Northern boys of the NOJHL


Randy Russon
By
April 9, 2021

Teams in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League are able to recruit players from all over Canada, not to mention the United States. But homegrown players from northern Ontario remain popular among NOJHL teams.

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Brick house in Blind River


Randy Russon
By
April 7, 2021

Beavers coach-general manager Kyle Brick

The most productive coach in franchise history is returning to the Blind River Beavers of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League for a sixth season, Hockey News North has confirmed.

Kyle Brick, who will turn 35 years of age later this month, has re-upped with the Beavers as coach and general manager for the 2021-2022 season as per team president Robert Morningstar.

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Splash on the Beaver dam


Randy Russon
By
April 5, 2021

Blind River Beavers forward Nick Jameus, in 2020-2021 action against the Soo Thunderbirds. (photo by Bob Davies.)

A normal regular season in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League is 56 games for each of its teams.

Well, in what was an abnormal, offbeat 2020-2021 season relative to COVID-19, it nonetheless — for example — led to the Blind River Beavers being able to play 21 games against two cohort opponents.

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Summer tournament hockey


Randy Russon
By
April 1, 2021

Dependent on factors related to COVID-19 and a return to more controllable numbers, summer tournament hockey may be more prevalent this year given the low total of games that were played at the junior and under 18 levels during the 2020-2021 season.

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Seguin heading to school


Randy Russon
By
March 31, 2021

Derek Seguin

Graduated Timmins Rock gunslinger Derek Seguin is headed to North Bay to play Ontario university hockey for the Nipissing Lakers next season.

Seguin’s family advisor, Adrian Gedye of Pinnacle Hockey Management, confirmed the commitment of his client to Hockey News North.

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NOJHL news, views, dues


Randy Russon
By
March 30, 2021

As a writer who writes up more than one team in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League, here are a number of notations as we move on from the 2020-2021 abbreviation of a season to what we can have faith in at what could lie ahead at some point.

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Beavers set in net with Disano


Randy Russon
By
March 29, 2021

Gavin Disano of the Blind River Beavers, in season ending action against the Soo Thunderbirds. (photo by Bob Davies)

He came through when called upon and earned the no. 1 job.

And along the way, Gavin Disano withstood baptism by fire as a young rookie goalie with the Blind River Beavers of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League.

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T-Birds retain tidy tradition


Randy Russon
By
March 28, 2021

Soo Thunderbirds forward Cooper Smyl, in close on Blind River Beavers goalie Gavin Disano, in NOJHL action from today. (photo by Bob Davies)

It was a season like no other, all due to COVID-19 and the restrictions and modifications that resulted from it. Among the nine Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League teams that saw action this 2020-2021 season, the Soo Thunderbirds were more fortunate than most as they got to play in 21 games. And along the way, the Thunderbirds maintained a tidy tradition of not having had a losing record since coming into existence as a member of the modern day NOJHL in 1999.

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NOJHL scores ‘E’ for effort


Randy Russon
By
March 27, 2021

French River Rapids and Espanola Express played each other eight times this NOJHL season with each team winning four games. (photo by Chelsea Solomon)

It stick handled around the COVID-19 opponent with a careful game plan and by following all the rules.

And while not all teams were able to finish what they started, the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League stared down adversity and came away with an ‘E’ for effort in an abbreviated 2020-2021 season.

…[read more]

NOJHL team has summer plans


Randy Russon
By
March 25, 2021

The coach and general manager of the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League intends to ice a summer team that will compete in showcase tournaments, Hockey News North has confirmed.

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Soo Eagles got game


Randy Russon
By
March 24, 2021

A closed international border prevented the Soo Eagles from competing within the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League this season.

But the Michigan-based Eagles — the only American team in the 12-member NOJHL — still found a way to play a number of games over the past several months.

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Beavers take down the Birds


Randy Russon
By
March 21, 2021

Justin Mauro

COVID-19 cohort competition and a rabid rivalry is alive and well in the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League series between the Blind River Beavers and Soo Thunderbirds.

Playing at home today, the Beavers took down the Thunderbirds by a decisive 8-3 score to even the marathon, season-long, cohort series between the fiery foes at seven games apiece. It was the second straight home ice win by Blind River over the Soo to cap a two games in two days, weekend matinee series.

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Soo boys spark Blind River


Randy Russon
By
March 21, 2021

Blind River Beavers goalie Gavin Disano makes one of 48 saves in Saturday’s win over the Soo Thunderbirds.

Devin Mauro netted the tying tally in the third period, then sealed the deal in the shootout, and fellow Sault Ste. Marie product Gavin Disano made 48 saves as Blind River Beavers edged the visiting Soo Thunderbirds  5-4 in another cohort contest between the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League rivals on Saturday night.

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Beavers come up short


Randy Russon
By
March 19, 2021

Nick Jameus of the Blind River Beavers sets up in front of Soo Thunderbirds goalie Alex Bugeja in NOJHL action from Thursday. (photo by Bob Davies.)

It was a spirited effort by a team that played with just two of its regular defensemen due to league suspension.

But despite numerous glorious scoring opportunities, the visiting Blind River Beavers came up short in yet another cohort match with the Soo Thunderbirds in Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League action on Thursday.

