carolina thunderbirds
He holds the all-time postseason record for goals, 27, and points, 45. [9] The team finished the season 23–31–2 with 48 points, enough for the fourth seed in the playoffs. The team played in the Atlantic Coast Hockey League from 1981 to 1987, the All-American Hockey League during 1987–88 and finally moved into the newly created East Coast Hockey League in 1988. [2], In August 2016,[3] the Federal Hockey League (FHL) announced that multiple FHL franchise owner Barry Soskin would place an expansion team in Winston-Salem for the 2017–18 FHL season. Game four, also in Greensboro, went into double overtime time with the Monarchs winning. Andre Niec was named Coach of the Year after leading the Thunderbirds to a record breaking season with the most wins (49), most points (149), and the best point percentage (.856) in league history. After retiring he served as the head coach for the Thunderbirds from 1987 to 1989. [13] After losing the first two games by a combined score of 14–2 in Johnstown, the Thunderbirds won the next three games to take a series lead 3–2, putting the Thunderbirds one win away from the title. Game two had a combined 186 penalty minutes between the teams. The team defeated the Nashville Knights in five games to reach the finals. Torchetti also was named the AAHL MVP after the season. [5] After three of the seven teams had folded during the season, the league decided to end early and set the playoffs with the four remaining teams by geographical area to save on travel expenses. The team was awarded the Henry Brabham Cup trophy, given regular season champions. In the finals, against the Erie Golden Blades, the Thunderbirds lost the championship in five games. [10] On October 28, 1988 the Thunderbirds played at the Johnstown Chiefs in the first game in ECHL history. Josh Pietrantonio became the first player in team history to earned 100 points as a Thunderbird in the game. Michael Bunn also lead the league in game winning goals with eight. Huvarova was reportedly the first European woman to coach a men's professional team. The Carolina Thunderbirds were a Minor Professional hockey team based in Winston-Salem, NC playing in the Atlantic Coast Hockey League from 1981 to 1987. Details for CAROLINA THUNDERBIRDS. [19], For the team that played from 1981 to 1992, see, All-time (including regular season & postseason), The FHL awards 3 points for a regulation time win, 2 points for an overtime win, and 1 point for an overtime or shootout loss, CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (, "Federal Hockey League games to be played at Annex", "FHL Formally Approves Expansion to Winston-Salem, NC - Carolina Thunderbirds", "THUNDERBIRDS NAME ANDRE NIEC HEAD COACH", "Thunderbirds Sellout Home Opener, Down Knights 3-2 - Carolina Thunderbirds", "Carolina Thunderbirds coach suspended for actions after Sunday's game", "Coach takes a swing at a referee with a hockey stick after disagreeing with a call", "THUNDERBIRDS STATEMENT REGARDING WEEKEND IN PORT HURON", "Niec suspended for six games by Federal Hockey League", "Thunderbirds Testing New Rule To Begin Games With A Shootout - Carolina Thunderbirds", "FHL team tweaks OT rules, will hold shootout before home games", "Thunderbirds Suspend Experimental Shootout Indefinitely - Official Site of the Federal Hockey League", "Blackjack Carolina wins 21st straight game", "Making History: Thunderbirds all alone in record books with 22nd stright win", "Scott Brand, the Thunderbirds general manager, resigns; Jimmy Milliken named as his replacement", "Carolina Thunderbirds' president Jimmy Milliken resigns",, CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Games played: Josh Pietrantonio, Michael Bunn, Ray Boudiette, Jan Salak, Stanislav Vlasov & Christian Pavlas, 8, Penalty minutes: Dominik Fejt, 200 (2018–19), Penalty minutes: Josh Pietrantonio, 18 (2019), This page was last edited on 8 August 2020, at 18:07. Head coach Andre Niec signed a contract for the final game and scored a hat trick in a 7–1 win over the Dashers. Their home games are played at the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds Annex. After defeating the Virginia Lancers, they met the Blades again in the 1985 finals with the Thunderbirds defeating them in six games to win their second league championship. Chris McSorley was hired to replace Brendon Watson as head coach before the season, McSorley's first experience as head coach. Get an email notification whenever someone contributes to the discussion. The Salem Raiders defeated the Thunderbirds in five games in the playoffs. [18] Len Soccio, Joe Ferras and Trent Kaese all finished in the top four of the league scoring, while goaltenders Paul Cohen and Kenton Rein both finished the season in the top five for goals against average (GAA) in the league. WINSTON SALEM, Don't Threaten. Use the 'Report' link on [20] Soccio was the ECHL playoffs scoring leader with 17 points. Team Facts. PROFESSION HOCKEY TEAM, WINSTON SALEM, NC 27102. In the 1985–86 season, the team had a 49–14–0 record. The series returned to Winston-Salem, but the Thunderbirds lost game five and the championship four-games-to-one. In 1987, the ACHL merged into the All-American Hockey League (AAHL). [18], In 2018, the FHL began calling