Lots of news out of Glens Falls as the Thunder prepares to open training camp tomorrow:
–Five players have been invited to training camp:
Caleb Cameron: 24-year-old forward attending his first professional camp after four years at R.I.T.
Jack Ceglarski: forward who made his pro debut with the Indy Fuel after finishing his senior year at SUNY Geneseo, appearing in 5 games and going scoreless.
Evan Neugold: center who is entering his second pro season after splitting last season in the SPHL with Columbus and Knoxville.
Nick Niedert: veteran journeyman goaltender who spent last season with Danbury in the FHL. Since turning pro in 2004, he has played with 25 different teams in 8 different leagues. (If I counted right. There were a few repeats on his resume.)
Mark Petaccio: second year pro forward who spent last season with four different teams after playing one year collegiately in Canada.
The first official player assignment came Sunday, as goaltender Nic Riopel was reassigned by Tampa Bay to the Thunder. Riopel is under an AHL contract with Syracuse, and will be entering his second season as the official #3 goaltender on the Crunch depth chart. The 28-year-old is no stranger to Glens Falls–he started his pro career with the Adirondack Phantoms in the 2009-10 season, making 10 appearances in net and going 4-6-0 with a 3.35 GAA and .893 save percentage. The former Flyer 5th rounder would appear in 11 games for the Phantoms in 2010-11, but spent a majority of the season in ECHL Greenville. After spending two seasons overseas, he returned to North America with Norfolk and Rapid City in 2015-16 before spending all of last season with Kalamazoo. In 32 games for the Wings Riopel went 18-12-1 with a 3.13 GAA and .899 save percentage.
Four Thunder players–Tim Boyle, Pierre-Luc Mercier, Desmond Bergin, and Tim Harrison–are currently in Binghamton’s training camp. Terrence Wallin was briefly at Crunch camp, but was released before Syracuse began their preseason slate.
For those who missed it…I have made a few guest appearances over on Raw Charge, the Tampa Bay SB Nation blog, educating Tampa/Syracuse fans about their unofficial affiliation:
-Back in August, a brief history of hockey in Glens Falls;
-Over the weekend, a two part series on the Thunder forwards and defensemen.
Finally, a sad note…
Just 15 days after he was honored by having the Cool Insuring Arena press box named for him, Dave Strader lost his battle with cancer earlier today. A native of Glens Falls, Strader was the original voice of the Adirondack Red Wings in the late 1970s/early 1980s, then later would announce games for several NHL teams before joining NBC. He was most recently the voice of the Dallas Stars before his diagnosis.