By Matt Stefano
The Soo Thunderbirds have announced today that 16 year old forward Keegan Stevenson has signed with the Ontario Hockey League’s Guelph Storm.
The Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario product, who had just completed his first season in the NOJHL, led all Thunderbird rookies in points with 35 through 54 regular season games and shared the Joey Mancuso Award with teammate Wyatt Villalta for the team’s rookie of the year.
“Getting the rookie of the year award felt awesome,” said Stevenson. “Being able to play as a rookie for the Thunderbirds was great. All the guys in the room looked out for me and helped me out, so I couldn’t have asked for better teammates and a better season.”
Stevenson, who was selected by the Guelph Storm in the 6th round (102nd overall) during the 2016 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection, was also the youngest player in the NOJHL this season.
He also missed Guelph Storm Training Camp last year due to an injury.
“Missing camp last year sucked,” said Stevenson, who tuned 16 years old on December 31st. “But now getting signed by them is great. I can’t wait to start new things and being able to play in a higher league. Being the youngest player in the NOJHL was tough, but I thought I handled it well. I always tried to get back up when I was down.”
Looking ahead to next season, Stevenson will have an opportunity to play with former Thunderbirds Nick Sicoly and Nolan Makkonen, who are both members of the Guelph Storm.
“I’m looking forward to playing with Nick and Nolan in Guelph,” concluded Stevenson. “Getting to know them even more and meeting new people is going to be fun. I can’t wait to go down and start playing.”
Stevenson will report to Guelph for Training Camp this August.