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Soo Thunderbirds Christmas Break: By The Numbers

By Matt Stefano

The holiday season is officially upon us and the Soo Thunderbirds are now on Christmas break until January 7.

And with already 28 games officially behind them, let’s take a look at how the team and some players did – by the numbers.

1. That’s where the Soo Thunderbirds currently sit in the NOJHL’s West Division standings.

The Thunderbirds, who are currently sitting in first place in the West, have a total of 43 points.

2. So far this season, the Soo Thunderbirds had two players on their team that were called up by Ontario Hockey League clubs.

Those two players were Cooper Foster (Ottawa 67’s) and Andrew Gibson (Soo Greyhounds).

3. Is the number of goaltenders the Soo Thunderbirds have on their current roster.

Those three goaltenders are Noah Zeppa, Noah Metiver and Nolan Chartrand.

4. So far this season, the Soo has only lost 4 games in regulation time.

Every other team in the NOJHL has more regulation time losses than the Thunderbirds.

5. Is the number of game-winning goals forward Tyson Doucette has scored so far this season.

Doucette also scored the game-winning goal in the Thunderbirds 5-2 win over the Soo Eagles back on December 17, which was their final game before the Christmas break.

6. Thunderbirds rookie forward and Mississauga Steelheads prospect Kenny Belanger Jr. currently has 6 goals this season.

Belanger Jr. scored his 6th goal of the season in the Thunderbirds 5-2 win over the Soo Eagles back on December 17 in Soo Michigan.

7. This season, Thunderbirds rookie forward Cooper Foster went on a 7-game point scoring streak, which lasted from October 20 – November 7.

During that 7-game point scoring streak, the Ottawa 67’s prospect recorded 2 goals and 11 assists.

8. Eight is the number that Thunderbirds rookie forward Samuel Lake wears on the back of his jersey.

Lake, who started his season wearing No. 61, then switched to No. 8 after Andrew Gibson joined the team.

9. So far this season, Thunderbirds forward Tyson Doucette has scored 9 power play goals.

His 9 power play goals are currently the second most in the NOJHL, behind Hearst Lumberjacks forward Robbie Rutledge, who has 11.

10. That’s the number of goals forward Michael Chaffay has heading into the Christmas break.

Chaffay, who recorded his first career hat trick back on December 12 against Espanola, gave himself his 8th, 9th and 10th goals of the season.

11. Is number of road wins the Thunderbirds currently have this season.

No other team in the NOJHL has more road wins this season than the Soo Thunderbirds.

12. Twelve is the number that rookie defenceman Kolby Fellinger wears on the back of his jersey.

This is also the second straight season that a defenceman on the Thunderbirds decided to wear No. 12.

13. Thunderbirds rookie defenceman Andrew Gibson currently leads all NOJHL blueliners in goals with 13.

Gibson, who has 13 goals this season, is just two goals away from breaking the Soo Thunderbirds record for most goals by a Soo Thunderbird defenceman in a single season.

14. Fourteen is the number rookie defenceman Kyle Trottier wears on the back of his jersey.

Ethan Novello previously wore No. 14 on the back of his jersey during the 2020-2021 season, before switching to No. 21 at the beginning of 2021-2022.

15. That’s where the Soo Thunderbirds are currently ranked in this week’s final CJHL rankings for 2021.

The Thunderbirds, who are currently ranked No. 15 in the nation this week, moved up two spots this week after being ranked No. 17 one week ago.

16. So far this season, the Thunderbirds have two players that are currently tied for the team-lead in assists with 16.

Those two players are forwards Cooper Foster are Brock Santa Maria.

17. Goaltender Nolan Chartrand made 17 saves in his first game played with the Soo Thunderbirds back on November 13 against the Espanola Express.

That night, Chartrand and the Thunderbirds went on to defeat the Espanola Express by a score of 6-2 at the John Rhodes Community Centre in Sault Ste. Marie.

18. Eighteen is the number rookie forward Kelsey Ouellet wears on the back of his jersey.

Ouellet, who wears No. 18, currently sits fifth in team scoring with 20 points.

19. Heading into the holiday break, the Soo Thunderbirds have a total of 19 wins on the season.

No other team in the NOJHL’s West Division has more wins this season than the Soo Thunderbirds.

(Photo of Thunderbirds forward Michael Chaffay credit to Bob Davies)

 

 

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