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OFFICIAL SITE OF THE SOO THUNDERBIRDS JUNIOR A HOCKEY CLUB

Staff

Denny Lambert
Head Coach

Lambert was hired as the Thunderbirds new head coach and assistant general manager on May 20th, 2020.

The Wawa, Ontario product is no stranger to the Thunderbirds organization or the hockey community of Sault Ste. Marie, as he served as the Thunderbirds director of operations during the 2016-2017 season and was an assistant coach/head coach with the Soo Greyhounds from 2003-2011.

The 50 year old served as an assistant coach with the Ontario Hockey League’s Soo Greyhounds from 2003-2008, where he worked alongside head coaches Marty Abrams (2003-2005) and Craig Hartsburg (2004-2008).

He then served as head coach of the Hounds from 2008-2011.

During his time as an assistant coach and head coach of the Hounds, Lambert also coached four former Soo Thunderbirds who went on to play in the National Hockey League, including Tyler Kennedy, Andrew Campbell, Jake Muzzin and Colin Miller.

Following his time behind the bench with the Greyhounds, Lambert then went on to become head coach the Canadian International Hockey League’s Batchewana Attack in the 2014-2015 season, where he led them to both league and playoff titles.

In 2016-2017, Lambert took over director of operations with the the Soo Thunderbirds, before going being named associate coach of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Gatineau Olympiques on January 31st, 2017.

During his playing career, the former forward suited up for three seasons with the Soo Greyhounds from 1988-1991, where he scored 65 goals, 148 points and 648 penalty minutes in 181 regular season games.

He also holds the Soo Greyhounds record for most penalty minutes by player in a regular season with 276, which was a record he set back in 1989-1990.

In his final season with the Greyhounds in 1990-1991, Lambert helped the club capture its second J. Ross Robertson Cup in franchise history.

Lambert also played in the National Hockey League from 1994-2002, splitting time with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Ottawa Senators, Nashville Predators and Atlanta Thrashers.

As a member of the Atlanta Thrashers in 1999-2000, Lambert also led the National Hockey League in penalty minutes with 219.

Prior to being named head coach of the Soo Thunderbirds, the 50 year old also served as an assistant coach of the Soo Greyhounds U15 AAA club, where he helped lead them to an NOHL U15 championship title.

Jeremy Stevenson
Associate Coach

Stevenson was hired as the new Thunderbirds assistant coach on May 20th, 2020.

The 46 year old played one season in the NOJHL with the Elliot Lake Vikings back in 1989-1990, where he scored 39 goals, 65 points and added 203 penalty minutes in 61 games.

Following his season with the Vikings, Stevenson was then selected in the 1st round (6th overall) by the Cornwall Royals in the 1990 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection.

Stevenson then went on to play fours season the Ontario Hockey League from 1990-1994, splitting time with the Cornwall Royals/New Market Royals and the Soo Greyhounds.

Following his four year Ontario Hockey League career, 46 year old then went on to play in the National Hockey League from 1995-2006, splitting time with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Nashville Predators, Minnesota Wild and Dallas Stars.

Mickey Sartoretto
Assistant Coach

Sartoretto was hired as the new Thunderbirds assistant coach on May 20th, 2020.

The 29 year old played one season with the Thunderbirds in 2011-2012, where he served as team captain and led the club in scoring with 43 goals and 97 points in 45 regular season games.

Sartoretto, who scored 21 third period goals during the 2011-2012 regular season, currently sits tied with David Borrelli (2001-2002) for most third period goals by a Thunderbird player in a regular season.

In the 2012 postseason, Sartoretto scored 9 goals, 20 assists and 29 points in 12 playoff games.

He also holds a pair of team playoff records, including most assists (20) and most points (29) in a single postseason

In 2011-2012, the Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario native also helped lead the Thunderbirds to their second Copeland Cup McNamara Trophy (NOJHL playoff champions) followed by their first ever Dudley Hewitt Cup title (Central Canada Champions).

During that successful season, the former Thunderbird captain was also named the NOJHL’s Best Overall Team Player, the leagues Playoff MVP, the RBC Cup’s Most Sportsmanlike Player and was named to the NOJHL’s First All-Star Team.

Sartoretto, who was selected in the 7th round (123rd overall) by the Kitchener Rangers in the 2007 Ontario Hockey League Priority Selection, played in the Ontario Hockey League from 2008-2011, splitting time with the Kitchener Rangers and the Saginaw Spirit.

Aidan Wright
Assistant Coach

Wright was hired as the Thunderbirds new assistant coach on May 20th, 2020.

The former defenceman played four seasons with the Lake Superior State University Lakers hockey club from 2014-2018 and served as the team’s captain in his final season in 2017-2018.

In 2018-2019, the 27 year old Sooite also served as an assistant coach of the Soo Greyhounds Under 15 AAA club, where he helped them win an NOHL U15 championship title.

Gary Roach
Assistant Coach

Roach was hired as one of the new assistant coaches during the 2020 offseason.

The former defenceman played four seasons in the Ontario Hockey League from 1991-1995, splitting time with the Soo Greyhounds and North Bay Centennials.

Roach, who was selected by in the 5th round (112th overall) by the New York Rangers in the 1993 National Hockey League Entry Draft, also helped the Soo Greyhounds win their second straight J. Ross Robertson Cup in 1992, followed by their first ever Memorial Cup title in 1993.

The 45 year old Sooite also served as an assistant coach with the Canadian International Junior Hockey League’s Batchewana Attack, where he helped lead them win a league and playoff title.

Jason Cook
Goalie Coach

Erik Christenson
Athletic Trainer/Physiotherapist

Trevor Zachary
General Manager

Trevor returns for his fourth season as General Manager of Hockey and Business Operations. Trevor has over 15 years of experience in Business Marketing, Branding, & Events. He played at the University of Windsor (1993-1996) as well as Lakehead University (1996-1997), and has Coaching experience at the High School and AAA Minor Hockey levels in Sault Ste. Marie.

Darren Smyl
President

Currently in his fourth season with the Thunderbirds ... Recipient of the Joe Drago Trophy for the NOJHL’s Executive of the Year in 2018 ... Became the fifth executive in franchise history to win the Joe Drago Trophy, joining Kevin Cain (2014), Albert Giommi (2012), Al Jones (2010 & 2008) and Sam Biasucci (2001) ... Cousin of former Vancouver Canucks captain Stan Smyl

Dominic Buonomo
Equipment Manager

Chris Carr
Equipment Assistant

Cole Clouthier
Game Day Operations

Matt Stefano
Communications & In-Game Announcer

Ann Varco
Game Night Staff

Maureen Greco
Game Night Staff

Marilyn Schmidt
Game Night Staff

Don Stares
Security

Anthony Miller
Social Media Manager

Bob Davies
Team Photographer

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