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Thunderbirds Announce 2017-18 Opening Day Roster

Oct 6, 2017
Springfield, MA - The Springfield Thunderbirds today announced their Opening Day roster for their season opening game on Saturday against the Providence Bruins.
 
In total, the Thunderbirds return 12 players from the 2016-17 season. Among those returners are four of Springfield's top six point producers from a season ago, including leading scorer Chase Balisy(17g+28a=45 pts) and now second-year forwards Anthony Greco (31 pts), Dryden Hunt (31 pts), andJayce Hawryluk (26 pts).
 
In addition, the Thunderbirds have also brought in a pair of AHL veterans in Curtis Valk and Alex Grenier, who combined for 33 goals and 58 assists with the Utica Comets a season ago.
 
On defense, the Thunderbirds return six skaters who each spent extended time with the club a year ago, led by 6-foot-4 inch Josh Brown (13 pts, 96 PIMs).
 
The newest faces will be the pair between the pipes for head coach Geordie Kinnear. At 27 years of age and the elder statesmen on the Thunderbirds roster, Harri Sateri returns to the AHL after spending his last three professional seasons in the KHL with Podolsk Vityaz. The native of Toijala, Finland previously spent four seasons with the Worcester Sharks in the AHL from 2010-14.
 
Sharing goaltending duties with Sateri is 20-year-old Sam Montembeault. A third-round pick of the Florida Panthers in the 2015 NHL Draft, Montembeault is coming off a season in which he finished second in the QMJHL with a 2.40 goals-against average with the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada. The rookie had a 28-9-1 record and recorded a league-high six shutouts.
 
The full Thunderbirds Opening Day roster can be seen below. Returning players are marked in bold.Springfield opens its season with a 7:05 p.m. ET matchup on Saturday at the Dunkin' Donuts Center against the Providence Bruins. It is the first of 14 matchups between the division rivals during the 2017-18 season. Coverage can be heard on NewsRadio 560 WHYN beginning at 6:50 p.m.
 

Forwards:

#8 Jayce Hawryluk
#13 Chase Balisy
#16 Matt Buckles
#18 Curtis Valk
#24 Ryan Horvat
#25 Anthony Greco
#28 Alex Grenier
#29 Dryden Hunt
#38 Maxim Mamin
#41 Juho Lammikko
#45 Henrik Haapala
#48 Mikkel Aagaard
#51 Francois Beauchemin
#53 Blaine Byron
 

Defensemen:

#3 Josh Brown
#5 Mike Downing
#7 Reece Scarlett
#20 Eddie Wittchow
#27 Thomas Schemitsch
#44 Matt MacKenzie
 

Goaltenders:

#33 Samuel Montembeault
#35 Harri Sateri
 
The Thunderbirds open their 2017-18 home ice schedule on Saturday, Oct. 14 for a matchup with the rival Hartford Wolf Pack. Ticket memberships, including season tickets, are on sale now, starting at just $12 per game. Thunderbirds Full Season Ticket Members receive the most benefits, including a refillable collector’s mug and a commemorative jersey. For more information or to order now, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625) or visit www.SpringfieldThunderbirds.com.
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