Evansville's Professional Hockey Team

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Latest News

Thunderbolts Down But Not Out after 7-2 Loss to Peoria

Evansville, In.:  The Thunderbolts were able to rally in the first round after dropping the first game of the series and will now look to do so again in this second round series following a 7-2 loss to the Peoria Rivermen at Ford Center on Wednesday night, with do-or-die game two on Friday night in Peoria.

Although Peoria opened the scoring with a Jordan Ernst goal at 7:32 of the first period, the Thunderbolts played well in long stretches and were only outshot 10-8.  The second period proved to be the big difference, beginning with an early Cale List goal at 1:41 to make it 2-0, and the Thunderbolts could not recover after coming up short on several power play chances to shorten the deficit.  Seconds after Evansville’s final power play of the second period ended, Tristan Trudel scored at 18:03 to make it a 3-0 game.  Just after that, Jacob Kamps was ejected following a major penalty for charging, with another goal being scored at 19:33 on the ensuing power play, as Mitchell McPherson made it 4-0 Peoria. 

The Thunderbolts had a much more solid third period, holding even in shots at eight-apiece, and broke the Rivermen shutout on a power play goal from Chays Ruddy at 7:37, assisted by Scott Kirton and Brendan Harrogate.  Peoria responded with a power play goal of their own as Alec Hagaman made it 5-1 at 10:47 and scored again at 12:23 to make it 6-1.  Lincoln Hatten got Evansville a second goal on the power play at 15:48 from Kirton and Ruddy, but the Rivermen finalized the scoring with a power play goal from Ernst at 19:37, ending the score at 7-2 Peoria.

Ruddy finished with a goal and assist, Hatten scored one goal, and Kirton tallied two assists.  In goal, Ceci finished with 28 saves on 35 shots.  Game two will be in Peoria on Friday, April 19th at 7:15pm CT, and if Evansville can rally to win game two, game three in Peoria will be on Sunday, April 21st at 3:15pm CT.

Individual game tickets and group packages are on sale for this 2023-24 season.  Season tickets for the 2024-25 season are on sale now.  Call 812-422-BOLT or visit our all-new website (www.evansvillethunderbolts.com) for details.

About Evansville Thunderbolts: The Evansville Thunderbolts is the area’s only professional hockey team. The Thunderbolts are a proud member of the SPHL.  The team is owned and operated by VW Sports, L.L.C, a subsidiary of VenuWorks, Inc. www.evansvillethunderbolts.com

Latest News

Bolts Eclipse Bulls 4-3 in Overtime; Advance to Semifinals

Pelham, Ala.:  The 14-year second-round drought ended for Evansville hockey fans on Saturday night in Pelham, as the Thunderbolts defeated the Birmingham Bulls 4-3 in overtime to advance to the President’s Cup Semifinals for the first time in their history, the first series win for Evansville pro hockey since the Evansville IceMen in 2010.  Game one against the Peoria Rivermen at Ford Center will be on Wednesday, April 17th at 7:00pm CT, admission free of charge.

Only 42 seconds into the game, the Thunderbolts grabbed the first lead of the night as Logan vande Meerakker sniped in a shot off the rush, assisted by Scott Kirton and Grant Spence.  Birmingham tied the game at 7:04 with a power play goal from Drake Glover.  Following a pair of clutch penalty kills, the Thunderbolts took a 2-1 lead at 18:10 of the second period, as Vadim Vasjonkin’s shot just barely got through Hayden Stewart, assisted by Lincoln Hatten and Matthew Hobbs.  The Bulls tied the game 6:13 into the third period with a goal from Matt Wiesner, before a goal from Dmitri Yushkevich with only 4:28 remaining gave the Thunderbolts a late 3-2 lead, assisted by Scott Kirton.  However, the Bulls answered again to tie the game and force overtime with another Glover power play goal at 16:29.  In overtime it was Hobbs, who started his professional career with the Bulls before joining Evansville two years ago, who scored the series-winning goal 5:28 into overtime, assisted by Myles Abbate and Vasjonkin to win the game and the series for Evansville, 4-3 and 2-1 respectively.

Hobbs scored the series-winning goal along with an assist, Vasjonkin finished with a goal and assist, Yushkevich along with vande Meerakker scored one goal each, and Kirton finished with a pair of assists.  In goal, Ceci finished with 56 saves on 59 shots for his second win of the playoffs.  In addition to  being the first series win in Thunderbolts’ franchise history, it was the 7th time in SPHL history that the #1 seeded team was upset in the first round.  The Thunderbolts will take on the Peoria Rivermen in the  President’s Cup Semifinal, also a best-of-three series.  Evansville will host game one at Ford Center, free to attend, on Wednesday, April 17th at 7:00pm CT.  Game two will be in Peoria on Friday, April 19th at 7:15pm CT, and if necessary, game three in Peoria will be on Sunday, April 21st at 3:15pm CT.

