Friday, December  20, 2019


Vegas 3-Stars

#1 Rhett Bruckner

#2 Nikolas Sotioriu

#3 Joe Terrana

By Lee Samuels

Las Vegas – The WSHL Thunderbirds battled bravely and gave it their all but didn’t get rewarded here in the WSHL Showcase at the Las Vegas Ice Center. The tremendously physical Oklahoma City Blazers won 4-1 here in the final game of the holiday weekend. 

T-Birds goalie Rhett Bruckner, who has been awesome all season, made a number of tremendous saves. Tomas Urbanec, a top Vegas goal scorer all season, had the only hometown goal with assists from Christoffer Juvas and Jeremiah De Valk.

Nikolas Sotirou, 17, of Toronto had one of his best games for Las Vegas. After the game he said was on the ice “….trying to create opportunities.” He sure did all of that. 

And so did Joe Terrana of the Thunderbirds who battled hard in dark corners inside the South Rink and came out with pucks for his team.

But the overall grit and roughness from the Oklahoma City enforcers was too much, as was their goalie Joe Svensson – 6’1, 180 and with a 93.3% save percentage this season. Svensson was too much to overcome for the first-season T-Birds. He has a 12-1-1 record this season.

From the Blue Line – OC’s top defenseman #94 Trent Sheldon was tremendously physical, pinning T-Birds goal scorers against the boards. Sheldon is listed at 5’10, 165 but plays much bigger than his size. He’s a very special defenseman….There were a large number of college coaches/scouts at the rinkboards including UNLV Rebels head coach Anthony Greener….That was Erik Atchison of Las Vegas and the WHL Spokane Chiefs at the rinkboards watching this one…WSHL Ron White commissioner said over “115 college scouts were at our Showcase this week at the Ice Center.” …Also, more teams want to join the WSHL next season including a team from Tahoe and more teams from Canada…..

Las Vegas scoring

LV – Tomas Urbanec from Christoffer Juvas and Jeremiah DeValk

LV goalie – Rhett Bruckner