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47 in 24 series: Cincinnati Thunder

August 19, 2017
The 47 in 24 series will feature an in-depth look into all 47 teams in the NA3HL for the 2017-18 season, with new teams being highlighted daily, leading all the way up until the start of the regular season. 47 in 24 goes in-depth into each NA3HL team and will include interviews with all 47 head coaches in the NA3HL, as they provide fans with their expectations and outlook for the 2017-18 season, including taking a look at their potential roster and their strengths as a team for the upcoming season. It will also take a look back on the 2016-17 season and how each team fared and what they accomplished.  Best of all, 47 in 24 will provide the fans of the NA3HL with an inside look at their favorite team and what to expect.
 
Cincinnati Thunder
2016-17 Record: 18-25-4, 40 pts.
2017 Playoffs:  Lost Midwest Division semi-finals to St Louis Jr Blues, 2 games to 0
Head Coach: Ryan Colville
2017-18 Division:  Midwest
 
The Cincinnati Thunder began as the Queen City Steam in 2007, then re-branded as the Cincinnati Swords in 2013. The Swords were sold to Ryan & Jim Colville in 2014, and renamed the Thunder to begin the 2015 season. 
 
The Thunder has been steadily climbing the charts in wins and in the standings. With 18 wins this season, the team finished fourth in the Midwest Division. They lost – for the second year in a row - to the St Louis Jr Blues in the Division Semi-Finals. 
 
Coach Ryan Colville was happy with the way the season turned out – “we’ve improved on wins & points, and made playoffs for the second year in a row. Last year was something to build off of.”
 
Ryan Colville comes back for his third full season with the Cincinnati Thunder, after working and playing across the continent and in many different leagues. Hailing from Canada, Colville played three seasons of junior hockey and four in the NCAA at St. Lawrence University. In 2006, he began his coaching career as a Video Coach for the Columbus Blue Jackets in the NHL. In 2008, he was hired as the Head Video Coach for the LA Kings, where he stayed until 2015, winning a Stanley Cup in 2012. After working so many years in front of a computer screen, Ryan Colville was eager to get behind the bench when the team became available. 
 
This season, Colville and his Thunder plan to keep that momentum going, and continue to build off the successes of the last few seasons. “We’ve improved steadily the last three seasons. We need to keep making those little improvements and build on wins and points and hopefully make playoffs again,” said Coach Colville. 
 
In addition to building and improving as a team, the Thunder capitalizes on the NA3HL as a developmental league, and looks for players that fit in with the core group of returners. Colville stated; “we want the players to want to work hard and are motivated to move forward.”
 
With development on the top of the to do list, Colville and his team look forward to league wide events such as the Top Prospects Tournament and the NA3HL Showcase as “quite the spectacle.” In terms of their success, Colville reveals that “they absolutely work” and that they are a large part of the league’s popularity.
 
“We are a developmental league, and there’s no other league we’d rather be a part of - bringing all the teams to one spot and giving them the opportunities to be seen be so many scouts is incredible.” 
 
Even though the Thunder has moved around the last few years, they look forward to reestablishing their contacts with different community service organizations and getting their players involved. In the past, they have visited different hospitals and worked with the Hockey Fights Cancer program, and players often volunteer their time and work with youth hockey organizations around the area. 
 
Coach Colville describes his team as “structured and hard working,” and hopes their record will reflect their unforgiving work, and their steady climb to the top will continue this season.
 
Next up in the 47 in 24 series: College Station Spirit
 
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