Game 7 of the NOJHL final takes place tomorrow night at the Rhodes

By Matt Stefano

It’s the hottest ticket in town!

Game 7 of the NOJHL final between the Hearst Lumberjacks and the Soo Thunderbirds.

And it all takes place tomorrow night at 7:00 p.m. at the John Rhodes Community Centre in the east end of Sault Ste. Marie.

The Thunderbirds, who have a chance to hoist the Copeland Cup McNamara Trophy tomorrow night in front of the Sault Ste. Marie faithful, are also coming off a big 4-3 overtime victory in game 6 of the NOJHL final, which took place last night in Hearst.

This will also be the second consecutive time that the Thunderbirds and the Lumberjacks will be meeting for a game 7 NOJHL finals matchup.


Three games ago, the Soo Thunderbirds were down 3-games-to-none against the Lumberjacks to start the NOJHL best-of-seven final series.

But after battling back to even up the series at three, the Thunderbirds now all of a sudden have a chance to hoist the Copeland Cup McNamara Trophy in front of the Sault Ste. Marie faithful tomorrow night at the John Rhodes.

The last time the Thunderbirds won a game 7 of an NOJHL playoff series, was back on March 28, 2018, when they defeated the Soo Eagles by a score of 3-2 in game 7 of the NOJHL West Division semifinal series, in a game that took place at the John Rhodes.

That year (2018), the Thunderbirds also came back to win that series in 7 games after trailing the Eagles 3-games-to-1.


In game 6 of the NOJHL final last night in Hearst, Thunderbirds alternate captain Russell Oldham was the overtime hero at the 6:11 mark of the overtime period, giving the Soo a 4-3 overtime victory, which sent the Hearst Lumberjacks fans home disappointed after not seeing the cup hoisted by their team on home ice.

Oldham, who scored the overtime goal last night, also gave himself his first career overtime goal.

The Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario product is now entering tomorrow night’s game with 3 goals and 2 assists in 13 postseason games played.

In 34 games played during the regular season, Oldham only found the back of the net 6 times while setting up 9 others.


After recording two assists in last night’s 4-3 overtime loss to the Soo Thunderbirds in game 6 back in Hearst, Hearst Lumberjacks assistant captain Zachary Demers is now entering tomorrow night’s game with a league-leading 14 assists on the postseason.

Demers, who recorded his 14th assist of the postseason last night, also tied the team record for most assists by a Lumberjacks player in a single postseason, joining Bradley Golant (2019).

Not only has Demers tied Golant for most assists in a single postseason, but his 14 assists in the playoffs now also have him tied with Max Johnson (2017-2019) and Bradley Golant (2017-2019) for most career playoff assists by a Lumberjacks player.


Anyone wishing to purchase a ticket ahead of time before tomorrow night’s game, can contact Soo Thunderbirds assistant general manager Cole Cloutier by phone at 705-971-8372 or by email at

Tickets for tomorrow night’s game will go on sale at 5:00 p.m. today!

(Photo credit to Bob Davies)




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