It’s been more than two months since the Carolina Thunderbirds last lost a hockey game, and tonight, they made FHL history.
With a 4-3 victory over the Danville Dashers, the Thunderbirds set a new FHL mark for the longest winning-streak in league history, stretching their amazing run to 22-straight wins.
The 22 consecutive wins breaks the old mark of 21 set by two teams, the 2017-18 Port Huron Prowlers, and the 2010-11 New York Aviators in the first season of the FHL.
Tonight was not easy for the Birds, with the Dashers doing all they could to snap the streak, tying the game at 2-2 in the second period on a goal from Ryan Alves, but 1:31 later, Karel Drahorad gave Carolina a 3-2 lead they took the third. Danville again tied it up halfway through the final frame on a goal from Nathan Pelligra, but just 15 seconds later Joe Cangelosi played the hero and netted the winning and streak-extending goal.
During this current run, the Thunderbirds have beaten every team in the FHL, with the last loss coming on December 1 in a 5-4 decision against the Port Huron Prowlers.
But since this is the FHL, the record isn’t without controversy, and it comes courtesy of former Port Huron coach, Joe Pace Sr., who claimed that the Prowlers actually had a 24-game winning streak last season.
The problem of course with claiming their streak was 24 games, is that three of those wins were via forfeit, when the Cornwall Nationals folded mid-season and the Prowlers didn’t actually have to play the games. We here at Bus League Hockey are of the opinion that if you didn’t actually play the game, then it doesn’t count towards the winning streak. It’s a bit like having millionaire parents, then claiming you worked for all you have as your ride your jetski around the lake.
And at least according to the top brass at the FHL, Carolina’s 22-game mark is the record, as Thunderbirds’ broadcaster Zak DeBeaussaert reached out to the FHL, who confirmed that Port Huron and New York’s 21-game streaks were the FHL-recognized records before tonight.
If there is any hope for the rest of the league as we head down the home stretch, it’s that neither of the teams that had the previous mark of 21 games went on to win the Commissioner’s Cup, New York was dropped in the finals by the Akwesasne Warriors in four games, and last season the Prowlers were dumped in four by the Watertown Wolves. So there is still plenty of hockey to be played, and anything can happen in a short series.
Regardless, going more than two months without a loss and winning 22-straight games is one hell of an accomplishment, no matter what league you’re in, or who you’re playing. So congratulations to everyone at the Carolina Thunderbirds on the record.
Carolina will look to stretch the mark to 23 and beyond next weekend when they host the slumping Watertown Wolves for three games in Carolina.