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Former Muskie signs with SPHL team

By Randy Thoms Sep 24, 2023 | 10:30 PM

Supplied photo

A former member of Fort Frances Muskies boys’ hockey team is headed to Indiana.

Tyler Vanuden has signed a professional contract with the Evansville Thunderbolts of the SPHL.

The SPHL, formerly known as the Southern Professional Hockey League, is a 10-team league taking in teams from the southeastern and midwestern United States.

Vanuden joins the team after spending the last two seasons playing hockey at Buffalo State University, where he had 12 goals and 22 points over 27 games.

Vanuden was a member of the Muskies NorWOSSA championship teams in 2014 and 2015, notching 31 goals and 93 points in 35 games over those two seasons.

After high school, the 25-year-old saw several seasons in junior hockey, playing for teams in Alberta and British Columbia before heading to Finlandia University in Hancock, Michigan in 2019, transferring to Buffalo States two years later.

“I’m very excited and grateful for the opportunity to turn pro with Evansville. I can’t wait to get there, get on the ice, and get Ford Center rocking on game night,” states Vanuden.

Vanuden is expected to be in the Thunderbolts’ starting lineup when they open the 2023-24 season with a home game on October 21 against the Huntsville Havoc.

Davis Ross (Birmingham), Sullivan Shortreed (Vermilion County), and Jared Bethune (Birmingham) were among Fort Frances area players that skated in the SPHL last season.