Individual game tickets and group packages are on sale for this 2023-24 season.  Season tickets for the 2024-25 season are on sale now.  Call 812-422-BOLT or visit our all-new website (www.evansvillethunderbolts.com) for details.

About Evansville Thunderbolts: The Evansville Thunderbolts is the area’s only professional hockey team. The Thunderbolts are a proud member of the SPHL.  The team is owned and operated by VW Sports, L.L.C, a subsidiary of VenuWorks, Inc. www.evansvillethunderbolts.com

Latest News

Ruddy's Overtime Goal Lifts Bolts Over Bulls 2-1, Forces Game 3

Evansville, In.:  In an extremely close game fitting for playoff hockey, the Thunderbolts and Bulls took game two of this best-of-three series to overtime, where Chays Ruddy scored to win the game for Evansville 2-1 on Thursday at Ford Center, forcing a winner-take-all game three in Pelham on Saturday night.   

Once again, the Bulls were the ones to open the scoring, with Drake Glover scoring on a power play only 3:38 into the first period to give Birmingham the opening lead.  Evansville managed to stop the bleeding at one goal, and in the second period tied the game as Mark Zhukov scored at 4:44 from Brendan Harrogate and Vadim Vasjonkin to tie the game at 1-1.  After a scoreless third period, the game went to overtime, becoming only the second game in Thunderbolts playoff history to go past 60 minutes.  On a power play at 10:21 of the first overtime period, Ruddy scored the game-winning goal with a screened shot from the point, assisted by Matthew Hobbs and Harrogate to win the game for Evansville 2-1, for the first overtime win in Thunderbolts’ playoff history.  Also of note in this performance was the play of Cole Ceci in net, the power play units which scored in their second consecutive game, and the penalty kill units which recovered from an early power play goal to shut down the Bulls on their next five attempts.

Zhukov and Ruddy scored Evansville’s goals, while Harrogate tallied a pair of assists.  In goal, Ceci finished with 34 saves on 35 shots for his first professional playoff win, becoming the second goaltender in franchise history to win a playoff game, following Ryan de Melo in 2018.  Game three between the Thunderbolts and Bulls will be on Saturday at the Pelham Civic Complex, the winner advancing to the President’s Cup Semifinal.

Individual game tickets and group packages are on sale for this 2023-24 season.  Season tickets for the 2024-25 season are on sale now.  Call 812-422-BOLT or visit our all-new website (www.evansvillethunderbolts.com) for details.

About Evansville Thunderbolts: The Evansville Thunderbolts is the area’s only professional hockey team. The Thunderbolts are a proud member of the SPHL.  The team is owned and operated by VW Sports, L.L.C, a subsidiary of VenuWorks, Inc. www.evansvillethunderbolts.com

Latest News

Thunderbolts Come Up Just Short, Fall 5-4 to Bulls

Pelham, Al.:  Game one of the best-of-three series against the Bulls went down to the wire, with the Thunderbolts just barely falling short, 5-4 in Pelham on Wednesday night, and now must win on home ice on Thursday to keep the season alive.   The Thunderbolts’ next home game will be on Thursday, April 11th against the Birmingham Bulls, puck drop at 7:00pm CT.

The Bulls opened the scoring once again, with Scott Donahue redirecting in a shot at 2:18 to make it 1-0 Birmingham.  Evansville rallied to tie and briefly take a 2-1 lead, with goals from Dmitri Yushkevich at 3:49 from Scott Kirton and Matt Dorsey, and Myles Abbate unassisted at 17:16.  Shortly after Abbate’s goal, the Bulls tied the game back up at 2-2 on a goal from Zac Masson at 18:01.  The Bulls controlled play in the second period but were held to only a single goal, scored by Ryan Romeo at 11:05.  Down 3-2 going into the third period, Evansville had a strong first half and tied the game again, as Brendan Harrogate scored on a power play from Lincoln Hatten at 7:52.  However, late penalties cost Evansville, as Nikita Kozyrev scored just following a Bulls power play at 14:59, followed by Drake Glover on another power play at 15:31 to give Birmingham a 5-3 lead.  In a late rally, Logan vande Meerakker scored to make it a 5-4 game with 40 seconds remaining, however the Thunderbolts ran out of time after that.  Evansville now must win on Ford Center ice on Thursday to force a decisive third game in Pelham on Saturday. 

