NORTHERN ONTARIO JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE
Release Date: Friday, Feb. 8, 2013
NOJHL returns to Espanola tonight
SUDBURY – It has been a decade since Espanola has hosted a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League game, but all that changes this evening as the NOJHL returns to the community along the Spanish River with a neutral site contest between the North Bay Trappers and Blind River Beavers. Game time is 7:30 p.m. at the Espanola Regional Recreation Complex.
The event will help kick-off their annual Winter Carnival weekend with Espanola Mayor Mike Lehoux expected to be on hand to perform the ceremonial face-off to commence the festivities.
Espanola last had a NOJHL franchise 10 years ago as the Eagles were one of seven clubs in the league.
They were a member for five seasons from 1998-99 through 2002-03.
Of note, the Espanola Eagles were also an original member of the NOJHL when the league first started back in 1962.
That club finished second in the standings with a 25-14-1 regular season record before going to capture the first-ever NOJHL championship led by league scoring champion Ron Allain and coach of the year Red McCarthy.
The NOJHL coach of the year trophy is now named after the legendary bench boss with the winner each season receiving the Mirl ‘Red’ McCarthy Memorial Trophy.
Espanola would go on to defeat North Bay for the NOJHL title. They would advance all the way to Eastern Canada Memorial Cup final before falling to a strong Niagara Falls Flyers side that featured the likes of future NHLers Gary Dornhoefer, Terry Crisp, Dow Awrey and Bill Goldsworthy.
Tickets for tonight’s game in Espanola between North Bay and Blind River are only $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and students while children are $5.