By Matt Stefano
After defeating the Elliot Lake Wildcats 6-4 at Centennial Arena on Friday night in their first road game of the month of February, the Soo Thunderbirds scored another six times on Sunday afternoon in Espanola as they doubled up the Express 6-3 at Espanola Regional Recreation Complex.
The T-Birds took a 2-0 lead after the first period, getting a couple of late goals with under five minutes to go.
Defenceman Alec Allen got his second goal of the season at 15:21 from Gage Stephney and Noah Solinger to put the Soo up 1-0.
Just 2:05 later, it would be overage forward Ryan Waterhouse getting his fourteenth from Keenan Eddy to put the Soo up by two.
Jason Bednarski’s sixth from Aaron Roschinsky just 2:20 into the second, cut the T-Birds lead to 2-1.
Overage forward Austin Kozluk became just the third T-Bird to hit the twenty goal plateau this season, with his twentieth at 6:56 from Zach Senecal and Matt Caruso, which put the Soo up by two once again.
Aaron Roschinsky would then get his twentieth goal of the season, with just 2:21 to go in the second from Mitchal Payette and Nick Salazar, cutting the T-Birds lead to 3-2 after forty minutes of action.
Zach Senecal’s twenty fifth goal of the season, just eighteen seconds into the third, gave the T-Birds their third two goal lead of the afternoon.
Austin Kozluk and Matt Caruso would draw the assists.
Caruso, who drew an assist on Senecal’s twenty fifth goal, gave the T-Birds captain thirty three assists on the season, passing his career-high assist total from 2015-2016, when he had thirty two.
Jason Bednarski’s second of the game at 6:20 from MacKenzie Aiken and Aaron Roschinsky, cut the T-Birds lead to one.
Zach Senecal put the T-Birds up 5-3 at 13:38, with his second goal of the game and twenty sixth of the season from Matt Caruso.
Caruso, who recorded his third assist of the afternoon on Senecal’s tally, turned out to be his second straight three assist game.
With just 5:05 to go in regulation time, it would be overage forward Sean Emmerson extending his goal scoring streak to three games, with his sixth of the season from Ryan Waterhouse and Keenan Eddy, giving the Soo their first three goal lead of the afternoon.
The T-Birds got their 34th win of the season against an Espanola Express team that had only fourteen players dressed for Sunday afternoon’s game.
Express goaltender Mitchell Jacobson gave up three goals on sixteen shots before being replaced in net by Logan Sawka, who then gave up three goals on thirty five shots the rest of the way.
T-Birds goaltender Dougie Newhouse made twenty nine saves for his tenth win of the season.
The T-Birds will return home on Sunday, February 12th at 2:00 p.m. to face the last place French River Rapids at the Essar Centre.
(Photo of Zach Senecal credit to James Egan’s Sports Photography)