Metiver makes history in Thunderbirds final game of their regular season

By Matt Stefano

Saturday night’s game in Cochrane marked the final game on the Soo Thunderbirds 2021-2022 regular season schedule.

And for Noah Metivier, it was a night to remember!

On Saturday night, Soo Thunderbirds rookie goaltender Noah Metiver made 23 saves for 6th shutout of the season, helping his hometown Thunderbirds to a 2-0 win over the Cochrane Crunch at the Tim Horton Event Centre in Cochrane.

Metivier, who recorded his 6th shutout of the season, also set the new team record for most shutouts by a Soo Thunderbird goaltender during a regular season, passing Frank Novello (2000-2001), John Kleinhans (2011-2012) and Brandon Gordon (2016-2017), who all shared the previous record with 5.

“It feels amazing to have my name in the record book, especially in my rookie year with the Thunderbirds,” said Soo Thunderbirds rookie goaltender Noah Metiver, who set the record in the Thunderbirds final game of their 2021-2022 regular season. “I definitely couldn’t have done it without my teammates and my supporters. They have been with me from the start of the season and I can’t thank them enough.”

Not only did Metivier pick up his 6th shutout of the season on Saturday night, but the Thunderbirds rookie netminder also recorded his third consecutive shutout, making him the first Thunderbird goaltender to record three straight shutouts since Connor Ryckman did back in the 2016 postseason.

“We are really happy for Tives,” said Soo Thunderbirds head coach Cole Jarrett. “He is a competitor and he shows it every time he’s on the ice. He should be very proud of his accomplishments.”

During Saturday night’s game, the Thunderbirds recorded a season-high 57 shots on net, including 28 in the opening period.

Despite outshooting the Crunch 28-5 in the opening period, the teams skated scoreless through twenty minutes of play.

“Tonight we put a lot of pucks on net, but we struggled to get quality chances,” Jarrett said. “I thought we did a good job of not getting frustrated when things weren’t going our way. We stuck with the plan and found a way to get the two points.”

After a scoreless opening period, it would then be the Thunderbirds getting on the board at the 3:23 mark of the second, courtesy of Andrew Gibson’s team-leading 21st goal of the season from Ethan Novello and Russell Oldham, which gave the Thunderbirds a 1-0 lead after forty minutes of play.

The Thunderbirds would then go up 2-0 at the 8:04 mark of the third period, courtesy of Colby Arbour’s 6th goal of the season from Kyle Trottier and Russell Oldham.

Oldham’s assist on Arbour’s goal also gave him his second assist of the evening.

Crunch goaltender Michael Nickolau gave up 2 goals on 57 shots in the loss.

With the win, the Thunderbirds have now concluded their 2021-2022 regular season with a record of 38 wins, 5 losses, 2 overtime losses and 2 shootout losses, good for 81 points and first overall in the NOJHL standings.

The Thunderbirds, who picked up a road victory in Cochrane on Saturday night, also tied their franchise record for most wins on the road during a regular season with 21.

“That’s an amazing accomplishment for our group,” Jarrett said. “In a shortened season where we only played 24 road games, 21 wins on the road is pretty impressive and it’s something the boys should be proud of.”


On Saturday night in Cochrane, the Thunderbirds recorded their 14th straight road victory, which set the new franchise record for the longest road winning streak in a regular season.

The previous record was 13, which they had back in the 2011-2012 season.


The Thunderbirds, who have gotten a bye into the NOJHL West Division semifinal series, will now await to play the winner of the NOJHL West Division qualifier series between the 4th place Blind River Beavers and the 5th place Elliot Lake Red Wings.

The Beavers and Red Wings will begin their best-of-three qualifier series on Monday, April 3 in Blind River.

(Photo of Thunderbirds goaltender Noah Metivier credit to Bob Davies)

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