By Matt Stefano
The Soo Thunderbirds have announced today that graduate Parker Morgan will be returning to the Sault College Cougars hockey club for the 2021-2022 season.
Morgan, who played this past season with the Thunderbirds, scored 6 times and set up 4 others in 21 games played.
This past season, the twenty-one-year old forward also finished tied for the league-lead in shorthanded goals with 2.
“I’m excited to be returning to the Cougs,” said Morgan. “They have a great program and an even better coaching staff and I’m looking forward to getting back on the ice to work for them.”
“My thoughts about my season with the Thunderbirds are nothing but good things,” Morgan added. “I’ve learned more than I ever have with our strong coaching staff and the great young talent we had. But I just wish we had one more of a season.”
Morgan, a Soo native, ended up signing with the Thunderbirds during the 2020 offseason, after hearing about the cancellation of the Sault College Cougars 2020-2021 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I decided to sign with the Thunderbirds because Denny (Lambert) reached out me and told me to try out,” said Morgan. “We also wanted to see if it was going fit in with my full-time school schedule at the college, and everything lined up and I couldn’t say no because it was a great opportunity.”
Morgan, who played this past season with the Thunderbirds, also wore the “A” on his chest for their road games.
“I felt humbled that they had confidence in me in my first year of junior to help lead the team behind such an amazing captain (Avery Rebek),” said Morgan.
Morgan also scored the game-winning goal in the Thunderbirds 7-5 win over the Blind River Beavers in game seven of the COVID Cup series back on March 28 at the John Rhodes Community Centre in Sault Ste. Marie.
The Thunderbirds also ended up winning that seven-game cohort series against the Beavers with 5 wins, 1 loss and 1 shootout loss.
“It felt great to get that goal and close the door on them,” said Morgan. “Connor Toms put a great shot on net for a tip and it’s something I’ll never forget.”
“What I remember from that series overall is how hard we worked and how much we came together as a team,” Morgan added.
Prior to joining the Thunderbirds, Morgan played two seasons with the Sault College Cougars hockey club from 2018-2020, where he scored 14 times and set up 20 others in 51 games played.
In 2019, Morgan also helped the Cougars win the ACHA Division 3 championship (national champions).
“Just being apart of that team is something I will always remember. There were so many guys on that team I looked up to and winning the national title was a bonus,” said Morgan.
Following this season with the Thunderbirds, Morgan was also the recipient of two team awards, including the Zoltan Toots Kovacs Memorial Trophy (Thunderbirds Hardest Working Player) and the Sault Sports Award (Players Player), which is voted upon the Thunderbird players.
“It’s not everyday that a player like Parker comes to a team and makes such a great impression on players and staff like he did,” said Thunderbirds general manager Trev Zachary. “He’s a quality player from an amazing family and we wish him the best while studying and playing at Sault College.”
Starting this fall at Sault College, Morgan will be taking the Protection Security & Investigation program.
(Photo of Parker Morgan credit to Bob Davies)