Marlow’s overtime tally gives Thunderbirds win over Hearst

By Matt Stefano

The Soo Thunderbirds are now above the .500 mark for the first time this season.

On Sunday afternoon, the Soo Thunderbirds improved their record to 7 wins, 6 losses and 1 shootout loss as they defeated the Hearst Lumberjacks by a score of 4-3 in overtime at the John Rhodes Community Centre in Sault Ste. Marie.

The win also gave the Thunderbirds their third consecutive victory.

“It felt good to get another win this afternoon, especially against Hearst,” said Soo Thunderbirds forward Wyatt Marlow, who finished the afternoon with a pair of goals, including the overtime winner. “I know the team was struggling to beat Hearst early in this season, so if feels good to finally get a win over them.”

“I thought we battled very well this afternoon as a group,” added Soo Thunderbirds rookie forward Jackson Truchan, who also had a two-goal game of his own on Sunday afternoon. “We were hard to play against all afternoon and everyone was contributing to this win from the goal-line out.”

The Thunderbirds opened the scoring at the 14:15 mark of the first period as rookie forward Jackson Truchan notched his 5th goal of the season on the power play from Dharan Cap and Michael Chaffay, which put the Soo up 1-0.

Truchan, who opened the scoring for the Thunderbirds on the power play, also gave himself his 3rd power play goal of the season, which moved him into sole possession of first among all NOJHL rookies in power play goals.

“It feels pretty special and it always feels great to score, but I can’t take all the credit because there’s always four other guys on the ice that help me get the puck and they’re giving me chances to score every game,” Truchan said.

With the Thunderbirds leading 1-0 almost six minutes into the second period, it would then be Lumberjacks forward Cody Walker getting his 2nd goal of the season on the power play from Andrew Morton and Adam Shillinglaw at 5:48, which tied the game up at one.

The Thunderbirds would then retake the lead on another power play of their own at the 11:31 mark of the second, courtesy of Wyatt Marlow’s 2nd goal of the season from Dharan Cap and Brodie McConnell-Barker, making the score 2-1 for the Soo.

Marlow, who scored his 2nd goal of the season, also gave himself his 3rd point in just his fourth game played.

The Thunderbirds would then take a two-goal lead with just 33 seconds to go in the second period, as Jackson Truchan would then notch his second goal of the game and 6th goal of the season from Brodie McConnell-Barker, which made the score 3-1 for the Soo heading into the third.

Truchan, who notched his second goal of the afternoon, also gave himself his second straight multi-goal game.

“Truchan has been awesome these last two games,” Marlow said about Truchan. “He’s moving his feet, he’s putting the puck at the back of the net and we can’t ask for more out of him.”

With the Thunderbirds leading the Lumberjacks 3-1 early in the third, the Lumberjacks would then cut the Thunderbirds to one just 1:36 in on the power play, as NOJHL’s leading scorer Riley Klugerman would notch his 12th goal of the season from Noah Janicki and Zachary Demers, making the score 3-2.

Klugerman, who scored his 12th goal of the season, also extended his point-scoring streak to eleven games.

The Lumberjacks would then tie the game up at three at the 12:44 mark of the third period, courtesy of Cody Walker’s second goal of the game and 3rd goal of the season from Adam Shillinglaw and Mathieu Comeau, which eventually sent the game into overtime.

Walker’s second goal of the afternoon, also turned out to be his first career multi-goal game.

With the game tied 3-3 at the start of overtime, it would then be Thunderbirds forward Wyatt Marlow getting his second goal of the afternoon and his first career overtime tally just 55 seconds into overtime from Brodie McConnell-Barker and Michael Chaffay, which gave the Thunderbirds a 4-3 overtime win over the Hearst Lumberjacks.

“Barker (McConnell-Barker) found me back door in overtime this afternoon and that overtime goal might’ve been the easiest goal I’ve ever scored,” said Marlow, who now has 3 goals and 1 assist in 4 games since joining the Thunderbirds.

McConnell-Barker, who drew an assist on Marlow’s overtime tally, also gave himself his third assist of the afternoon, good for his first career three-point game.

“He (McConnell-Barker) is a great player to have on your team,” Marlow said. “He’s easy to play with for anybody. He’s a good heads up player and we’re very lucky to have him this season.”

Lumberjacks goaltender Matteo Gennaro gave up 4 goals on 31 shots in the loss while Thunderbirds netminder and Soo Greyhounds 2022 2nd round pick Landon Miller made 32 saves for the win.

The Thunderbirds, who are now winners of three straight, will be back in action on Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m., when they will take on the Blind River Beavers at the John Rhodes.

(Photo credit to Bob Davies)

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