Thunderbirds pick-up home win over rival Eagles

SAULT STE. MARIE, Ont. – The Soo Thunderbirds supplied the first three tallies in the contest, and never trailed, as they went on to get by the Soo Eagles 5-2 Saturday in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up at John Rhodes Community Centre.

The host Thunderbirds began the scoring at 5:49 of the first period as Daniel Beaupre took a Kelsey Ouellet bounce pass off the side boards and went to the net where after being initially stopped by Eagles’ netminder Anthony Zolezzi, stuffed in his own rebound to reach the 20-goal plateau on the campaign.

Beaupre then was the set-up man on his club’s second marker as he put a feed in front that was steered in by Quinn Myles at 11:32.

Action in the second stanza saw the T-Birds extend their lead seven and a half minutes in when Grayson Ibrahim, parked in front, got a piece off a Kolby Fellinger wrist shot from the top of the right circle.

Getting one back before the intermission, Darby McCarthy put the visitors on the board as he knocked in a cross-crease backhand from teammate Alex Freund past Kolton Bourret at 17:12.

Heading to the third period, Ouellet added some insurance for the Thunderbirds at 13:21 after Jacob Smith won a draw back to him where, while falling, whipped an attempt through a screened Zolezzi.

The Eagles did counter just over a minute later with Freund finishing off a goal-mouth scramble by chipping the puck over Bourret from the left side.

They then got their goalkeeper out for an additional skater in the late going, however Myles iced it for the hosts with a rising long-range empty netter to round out the scoring.

With the win, the Thunderbirds raise their record to 32-13-4-1 overall, while in defeat, the Eagles fall to 31-20-1-2.

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