itself the Federal Prospects Hockey League (FPHL) and fully rebranded before the 2019–20 season. The Thunderbirds lost game one at the Chiefs 8–1 as the Chiefs scored four power play goals during the game. The following 1990–91 season, the league was aligned to include two separate divisions, East and West. The Thunderbirds were placed in the West Division, posted a record of 20–41–3 and failed to make the playoffs for the first time. The Thunderbirds won the first ever ECHL championship and were awarded the Riley Cup for the 1988–89 ECHL season. Michel Lanouette — Played with Thunderbirds from 1982 to 1989 and again during the 1990–91 season. He was subsequently suspended by the league again for six games (reduced to four), with personal trainer Karolina Huvarova taking over in the interim. Huglen was unable to get the same results and after a poor 12–16 record to start the season, including 11 straight losses, he was replaced by another former Thunderbird player, Pierre Hamel. After winning three championships in four years, Dudley moved up to become the head coach of the Flint Spirits in the International Hockey League and former Thunderbird player Mark Huglen was hired as the new coach. The originally scheduled game five in Johnstown became game four and the Thunderbirds hosted game five back at home. He won the ACHL MVP Award for the 1985–86 season. [1] Bill Coffey sold the team to minority owner John Baker during the season. Dave Watson, who only played in nine games during the season, played in his last playoffs as he would retire after the season. One of only two players to play on all five playoffs championship teams with the Thunderbirds. racist or sexually-oriented language. Dudley proposed that he would stay with the team and try to sell the franchise for Gusky and if that did not work, he would buy the team himself. Don't Threaten. In the inaugural ECHL championships, the Thunderbirds faced the Johnstown Chiefs. The team also began playing at the new Winston-Salem Fairgrounds Annex after the old Winston-Salem Memorial Coliseum was demolished. The team won eight league awards for the season. Brian Carroll — Played in 308 games for the Thunderbirds from their inaugural season in 1981 until 1986. Seasons played: Randy Irving, 9 (1981–82 season to 1989–90 season), Playoff seasons played: Randy Irving, 8 (1982–1986, 1988–1990 playoffs), Consecutive playoff seasons: Brian Carroll, 5 (1982–1986 playoffs); Randy Irving, 5 (1982–1986 playoffs); and, Postseason Championships as a player: Randy Irving and Michel Lanouette, 5 (1983, 1985, and 1986 ACHL champions; 1988 AAHL champions; 1989 ECHL champions), Penalty minutes: Brian Gustafson, 354 (1983–84), Penalty minutes: Steve Plaskon, 132 (1989), This page was last edited on 14 April 2020, at 16:28. The new franchise in Winston-Salem was awarded to a Cincinnati group headed by businessman Dave Gusky in 1981. Notifications from this discussion will be disabled. [14] The Chiefs' Tom Sasso scored two shorthand goals[15] to help his team evened the series in game six by defeating the Thunderbirds 7–4, a game that included several fights. John Torchetti scored the team's only power play goal (during game four) and Vollhoffer had two of the team's three short-handed goals. Irving retired after the season as the team leader in seasons with the team, all-time games played and all-time postseason assists, and as one of the only two players with the Thunderbirds to play in all five playoffs championships. Watson and Michel Lanouette earned first team selections to the ACHL All-Star team, while Brian Carroll and Randy Irving had second team selections for their performances. The team played in the Atlantic Coast Hockey League from 1981 to 1987, the All-American Hockey League during 1987–88 and finally moved into the newly created East Coast Hockey League in 1988.[1]. [21] In the playoffs, the Thunderbirds lost to the Richmond Renegades in the first round in five games. During the finals series, the Thunderbirds were led by Troy Vollhoffer with four goals, Dave Doucette and Len Soccio with five assists each, while Soccio also lead the team with seven points. Karel Drahorad also lead the FHL in goals among defensemen during the season. The Thunderbirds went on to finish second in the standings with a 34–15–0 record, 68 points, and seven points behind the first place Virginia Lancers. Joe Curran — A three-time champion with the Thunderbirds who played 178 games with the team from 1984 to 1988. The Carolina Thunderbirds are a minor league professional hockey team located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and play in the Federal Prospects Hockey League. During the series, the ice at Winston-Salem Coliseum melted prior to game four because a compressor shut down during the night. In the 1986 finals, the Thunderbirds and Blades faced off for the third time, with the Thunderbirds winning in five games to become the only team to win consecutive ACHL championships. As of 2018[update], three Thunderbirds' players still held the top three spots for the ECHL record for the most penalty minutes in a finals series from that year; Steve Plaskon with 95, Michel Lanouette with 68 and Bill Huard with 58.


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