If the bottom line is winning, then Tony Curtale is an undisputed winner.
Curtale has won no less than seven Robertson Cup championships, emblematic of supremacy in the North American Hockey League. Curtale won back to back Roberston Cup championships with the Springfield Jr. Blues in 1996 and 1997 and since then, in 10 seasons as coach-general manager of the Texas Tornado, he has been at the helm for five more national titles.
And Curtale continues to win.
While the 2012-13 season is less than a month old, Curtale has the Tornado off to a perfect start with a 5-0 record.
Tony, Tony, Tony, just wins, wins, wins.
BRETT IS BACK
Brett D'Andrea is back in Port Huron for a second season after beginning the 2012-13 campaign with Muskegon Lumberjacks of the United States Hockey League.
D'Andrea was in the Fighting Falcons lineup for a weekend sweep of the Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings and scored once in the two victories.
D'Andrea, a 1994 birth year centre, scored 17 goals in 39 games in helping Port Huron win the NAHL's North Division title in 2011-12.
A one-time Ontario Hockey League draft pick of Soo Greyhounds whose rights have since been traded to Windsor Spitfires, D'Andrea has a Division 1, National Collegiate Athletic Association commitment from Bowling Green Falcons for the 2013-14 season.
Johnstown Tomahawks goalie Chris Truehl, who played with Soo Eagles when they were a part of the Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League in 2011-12, is already attracting the attention of the Division 1, NCAA recruiters early this season.
For instance, sources tell me that Air Force Academy has already made a verbal overture to Truehl, who is a 1993 birth year and has another season of junior eligibility remaining after this one.
Thus far this season with Johnstown, Truehl has a record of 1-1-2 to go with a 2.93 goals against average and .890 save percentage.
I coached girls high school basketball in Sault Ste. Marie for 20 years and my favourite players were always the hard workers who gave their all at all times.
As a sportswriter, those types of players are my favourites.
As a junior hockey columnist, one of my favourite players is winger Connor Lyons, now with the NAHL's Michigan Warriors.
I watched a lot of Lyons last season when he was in the NOJHL with the Soo Eagles and I don't recall him every taking a shift off.
At any rate, Lyons scored his first NAHL goal on the weekend and it was a big one. It came late in the third period of the Warriors game at Johnstown on Saturday night and it forced overtime. Ironically, Lyons first NAHL goal came against his former Soo Eagles teammate, Chris Truehl.
The Warriors went on to edge the Tomhawks 3-2 in a shootout before a sold-out crowd at Cambria County War Memorial Arena in Johnstown.
The Warriors are off to a 2-5 start and have scored only 14 goals in seven games.
But coach Moe Mantha seems to have found himself another good goalie in the process.
Michael Pesendorfer, a late addition to the Warriors roster this season after fellow goalie Jordan Uhelski left to sign with Muskegon of the USHL, has been in net for both of Michigan's wins. The Novi, MI. product has a 2-2 record to go with a 2.35 GAA and .924 save percentage.
If second-year goalie Trevor Gorsuch can get himself straightened out, the Warriors should have themselves as a good a 1-2 tandem as there is in the NAHL North Division. Gorsuch has struggled to start the 2012-13 season with an 0-3 record, 5.24 GAA and .824 save percentage.