100 games and keen to retain trophy

Joe Orr. Photo: Sari Rene
Joe Orr. Photo: Sari Rene
Joe Orr has come a long way since joining the Dunedin Thunder as a schoolboy.

The 22-year-old has become a mainstay after becoming a member in 2012.

He can officially take veteran status into tonight's game at the Dunedin Ice Stadium against the Canterbury Red Devils too.

He played his 100th game in Thunder colours last weekend against the West Auckland Admirals in Auckland.

It made him the Thunder's third centurion - joining stalwarts Paris Heyd and Regan Wilson.

While the 6-4 loss had been disappointing, the side had mounted a comeback after trailing 5-0 and Orr got in on the action in finding the goal.

"It was unfortunate it wasn't at home and we also didn't have our best game.

"But it still felt good putting that final stat on the veteran status.

"There's not much I can say, really. It was just another game, but it was special and I did end up scoring, which was also special.

"And the fact I've always played for the Thunder, it does mean a lot to me.

"I love our team and the fans and to be able to play 100 games for them is pretty good."

Having first played for the team as a 16-year-old year 11 pupil at King's High School, Orr has seen and done a lot.

However, it was the recent last gasp 4-3 win against the Stampede in Queenstown that was most memorable.

Not only was it his first win in Queenstown, the team had taken home the Toa Kauhanga Riri Toa trophy - the Ranfurly Shield of New Zealand ice hockey - in the process.

It was the first time the side had won it and it will be on the line tomorrow night - the second game of the double-header against Canterbury.

Not only that, the side needs a win to remain in touch with the playoff contenders on the table.

That left the game with a playoff feel to it and Orr said both were motivating factors.

"That was quite a big thing for us, that trophy symbolises that huge win we had.

"It would mean a lot to us if we could keep it, hopefully defend it again in the last home game and keep it until next season.

"It's definitely big for us, concentrating on that and getting the win to not only defend it, but to get the points."

Tonight's game begins at 7pm, while tomorrow's starts at 5.30pm.


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