gifts I think they’ll be playing the Semi.

    Go Birds Go.

  36. Five Toes

    As a proud parent of an ex NOJHL player I say Go T-Birds. The level of play they are experienciecing is second to none. Winning the Central is one hell of an accomplishiment, beating a D-1 ladented BCHL team is priceless. Small town NOHJ hockey is about
    making lasting relationships.

  37. Love of NOJ

    Well said – IMO the only “primadonna” is Montague with his bullying tactics to the players and even Toots – bringing up Hartzy – how low can he go!
    Montague’s Sault Star is worse than the National Inquirer – not a respectable newspaper – I will join the list of cancelled subscriptions as I have had enough!!

    Good luck T-Birds hope you make it to the semi’s!!! GO BIRDS GO!!

  38. Soo Thunderbird Parent

    We have Randy who covers the Thunderbirds and the NOJHL with objectivity and profesionalism. If others do not have the ability or desire to do the same then the team and the league are much better off without them. No one should have to beg for honest, profesional coverage. Bullying is no longer tolerated in todays society.

  39. Ritchie Donaghue

    I think I would prefer to read how close the TBirds are in the overall standings, as the goals for and goals against are probably closer than the RBC has been in a long time (if not in history) What about a story of great kids from great families are finishing junior careers in a manner NO ONE would have predicted. Having been involved with TBirds, and having many friends with sons that played with this group of truly dedicated people – who truly care, I believe the press locally (not RR) has shown no regard for objective (and interesting) journalism. Now give those Slammers a good old Northern Ontario ass whoopin, and keep it rolling.

  40. offtherecord

    I agree Ritchie – this could be an awesome “story” for our city to be telling, but instead they (Montague and Ruicci) wanna talk trash. Not showing a lot of intelligence are they??

    I’ll be watching and cheering on the Tbirds tomorrow, just like I have ever game of RBC and Dudley (isn’t fasthockey amazing?) I know they wish their coaches were with them this week and are playing every game for them. You’re doing them proud guys! You beat the top ranked team and that over time loss could’ve went either way. I think your team loyalty is commendable, keep your heads high and play your game tomorrow and anything can happen!

    GO BIRDS GO

  41. stick

    Looks like the Soo paper (Sault Star not Sault This week) is worse than the Nugget in NB for good coverage of our NOJHL teams. It is very sad when these two Sault Star reporters won’t let the past go and start reporting on the good job the Birds are doing in Humbolt. I for one will be cheering tomorrow for these true North lads. Go Birds Go

  42. eaglefan

    Time to leave it all out there TBirds. Great job guys. You’ve made every NOJHL fan proud.

    Sadly, Ruicci seems to have bought into Montague’s style of reporting. They’ve ignored the TBirds and the NO all year, every year, and only now step out of the bushes to repeat, over and over, the negatives, while ignoring the good story going on under their noses. I cancelled my Sault Star subscription long ago. Junk reporting.

    Keep up the good work RR. Those who follow, know.

  43. eaglenews

    Yes Yes Yes, Michelcavage puts the icing on the cake, great game TBirds, now there’s a story

  44. Ronny

    I think it is time to take into question the integrity of the local Sault Star reporters.

    As a community, we have become wrapped up in the drama and here-say of matters that have already been fully dealt with by both the Commissioner and the Thunderbird ownership. This team has undoubtedly surpassed all expectations and is representing our community in front of Canada, and instead of cheering them on we have reports of how immature and foolish the team is.

    Those boys have a right to focus on the game and not on the continued slander and lack of support from the Sault Star. As an organization, the publicity that comes along with this achievement is monumental.

    With saying that, why should the owner not want to encourage his team to be the bigger people? I do not believe that to be throwing them under the bus after all of the time, dedication and funding that has provided.

    As for the General Manager, Kevin has done an excellent job mentoring and providing for these players. Shame on everyone for their disregard and judgement. In my opinion, any one of the NOJHL teams could have received the same investigation and no doubt in my mind the same conduct would have been discovered. Unfortunately, the Thunderbirds have been made an example of.

    This organization continues to hold their head up high as they prove to the NOJHL community that they are well above this nonsense after experiencing such a set back. That alone is what should be highlighted.

    The team has moved forward- so should the community. As a local fan, I truly enjoy watching these boys and to have the community and the media attack the team like they have really shows how low our community spirit is.

