Austin Fellinger signs with the Thunderbirds

By Matt Stefano

Another Fellinger is joining the Bird nest!

The Soo Thunderbirds have announced today that they have signed 2005-birth-year defenceman Austin Fellinger for the 2022-2023 season.

“It’s a great feeling to be able to play here in the Soo,” Fellinger said. “I know the Thunderbirds coaching staff will keep me in the best shape and help me develop on and off the ice. I’m looking forward to the upcoming season and I can’t wait to get started with my new team.”

Fellinger, who is from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, spent last season with the Great North Under-18 Hockey League’s Soo Jr. Greyhounds, where he led all Great North Under-18 Hockey League defencemen in scoring with 19 points, including 1 goal and 18 assists in 24 regular season games.

Last season, the 17-year-old also helped the Jr. Greyhounds win the Great North Under-18 Hockey League championship.

“Austin took big strides in his game last season and really led the Under-18 Jr. Hounds to winning a championship,” said Soo Thunderbirds assistant coach and general manager Jamie Henderson.

Prior to last season, Fellinger was also drafted in the 11th round (218th overall) by the Ontario Hockey League’s Soo Greyhounds in the 2021 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection.

“Austin will continue to work and hopefully he can push for a spot on the Ontario Hockey League’s Hounds for the upcoming season,” Henderson said.

During the 2021-2022 season, the 17-year-old blueliner also suited up for a pair of games with the Soo Thunderbirds, including one in the regular season and one during the playoffs.

“I was lucky enough to play two games last season with the Thunderbirds and travel down to Estevan, Saskatchewan with them for the Centennial Cup,” Fellinger said. “The Thunderbirds treated me like I was with them the whole season and I had an amazing experience with them. The Thunderbirds coaching staff was also incredible and very respectful, and they always made sure I felt comfortable.”

Fellinger, who stands 6’0 inches tall and weighs 183 pounds, is also the younger brother of current Soo Thunderbirds defenceman Kolby Fellinger.

“I love playing with my older brother,” Fellinger said. “We are very competitive against each other, so I know it will push us both to become better. Kolby is someone I have always looked up to and to play hockey with him on the defending NOJHL champion Soo Thunderbirds is even more special. I can’t wait to continue my hockey career while having the possibility to being partners with my brother (Kolby) on the blueline.”

(Photo of Austin Fellinger with the Soo Jr. Greyhounds credit to Bob Davies)

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