…[read more]

Crunch and Rock carry on


Randy Russon
By
March 15, 2021

Defensemen Travis Szafron (15) and Keaston Blais (24) of the Cochrane Crunch get in position in front of goalie Michael Nickolau to defend against Timmins Rock forward Tyler Schwindt (44) in NOJHL action from the weekend. (photo by Emily Martin)

Three games in as many days was the workload as Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League cohort rivals Cochrane Crunch and Timmins Rock faced off on the weekend.

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NOJHL deserved better


Randy Russon
By
March 15, 2021

Cameron Walker

It has followed all the rules — and then some — relative to COVID-19. Fifty three of its scheduled 58 games for this season have been played thus far and the only ones that were postponed were of the precautionary measure.

Still, the 12-member Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League is down to four active teams and is poised to halt the 2020-2021 season at the end of this month when Blind River Beavers v. Soo Thunderbirds and Cochrane Crunch v. Timmins Rock finish their respective, current cohort schedule.

The NOJHL deserved better. And, as just one example, so did the up and coming Espanola Express.

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Stevenson still in the game


Randy Russon
By
March 11, 2021

Jeremy Stevenson

His hockey playing career ended a dozen years ago at age 34. But now, at 46 years of age and at his playing size and weight of 6-foot-1, 215 pounds, Jeremy Stevenson still looks fit and trim enough to be patrolling the left wing.

A first round pick of the Cornwall Royals in 1990 who would finish his Ontario Hockey League career with the Soo Greyhounds, Stevenson defied the odds to play in 228 National Hockey League games after being an 11th round pick of the Anaheim Ducks in 1994.

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Seven up for Birds, Beavers


Randy Russon
By
March 11, 2021

Soo Thunderbirds and Blind River Beavers will take the COVID-19 affected Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League season to a conclusive seven game series between the cohort rivals, Hockey News North has confirmed.

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Four cohorts on NOJHL slate


Randy Russon
By
March 9, 2021

Soo Thunderbirds and Blind River Beavers, in recent NOJHL action.

Cochrane Crunch and Timmins Rock have drawn up a schedule of 10 games between each other over the next 20 days.

And Blind River Beavers and Soo Thunderbirds are working on their next slate of games as cohort opponents, which will likely be next week.

…[read more]

Disano stands tall for BR


Randy Russon
By
March 8, 2021

Gavin Disano of the Blind River Beavers. (photo by Bob Davies)

At 5-foot-9, 185 pounds, Gavin Disano is on the short side when it comes to the preferences of Ontario Hockey League scouts and American college recruiters who evaluate goalies. But if a goalie can stop the puck and win games, how much does size really matter?

To be sure, Disano who is a 2003 birth year rookie with the Blind River Beavers of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League, has been standing tall between the pipes.

…[read more]

Beavers take broom to Birds


Randy Russon
By
March 7, 2021

Staring adversity straight in the chops, Blind River Beavers pulled out a stunning 5-4 victory over the Soo Thunderbirds today to complete a weekend sweep of their Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League cohort rivals.

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Beavers overcome T-Birds


Randy Russon
By
March 6, 2021

Goalie Gavin Disano, in action for the Blind River Beavers.

Enough is enough.

Blind River Beavers halted a five game win-less streak against the Soo Thunderbirds today with a 4-1 victory.

Playing at home, the Beavers scored two power play goals and rode the good goal-tending of rookie Gavin Disano to end a skid in which Blind River had gone 0-4-1 over its previous five games against the Soo.

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NOJHL boss was OHL star


Randy Russon
By
March 6, 2021

The ’81-82 Sudbury Wolves with Rob Mazzuca (front row) as team captain

These days, Rob Mazzuca is well known as the likeable, respectable commissioner of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League.

With deep northern Ontario roots, Mazzuca — who has been the league’s commander in chief since 2011 — has brought a thorough, thoughtful, professional approach to his position and to the NOJHL itself.

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Crunch and Rock in cohort


Randy Russon
By
March 4, 2021

They figure to be familiar and formidable foes by facing off 10 times in a 20 day frame.

As Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League cohort opponents, the Cochrane Crunch and Timmins Rock are slated to play 10 games against each other between March 10 and March 30.

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Birds have Beavers baffled


Randy Russon
By
March 3, 2021

Soo Thunderbirds took a 5-3 win from the Blind River Beavers on Tuesday. (photo by Bob Davies)

Soo Thunderbirds have the Blind River Beavers number as of late.

Since the 2021 portion of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League season began about a week ago, the Thunderbirds have taken four straight games from the Beavers with Blind River’s only point coming in a shootout loss.

…[read more]

NOJHL a game at a time


Randy Russon
By
March 1, 2021

Left to right, Nick Jameus, Wyatt Courchaine and Teegan Dumont of the Blind River Beavers and Ethan Novello of the Soo Thunderbirds, in NOJHL action from last week. (photo by Bob Davies)

Five for seven. As in, of the seven games that the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League had scheduled for last week as it returned to play from COVID-19 hiatus, five of them went into the books.

Thus, the NOJHL is maintaining a good average of completion of scheduled matches. In all, when totaling the 51 slated games to date — November and December of 2020 and February of 2021 — 46 have gone on as scheduled.

…[read more]