    To Peter Ruicci and Bill Montague, I have lost all respect for you both, I can not believe how immature and foolish your “reporting” is. There is a big difference between reporting the facts and bullying an organization for not supporting your column after you continued to report old news.

    I would like to thank Albert for all he has done for this team and other local sports. I believe he and Kevin have done an excellent job in supporting and bringing attention to our local talent and for that I thank them. Everyone needs to give their heads a shake and remind themselves how easy it is to judge and comment on such events but until they are in such a position and until they are playing, they should think twice before what they write and say to others.

    I commend the players, the staff and the ownership for representing our community so well. I can not wait to see the Thunderbirds achieve even more greatness as they head to the semi-finals at the RBC Cup.

    Go Birds Go!!

  45. Cubs Fan

    congrats boy’s U one the Dudley wow , now your in the semis at the RBC on Saturday wow what a season U guys have had ! good luck boys !

  46. Sigs_2012

    Congrats T-birds. You have supporters up in Eskis country, and we admire your effort and determination.

  47. Ex_NOJHLer

    Nathan Hewitt will be leaving his position as head coach of the Temiscaming Titans effective Monday May 7th, 2012. Nathan has accepted the position of assistant coach for the NOJHL Kirkland Lake Gold Miners.

  48. stick

    Well said Ronny, and a big Congratulations to Toots and the players on a great win today. Keep the ride going lads. Go Birds Go

  49. eaglenews

    totally enjoying the Fasthockey coverage, be great to have RR out there in the prairies doing some commentary. if woodstock plays the broncos it should be a slam fest, nice physical teams… i’ll take the slammers. TBirds and Vees… sweet

  50. eaglenews

    funny how a team from the soo can compete and beat a team that has a CJHL record for 19 NCAA scholarships, yet LSSU and other schools don’t look at our local boys. hmmmm

  51. offtherecord

    Great game Tbirds, congrats on the win and best wishes in the semi final game on Saturday. You’re doing the Soo and the NOJHL proud!

    Ronny, my beef with Giommi is that he keeps telling Star reporters stuff that is really nobody’s business but the teams. He seems to be doing it to make himself look good, but at somebody else’s expense. He’s not thinking about what’s best for the boys and how it’s affecting their playing hockey this week… he’s thinking about himself. All their hockey life they’ve been taught team loyalty, they’re trying to live up to that, too bad the rest of the organization isn’t.

    GO BIRDS GO!

  52. hockeyguy01

    congrats to the tbirds on there success thus far in there quest for the rbc cup. come on boys, you have done great so far. like my dad always said,if you dont have the horses,you cant pull the wagon. well guess what boys,you guys have the horses, lets pull that wagon across the finish line. all true hockey fans here in the north are cheering you on.

  53. Ronny

    offtherecord,

    You clearly do not know Albert personally and are buying into the here-say and drama. Start supporting your team instead of focusing on all the negativity being put forth by the media. His credibility and selflessness is well known by those close to him and therefore as an outsider you seem to be judging the book by its cover. Such a shame since our team is competing at the most important tournament of the season and all you seem to care about is the drama. Lets get back to commenting on the skills, abilities, and potential this team has to take home the gold!

    Go Birds Go- I can not wait for Saturdays game !!

  54. Brother99

    First wondering how the Star feels being on the outside looking in oh that is where they have always been.

    Second go TBIRDS do the NOJHL proud.

    Third not that I agree with this but I believe that until last year with the Eagles showing at Dudley and the Tbirds showing at the Dudley/RBC colleges would have thought why look. As for the three UP schools being so close I can’t tell you why they wouldn’t look. I will say though cooperation is needed both ways like TC had with LSSU. I do know for a fact that a couple of NOJHL teams ignored suggestions. With this season I am sure recuiting will be better than ever and scouting by colleges will increase. Also the NOJHL needs to recruit the younger players that the colleges are looking at from AAA.

  55. Brother99

    Oh those are just my thoughts and not meant to be negative in anyway against anyone. Just suggestions on how to make it might get better. The NOJHL needs to keep trying and playing well and I believe it will get better.

  56. eaglenews

    hmmm…. picked up the Sault Star this afternoon, and maybe I’m missing it, but there was not a word about the TBirds. maybe the writers should take their bats and balls and go home. Amadio, son of Dave, Romano , known as romes, connolly, his father was a pit bull, saroretto, 2 of them, campbell from the north shore, hicks (his dad hides his mayor’s cup trophies, etc, etc. give them vees a good whoopin!

