Bell rings for Soo Eagles

June 25, 2024

A high level hockey exodus from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario to the Michigan Sault continues. Hard working, hard edged 2007 birth year forward Coulson Bell has signed with the Soo Eagles of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League, Hockey News North has confirmed.

Bell was originally pursued by the NOJHL’s Soo Thunderbirds ahead of the 2024-2025 season but opted to instead try out for the cross-border Eagles. The fibrous forward, who plays bigger than his 5 foot 11, 165 pound frame, attended the Eagles recent tryout camp in Chicago. And it was there that Bell stood out to both Eagles head coach Jeremy Rebek and general manager Bruno Bragagnolo.

Coulson Bell signs with the Soo Eagles

Bragagnolo, as the Eagles’ GM, commented on the signing of Bell, who netted 13 goals, 22 assists, 35 points in 40 games for the Soo U18 Jr. Greyhounds of the Great North Under 18 Hockey League in 2023-2024.

“He competes really hard,” Bragagnolo relayed to Hockey News North in praise of Bell. “He is a tough kid who we have been keeping tabs on for a couple of years now. He attended our tryout camp last year and he impressed us then.”

Bragagnolo noted that Bell earned a spot on the 2024-2025 edition of the Eagles “through hard work and determination. We didn’t hand him anything. He came into our camp in Chicago and he didn’t take anything for granted. I think he knew that we liked him but again, we didn’t hand him anything. He earned a spot with the Soo Eagles for the coming season all on his own.”

The Eagles’ GM said Bell brings more to the table than hustle, determination and effort.

“Ya, you know, Coulson has pretty some good skill,” Bragagnolo offered in further praise of Bell. “He skates well and he handles the puck well and he has a good shot. Actually, he should use his shot more. For a kid who has another year of U18 eligibility remaining, we really like what he showed us (in Chicago) against older players. He might be a fourth line player to begin the upcoming season for us but you know, he could always move up and be one of our top nine forwards. We’ll see. He is still really young. All I know is that Jeremy (Rebek) as our head coach really likes the kid and so do I. He is a tough kid and he knows how to play the game. He just needs to stay a bit more focused out there.”

The signing of Bell follows that of the Eagles inking 2008 birth year defenseman Cole Wreggitt. Fellow Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario residents, Bell and Wreggitt were teammates with the U18 Jr. Greyhounds in ’23-24.

Besides that, the Eagles also hired away two coaches from their cross-border rival Thunderbirds earlier this off season — the aforementioned Jeremy Rebek as well as Joey Miller. Rebek is the Eagles’ new head coach and Miller is his assistant.

The cross-border rivalry between the Eagles and Thunderbirds has long been hostile and healthy, mixed in one. And, to be sure, it has been amped up during this off season.

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