|League:||Northern Ontario Junior A/|
North of Superior Junior B
|Operated:||1987-1990 (Junior "A")|
2003-2004 (Junior "B")
|Home Arena:||Thessalon Arena|
|Colors:||Black, Orange, and White|
The Thessalon Flyers were a Tier II Junior "A" ice hockey team from Thessalon, Ontario, Canada. This defunct hockey team was a part of the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League and also the North of Superior Junior B Hockey League.
History[edit | edit source]
The Flyers played in 3 seasons in the NOJHL. The addition of the Flyers helped break the league from an interlocking schedule with the OHA Jr. "A" League, which otherwise would have probably fatally crippled the NOJHL.
In 1990, the Flyers inexplicably folded.
In 2003-04, the Flyers came back and entered the NSHL under owner Domenic Sacco, but that season ended up being the last in NSHL history. The Flyers were good enough to make the finals, but lost out the defending champion Wawa Travellers. After the season, the Flyers and the Aguasabon River Rats left the league, leaving the Wawa Travellers and the Marathon Renegades and the league to fold. They were coached by Vic Duguay (fired before season started), Ryan Leonard (asst. coach/head coach), Roy Iachetta Sr. (asst. coach), Chad Vresk (asst. coach) and Jeff Williamson (trainer). The Flyers only ever season in the NSHL saw them led in scoring by Lucas Bedell with 48 points in 17 games played, this was good for the league lead.
Controversy[edit | edit source]
With the Soo Greyhounds and Soo Thunderbirds playing out of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Sault business man Domenic Sacco knew that surrounding communities would jump at the chance of seeing high-calibre hockey in their hometowns on a regular basis. Thus the reintroduction of the Thessalon Flyers in the small farming community of Thessalon, Ontario. With a competitive talent pool being sought by teams such as the Thunderbirds and nearby Soo Indians and Blind River Beavers, Sacco knew that drawing a competitive team would be difficult. Offering to cover transportation costs to and from surrounding areas, players from all over the north shore of Lake Huron combined to make the 2003-2004 Thessalon Flyers. Of these players included former Great North Midget League players Lucas Bedell and Thessalon native Jason Bird. Bedell opted for the Junior 'B' calibre hockey of Thessalon over the Junior 'A' Tier II hockey of hometown Sault Ste. Marie or nearby Blind River merely for the education package offered by Sacco. Failing to pay for ice fees in Thessalon, coupled with failed sponsorhip deals, left the coffers of the team nearly empty, and players promised packages, such as Bedell, left town, leaving the team not nearly as competitive as originally anticipated. Despite this setback, the Flyers went on to the NSHL final, losing four games to one to the Wawa Travellers. Players upset with the lack of team travel for the first two games of the series in Wawa (which saw the return of several key players including Bedell who netted 2 G and 5 A in 2 GP) sent management a message by refusing to report to practice the following week and neglected to show up for the next two games of the final series resulting in forfeiture of the title, and a hefty suspension levied on team owner and general manager Sacco by the Northern Ontario Hockey Association. The team has yet to return to Thessalon, as a league to play in no longer exists.
Season-by-Season Results[edit | edit source]
|2003-04||24||9||14||-||1||114||139||19||3rd NSHL||Lost Final|
|This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Thessalon Flyers. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Ice Hockey Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License 3.0 (Unported) (CC-BY-SA).|