Colorado Rubber

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Erie native, Bison, RoughRiders product Norwell taking advantage of NCDC opportunity with Twin City


Trace Norwell grew up in Colorado and after playing his formative years for the Rocky Mountain RoughRiders, has found his groove in the USPHL with the NCDC’s Twin City Thunder, a team based in Maine.

This season, the Erie native is averaging a point per game for the Thunder and said the league has been a turning point in his career.

“The league overall is a good skilled league that I thought my style of play would fit in well,” Norwell said. “The Thunder as an organization is led by great coaches, have loyalty to their players and help player development. This made me want to play for them (for the 2021-22 season).

“Overall, our team has been playing well this season. We’re a little bit of a younger team so the second half of the season looks even more promising. Personally, I’ve been playing well. Been fortunate to play in many types of situations and do what I can to help the team succeed.”

Through 21 games, Norwell has posted 12 goals and nine assists. He’s on pace for 27 goals and 21 assists. Last season, Norwell recorded 13 goals and 32 points in 48 games for Twin City.

“Just being in the right place,” Norwell said of his scoring prowess. “I’ve got two great linemates who have been able to find me in soft ice and leave the rest to me. I’ve also done a great job getting to the net and most of the time, you can be lucky and have the puck find you.”

Prior to the RoughRiders, Norwell skated for the Boulder Bison.

“I’ve been fortunate enough to play under many great coaches, but Coach (Doug) Smail of my 18U years helped me prepare well for junior hockey,” said Norwell.

Aging out of junior hockey after this season, Norwell already has his eyes on potential future plans.

“My short-term goals are to continue my development and success during this season,” Norwell said. “My long-term goals are to play hockey in college for a school with great academics, helping set me up after school.”

Photo/Mike “Ram” McDonough

— Matt Mackinder

(November 29, 2022)

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