The Greater Sudbury Cubs are off to a heckuva start to the 2023-24 season.
The team has set a modern-day franchise record by winning its first six wins and claiming first place in the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League’s West Conference and first place in the NOJHL with 12 points.
The Cubs defeated French River Rapids 9-3 and Espanola Paper Kings 9-2 last week on home ice.
Not only is the teaming generating wins, they’re generating goals. The Cubs boast having three of the league’s top four scorers on its roster: Oliver Smith and Nolan Newton with 16 points each and Marshall McCharles with 14 points. Smith and Newton are draft selections of the Barrie Colts, while Marshall McCharles is drafted by the Sudbury Wolves.
The Cubs are averaging a league-high seven goals per game while allowing an average of three goals against.
The Cubs lead the league with the best power play at 40.9-per-cent success rate and are third best in the league in penalty killing at 90 per cent.
Meanwhile, Hudson Chitaroni, a third-round selection of the Wolves, sits in third place in NOJHL rookie scoring with 10 points in his first five games.
“The young 16-year-old superstar is showing why he was the top ranked player out of the North last season and his offensive skills and vision are frankly off the charts,” the team enthused in a news release.
This week, Chitaroni was selected as the NOJHL First Star of the Week after recording his first career NOJHL hat trick against French River and then adding two goals and two assists against Espanola Kings.
This week, the Cubs host the Elliot Lake Viking for a Thursday night tilt at Countryside Arena in the South End. The Vikings are currently sitting in last place in the West Division with three points.
Game time is 7:05 p.m. and parking is free.
Then on Friday night, the Cubs host the French River Rapids at Centennial Arena in Hanmer. Friday’s game will also mark the honouring of the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation. Orange t-shirts will be provided to the first 100 adults attending Friday’s game courtesy of Creator’s Choice in Wahnipatae First Nation.
Game time on Friday night in Hanmer is 7:05 p.m.
Admission tickets for both games are available at the door and credit card and debit cards are now acceptable. Tickers are a$15 for adults and $10 for juniors and seniors. Children 12 and under are $5.