Yushkevich, Abbate, Harrogate, and vande Meerakker scored one goal each, while Kirton finished with two assists.  In goal, Cole Ceci finished with 29 saves on 34 shots.

Individual game tickets and group packages are on sale for this 2023-24 season.  Season tickets for the 2024-25 season are on sale now.  Call 812-422-BOLT or visit our all-new website (www.evansvillethunderbolts.com) for details.

About Evansville Thunderbolts: The Evansville Thunderbolts is the area’s only professional hockey team. The Thunderbolts are a proud member of the SPHL.  The team is owned and operated by VW Sports, L.L.C, a subsidiary of VenuWorks, Inc. www.evansvillethunderbolts.com

Latest News

Playoff Roster + Schedule

Evansville, In.:  With the regular season complete, the Thunderbolts prepare for their third consecutive trip to the President’s Cup Playoffs, taking on the top-seeded Birmingham Bulls in the first round.

Week In Review:

The Thunderbolts fell short in two close games to the Bulls on Ford Center ice this past Friday and Saturday, 5-3 on Friday and 3-2 in a shootout on Saturday.  Grant Spence, Matthew Hobbs, and Myles Abbate each scored on Friday, while Adam Pilotte and Abbate provided goals on Saturday.  In goal, Cole Ceci finished with 26 saves on 31 shots on Friday, with Ty Taylor stopping 26 of 28 shots along with 4 of 6 shootout attempts on Saturday.

The Week Ahead:

Game 1 between the Thunderbolts and Bulls will be at Birmingham this Wednesday, April 10th.  Game 2 will be at Ford Center on Thursday, April 11th.  If necessary, Game 3 will be back at Birmingham on Saturday, April 13th, all three games beginning at 7:00pm CT.  Fans can watch both Games 1 and 3 (if necessary) on FloHockey with a paid subscription or can listen in for free on the Thunderbolts Mixlr Channel.  Fans can also watch both games at the Official Thunderbolts away game watch party at Parkway Pizza on 3911 Broadway Avenue on Evansville’s West Side.  All tickets for Thursday’s game at Ford Center will be $25 dollars each.  For tickets, call (812)422-BOLT (2548), go to EvansvilleThunderbolts.com, or visit the Ford Center Ticket Office.   

  • Thunderbolts Playoff Roster:
    • Forwards: Lincoln Hatten, Mark Zhukov, Matthew Hobbs, Matt Dorsey, Myles Abbate, Jacob Kamps, Logan vande Meerakker, Brendan Harrogate, Grant Spence, Vadim Vasjonkin, Scott Kirton
    • Defense: Chays Ruddy, Benjamin Lindberg, Adam Pilotte, Bronson Adams, Grayson Valente, Nick Prestia, Dmitri Yushkevich
    • Goaltenders: Ty Taylor, Cole Ceci

Scouting the Opponent:

  • Birmingham Bulls:
    • Record: 38-9-9, 85 Points, 1st Place
    • Leading Goal Scorer: Drake Glover (33 Goals)
    • Leading Point Scorer: Carson Rose (65 Points)
    • Primary Goaltender: Hayden Stewart (26-7-6, .925 Save %)
    • Thunderbolts 23-24 Record vs BHM: 3-3-1

Birmingham picked up goals from Matt Wiesner, Scott Donahue, CJ Walker, MacGregor Sinclair, and Troy MacTavish on Friday, with Saturday’s goals coming from Donahue, Drake Glover, and Sinclair with the shootout-winning goal.  Hayden Stewart stopped 16 of 19 shots on Friday, with Drennen Atherton stopping 27 of 29 shots, along with 5 of 6 shootout attempts, on Saturday.

Individual game tickets and group packages are on sale for this 2023-24 season.  Season tickets for the 2024-25 season are on sale now.  Call 812-422-BOLT or visit our all-new website (www.evansvillethunderbolts.com) for details.

About Evansville Thunderbolts: The Evansville Thunderbolts is the area’s only professional hockey team. The Thunderbolts are a proud member of the SPHL. The team is owned and operated by VW Sports, L.L.C, a subsidiary of VenuWorks, Inc. www.evansvillethunderbolts.com

Player Portrait

Meet
The

Discover our current team roster and learn interesting information and statistics about each member of the Evansville Thunderbolts! Get involved by following your favorite players and watching their progress over the course of each season.

Team roster


Fan
Experiences

Explore the many exciting and unique experiences we offer to our fans and spectators. Ride on the Zamboni, ring the air raid siren, get photos with the team & more. There is a little something for every fan and visitor out there. Learn more today and get involved with the Evansville Thunderbolts by clicking or tapping the link below.

Fan Experiences
Kid riding zamboni