CHELMSFORD, Ont. – A pair of early third period goals helped send the Soo Thunderbirds on their way to an eventual 3-2 victory over the Rayside-Balfour Canadians Sunday evening in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League West Division encounter at Chelmsford Arena.
Sault Ste. Marie had the early edge in the contest outshooting Rayside-Balfour 10-7 in the first period and were rewarded with the lone tally of the frame, which was supplied by Kaidan McDonald as he finished off a Noah Boman feed.
The Canadians were quick to connect in the middle stanza to knot the affair at 1-1 early as Brandon Atkins scored 40 seconds in.
It stayed tied into the final frame where the Soo regained the lead in the opening moments with Avery Rebek picking up his first NOJHL goal at 2:19 during a man advantage.
The Thunderbirds then tacked on some insurance two and a half minutes later with the club`s leading point getter of last season in Nick Smith making it 3-1.
Giordano Biondi did bring Rayside-Balfour back to within one at 17:12 but the Soo held on from there to secure the road win.
William Anderson made 28 stops to record the decision for the Thunderbirds while Jean-Marc Brisson faced 41 attempts in defeat for the Canadians.
Photos courtesy of Rob and Caleigh Fera: www.sudburylight.ca