Three members of the Soo Thunderbirds will lead the staff which will oversee the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League squad that will compete at the Central Canada Cup Challenge, to be held November 14-16 at the MasterCard Centre in Toronto.
The 2014 Central Canada Cup Challenge will feature nine competing all-star teams, including one from the NOJHL, two apiece from the Central Canada Hockey League and Quebec Jr. Hockey League and four from the host Ontario Jr. Hockey League.
Heading up the NOJHL staff as director of operations are Thunderbirds general manager Kevin Cain and head coach Jordan Smith, who will serve in a similar capacity for Team NOJHL.
Joining Smith behind the bench as assistant coaches will be Ryan Maunu of the Thunderbirds and Sault Ste. Marie resident Don Gagnon, who is the head coach of the Blind River Beavers.
Rounding out the staff as athletic trainers are Lisa Parise of the Sudbury Nickel Barons and Carla Vine of the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners.
All of the nine participating teams at the Central Canada Cup Challenge will play two round-robin games.
After round-robin competition, the teams will be rated on their overall performance and be re-seeded for the playoff round with each team vying for the CCCC championship.
“The NOJHL is pleased to once again be competing in this high-profile event that will feature some of the premier players from our league going up against some of the elite talent from the CCHL, QJHL and OJHL,” noted NOJHL commissioner Rob Mazzuca.
The players who will comprise the NOJHL roster for the CCCC will be selected by Cain, Smith, Maunu and Gagnon.
The Team NOJHL roster is expected to be finalized by the end of October.
PHOTO: Soo Thunderbirds GM Kevin Cain will lead Team NOJHL into the Central Canada Cup Challenge.