Bob Elliott, Chair of the Thorold Runway of Recognition Committee, came to Council Tuesday night to unveil the 2015 Inductees. The gala Runway of Recognition dinner will be held this year on March 31 and the cost of a ticket is $20, available from Tim Whelan at the Thorold Credit Union. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. and dinner is at 6:00. You can call Tim at (905) 227-1106.

The following is the information Bob gave me for the inductees:

Louis Savona
Inductee2015 – Builder – Hockey
1970 – Present

Louis Savona was the owner of the Thorold Jr. B hockey team from 1983 – 1999. In 1984 he renamed the team “Blackhawks” after his favourite team. During his time as the owner, the Blackhawks went to the Sutherland Cup playdowns on 2 different occasions. Over the 16 years of his ownership the Blackhawks produced 9 players who made the OHL, 6 of whom played pro hockey and 4 who made the NHL (playing a total of 2477 games).

Most importantly, Louie gave young men from Thorold and all around Niagara Region a chance to play the game they loved…many of whom became fine hockey players and even better citizens.

Ryan Savoie
Inductee 2015 – Athlete – Hockey
1970 – Present

Ryan Savoie started his hockey career playing minor hockey for the TAAA. From 1989 – 1994 Ryan played Jr. B for the Blackhawks, scoring 130 goals with 152 assists for a total 282 points (third all-time in points – first in goals). Ryan is 1 of only 5 players to score 50 goals in a season.

After Jr. B, Ryan played 15 seasons of pro hockey all around the world, including 3 games with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1998-99. In 1999-2000 he played for the Canadian National Team where he scored 21 goals and 31 assists.

Lenny Soccio
Inductee 2015 – Athlete – Hockey
1970 – Present

Lenny Soccio played all of his minor hockey for the TAAA and played one season for the Jr. B Blackhawks before he was scouted and signed by the North Bay Centennials of the OHL in 1984. In his 4 years with the Centennials, he scored 114 goals and 190 assists, totalling 304 points. In his final year, Soccio’s 135 points was the second highest point total in the league. Soccio would win the Leo Lalonde Memorial Trophy, which is given to the best overage player in the OHL.

From 1987 – 1994 Lenny played pro hockey in North American and from 1994 – 2005 he played in Europe – primarily in Germany. Lenny was a member of the 2002 Germany National Team that played in the Olympics (losing 3 – 2 to Canada). Lenny played in the Germany league until 2005 and then became a coach in the league.

Edward “Ed” Pizzo Jr.
Inductee 2015 – Athlete – Hockey/Baseball/Football
1970 – Present

Ed Pizzo was an all-round athlete who excelled at a number of different sports. Ed played minor hockey for the TAAA and the Jr. B team. He went to Brown University on a hockey scholarship, playing 4 years and earning 2 varsity letters.

Ed was on 2 teams that won Ontario Baseball Association Championships (1974 peewee and 1976 midget) and he quarterbacked the 1980 Denis Morris Redman Sr. Football team to a City Championship.

On his return from university Ed became involved in TAAA instructing and coaching at a number of levels.

David A. Handley
Inductee 2015 – Athlete – 5-Pin Bowling
1970 – Present

David A. Handley is a lifelong bowler and resident of Thorold. He has won the Royal Canadian Legion’s Provincial Doubles (1995) and Singles Championships (1996) in back to back years. Dave has won a Provincial Sons of Italy Team Championship in 1990, a Canadian Corps Team Championship and a Niagara Pro League Team Championship (1990).

Dave has bowled many 400+ games and 900+ triples but the bowler’s dream of a 450 perfect game has never happened.

Dave has been involved in many sporting events – Legion Minor Baseball, Darts, Thorold Ladies’ Softball, TAAA referee, and shuffleboard as well as being the Branch 17 sports officer for many years.

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