By Matt Stefano
Saturday night marked a battle of the first and second place teams in the West Division, as the Soo Thunderbirds took on the Elliot Lake Wildcats, who were five points behind them in the standings.
The Thunderbirds went on to their tenth straight victory as they blanked the Elliot Lake Wildcats 6-0 on Halloween night.
“It feels good, we were just trying to get in there, get the two points and do our job,” said Darian Pilon, who led the way with two goals and an assist. “Play it easy, play it simple and just get the job done in the end.”
Pilon, who had two goals including a shorthanded unassisted one at 12:46 of the second, was named the game’s first star.
“It felt pretty good,” continued Pilon. “The team got some points so that’s all that really matters.”
With ten straight victories, the Thunderbirds will now get set to head on the road for six straight.
“Hard work and practice this week,” concluded Pilon. “Keep it up tempo, keep it up pace, do our jobs, do the little things and prepare for the weekend.”
T-Birds leading scorer Matt Pinder had a goal and an assist while Brett Jeffries also had a two point night with a pair of assists. Jaren Bellini, Matt Caruso (power play) and Zach Senecal all got on the scoreboard a goal each while single assists went to Jake Behse, Brandon Grandinetti, Matt Busby, Caleb Boman and Andrew Barbeau.
Grandinetti, who had one assist on Saturday night, also played in his 100th career NOJHL game.
T-Birds overage goalie Nathan Warren made 20 saves for his second shutout of the season.
Allan Menary, who got the start in net for Elliot Lake, gave up 3 goals on 12 shots before being replaced by Aaron MacKay at 16:33 of the first period. Mackay gave up 3 goals on 21 shots the rest of the way.
The T-Birds will be in Kirkland Lake on Friday, November 6th at 7:30 p.m. against the Gold Miners from the Joe Mavrinac Community Complex.
NOTE: All T-Bird pink game worn jerseys from Saturday’s “Pink In The Rink” game will be auctioned on the Soo Thunderbirds Facebook page next week.