THUNDER BAY – SPORTS – The Thunder Bay Chill kick off their 17th Premier Development League (PDL) season on the road this Friday evening against WSA Winnipeg (0-3-0). The Chill are the only team in the 67 team league to have yet to play a game this season.
Thunder Bay has had its way with WSA Winnipeg for the most part since the latter started play in 2011 and take a 17-2-1 record into this weekend. Friday’s contest will be WSA Winnipeg’s home opener after losing their first three on the road being outscored 13-0. “Our goal is to come home with 6 points” said Giovanni Petraglia, who is returning for his second year as the Chill’s head coach. “WSA always gives us a hard time when we play them early in the season. I know this weekend won’t be any different, but our boys are ready and focused. I think we will be fine” he continued.
The Chill squad looks familiar in many ways as 14 players have returned from 2015. In addition, Anthony Putrus makes a return after a four year absence. During that time Putrus returned to school to obtain his Doctor in Chiropractor degree and spent one year playing in the Phillipines.
The Chill have also brought in a number of new faces that they hope will take them deeper into the playoffs than in 2015. Notable newcomers include Leyrielton De Moraes from Brazil, Christopher Jones from Wales, James Pengrigh from New Zealand, and Ross Lindsay from Scotland. The Chill are also very excited at having 11 home grown players from the Thunder Bay Chill youth development program. “This is what we have been working on over the last 10 years” said Chill Director of Operations Tony Colistro. “There is so much satisfaction in seeing the hard work begin to pay off as we start to see the players from our program start to make an impact on the PDL team,” he continued.
The Chill will have their home opener on Friday June 10th, when the Des Moines Menace (2-0-0) come to town for two games. Des Moines who won the Heartland Division the last two years is off to a great start winning both games played this season.