By Matt Stefano
After picking up a 6-1 win over the Cochrane Crunch last Saturday night at the John Rhodes, the Soo Thunderbirds returned to action on Wednesday night as they made a trip to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan to take on the Soo Eagles at the Pullar Stadium.
Wednesday night’s game also marked the return of defenceman Brodie McConnell-Barker, who was back in the Thunderbirds lineup after suiting up for three games last weekend with the Ontario Hockey League’s Soo Greyhounds.
On Wednesday night, the Thunderbirds surrendered five goals, including four through the opening forty minutes of play, as they fell to the Soo Eagles by a score of 5-2 at the Pullar Stadium in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.
With the game scoreless late in the opening period, it would be the Eagles striking first at the 16:17 mark of the first, courtesy of Jack Paweski’s 5th goal of the season from Gavin Rozema, making the score 1-0 for the Eagles.
Rozema, who picked up the lone assist on Paweski’s goal, also gave himself his first career NOJHL assist.
With the Eagles on a power play almost nine minutes into the second, it would then be Eagles forward Brian Fiddes getting his 5th goal of the season from Colin Handy and Coby Fox at 8:55, which put the Eagles up by two.
Just 4:10 after Fiddes’s goal, it would then be Eagles rookie forward Teig Driessen getting his 2nd goal of the season from Coby Fox, which made the score 3-0 for the Eagles.
Fox, who drew the only assist of Driessen’s tally, also gave himself his second assist of the night, which turned out to be his fourth career multi-point game.
With the Eagles on a power play late in the second, it would then be Eagles forward Jack Briskey getting his 4th goal of the season from Jack Mortson and Nolan Hendry at 16:54, which made the score 4-0 for the Eagles heading into the third.
The Thunderbirds would then break the goose-egg
at the 7:26 mark of the third, courtesy of rookie forward Jackson Truchan’s 12th goal of the season on the power play from Samuel Lake, which cut the Eagles lead to 4-1.
Truchan’s power play goal, also gave him his fifth power play marker of the season, which moved him into sole possession of first among all NOJHL rookies in power play goals.
The Thunderbirds would then get another power play goal just 4:37 later, as assistant captain Michael Chaffay would notch his 7th goal of the season, which cut the Eagles lead to 4-2.
The Eagles would then take a 5-2 lead with just 3:33 left to go in the third, as rookie defenceman Michael Starzomski would notch his first career NOJHL tally from Michael Szlag.
Eagles goaltender Logan Raffaele made 33 saves for the victory while Thunderbirds netminder made 29 saves in the loss.
The Thunderbirds will now be back in action on Friday night at 7:00 p.m., when they will visit Elliot Lake to take on the Elliot Lake Red Wings at Centennial Arena.