Bill enters his second season as General Manager and Head Coach with the Thunder Cats. After spending stints in junior A as an Associate Coach and Assistant General Manager both in the Alberta Junior Hockey League and the Maritime Hockey League, he returns to the Kootenay International Hockey League. His previous roles in the KIJHL include being General Manager and Head Coach of the Castlegar Rebels and Princeton Posse and previously here in Creston as an Associate Coach and in the VIJHL as a Head Coach.
In addition to his junior hockey resume, he is a former Head Coach at both Okanagan Hockey Academy and Pursuit of Excellence Hockey Academy as well as winning a bronze medal as Assistant Coach at the U17 World Championship where he coached a handful of current NHL stars.
Bill spends his off-season in Penticton, BC, and spends much time in Calgary, AB as well. In addition to his hockey resume he has spent time as a Bison Rancher and is a survivor of stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.
ASSISTANT GENERAL MANAGER
Switzer spent last season with the Alberta Junior Hockey League’s (AJHL) Whitecourt Wolverines as a regional scout and will continue with this role for the upcoming season. Prior to that, Switzer spent two seasons as a co-coach for the Brandon AAA U17 Prep program, and an additional season as a co-coach for the Bantam AAA Wheat Kings program.
Switzer had an impressive junior hockey playing career split between the Wolverines and in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) with the Flin Flon Bombers. In his final year of junior hockey in 2015/16, Switzer amassed an impressive 75 regular-season points, and an additional 19 in the playoffs, capping it off with playoff MVP for the Bombers. After sitting out the next season to rehabilitate his ACL, he continued his career playing NCAA Division I for the University of Alaska-Anchorage.
While playing, Switzer’s leadership ability was evident with a myriad of personal awards and accomplishments including winning SJHL Playoff MVP, a Fan Favorite Award, a Humanitarian Award, an SJHL Leadership Scholarship, and was an alternate captain throughout his career. Prior to junior hockey, he was also a two-time league all-star at the Midget AAA level and has gone deep in the playoffs most of his playing years.
Green enters his second season third season with the Thunder Cats, and second as a member of the coaching staff. Green finished his junior career in Creston during the 2019-20 season. Before joining the Thunder Cats, Green spent 4 seasons with the Fernie Ghostriders. The KIJHL veteran finished with 169 games played, compiling 10 goals, 30 assists, and 213 penalty minutes. The Trail, BC native is currently attending Selkirk College and has tremendous knowledge, presence, and leadership for the ‘Cats.
Hockey Operations – Specialized Skills Coaches
MATTHEW ARMITAGE – GOALTENDING COACH
Matthew enters his first season with the Creston Valley Thunder Cats and has been an instructor with the renowned David Marcoux School of Goaltending in Calgary, AB. Matthew moved to Creston this off-season and is excited to continue his coaching career after his junior hockey career. After initially being drafted 80th overall by the Spokane Chiefs of the WHL, Matthew enjoyed a successful junior hockey career playing for the Calgary Hitmen (WHL), Salmon Arm Silverbacks (BCHL), and the Okotoks Oilers (AJHL).
JAGGER DIRK – SKILLS AND POSITIONING COACH, DEFENSE
Jagger has spent several years as a defense instructor at Okanagan Hockey Schools and has contracted to BCHL teams during his time away from playing. Jagger comes to the Thunder Cats after finishing up a pro career that took him through the AHL (Binghamton Devils, Utica Comets), ECHL (Kalamazoo Wings), and overseas. Prior to playing professionally, at the amateur level, Jagger was the recipient of many accolades including being named to the CIS All-Rookie team, USports First All-Star Team and for AUS conference was named USports Defenseman of the Year. From a team perspective, Jagger has been a finalist twice in the University Cup (St. Francis Xavier), and was a Memorial Cup Champion (Kootenay Ice). Jagger resides in Penticton, BC and is currently a financial advisor.
JAYMES VEITCH – POWER SKATING COACH
Jaymes is a former defenseman for both the Creston Valley Thunder Cats and Beaver Valley NiteHawks and has spent multiple years as a power skating instructor for many programs including Creston Minor Hockey. Jaymes spent multiple years as a student and instructor at Edge of Excellence Hockey School. Jaymes resides locally in Creston, BC.