  57. offtherecord

    Just read on the RBC Cup site that at their awards banquet tonight, John Kleinhans has won the Most Valuable Player award and the Top Goaltender award. Mickey Sartaretto got the Most Sportsmanlike Player. Kris Barclay won the RBC scholarship award for the team. Congratulations boys and best wishes to the team on tomorrows game! I’d say that regardless of how tomorrows game goes, win or lose, you definitely didn’t get “humbled in Humbolt”!!

    GO BIRDS GO

  58. upfront

    For some added Thunderbird RBC Cup coverage go to Local2.ca. They have pictures and interviews with Toots

    The Star has not written about the team since the begining of the week. I guess they are acting like their shoe size instead of their age .

    Big game today GO BIRDS GO !!!

  59. Cubs Fan

    Off to work boys ! but all the best today ! hope to see U guys on tsn 2 tomorrow night good luck fellas

  60. eaglefan

    I’ve got the game on fasthockey. There is no charge for the games, apparently. Create an account, but no credit card requested.

    Also, the stands look empty tonight. Even the announcer commented on that. I would think the Essar would be packed, were this tourney to happen in the Sault.

    Good luck guys…

  61. stick

    Lets take our hats off to the Birds all thought they lost today they did beat the #1 and 2 ranked teams in Canada. You did the NOJHL and all the people pulling for you guys proud. You will have great memories for the rest of your life. Thank You

  62. offtherecord

    Congrats TBirds on one hell of a season! You did the city and the Nojhl proud. Last nights loss was disappointing I’m sure, but when you look back, the fact that you were the first Tbirds team to win the Dudley, went to the semi’s at the RBC and the awards received there, will be a year to remember for the rest of your lives. Thanks for a great season of hockey!

    On a side note, I was checking the last CJHL and the ranking for the last week of the regular season in Feb. were:

    1. Penticton Vees
    3. Humbolt Broncos
    7. Woodstock Slammers
    8. Soo Thunderbirds
    9. Portage Terriers

    The Tbirds were the only team on the list of the 4 teams that played at the Dudley and outside of Humbolt getting beat out in the semi’s, the teams are pretty much still in that order at the RBC. I guess the people that do up that ranking system know what they’re doing after all.

  63. Beavers1

    NOJHL is going foreward with Elliot Lake joining up. Mr. Mazzuca has this league going the right way.

  64. Cubs Fan

    Great jobs enjoy your summer boys ! you did your city and league proud all the best in your futures.

  65. bayinfo

    Congrats on an incredible season T Birds.

    Vees have four players drafted to the NHL in their line up. That Is better than many Major Junior A teams.

    All is well in Jr A hockey.

  66. Brother99

    Yes, congrats TBIRDS. I predict at least two if not three NOJHL teams make the top twenty next season. Someone told me once that they rank fairly well but also try to sprinkle in every region just to be fair. Well IMO the TBIRDS could have played in any league this year and had been winners.

    Just a thought as JK was getting his hardware I was wondering who was thinking of who. Was the Sault Star thinking of JK because I am sure he wasn’t thinking of them. Also I am sure JK and the Tbirds got all the coverage they could handle without dealing with the Star’s reporting. Again Game on.

  67. Eskisfan

    Great job Tbirds. You did the NOJHL and the Soo Thunderbirds Org a great service. Many, myself included hoped that the club would battle hard and remain competitive. you did more than that and you even gave the NOJHL hopes of RBC Championship. Beat the RBC Champs and Finalists during round robin play, no can take that away from you.

    You guys worked your butts off for great memories, i hope they last a lifetime and you have no regrets. Congrats a fine fine season of hockey.

  68. Peachy

    Peachy go to Iraqwa Falls for scouting trip on long weekend looking for Cougar and Beaver ahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

  69. billy syms

    I am commenting a little late because it has taken me a day to get over the loss! Fantastic job fellas you have done your city, your league, your organization and most importantly yourselves proud in what you have accomplished. To the coaching staff and the training staff, one hell of a job keeping those young men focused. To the organization you have assembled a fine group of young men. Fellas you have noyhing to hang your heads about. FANTASTIC JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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