Thunderbirds blank Beavers and record second consecutive shutout

By Matt Stefano

After blanking the last place Elliot Lake Wildcats by a score of 7-0 back on Wednesday night at the John Rhodes Community Centre, the Soo Thunderbirds were back in action on Friday night in the Soo, for the first game of a home and home series against the Blind River Beavers.

The Thunderbirds picked up their second consecutive shutout on Friday night as they defeated the Beavers by a score of 4-0 at the John Rhodes Community Centre.

“It feels pretty good,” said Thunderbirds forward Colton Hayes, who had two goals and one assist. “We’re on a roll right now and we need to keep it going.”

Hayes second goal of the game, came on the man advantage at the 11:13 mark of the third period.

“Both goals felt good tonight and it’s nice to have some pucks go in the net,” said Hayes.

Thunderbirds forward Avery Rebek also had a three point game on Friday night, setting up three goals.

Rebek also extended his point streak to five games.

“Rebek has been really consistent these last few games,” said Hayes. “But everyone else on the team has been consistent as well.”

The Thunderbirds, who recorded their second straight shutout on Friday night, have now recorded back to back shutouts for the first time since the 2016-2017 season.

“I think our defensive game has really improved,” said Hayes. “Our goalies have been playing really well, and they work hard every week with our goalie coach.”

Captain Nolan Ford (power play) and Jordan Broome had the other goals for the Thunderbirds while Cooper Smyl, Dylan Parsons and Mackenzie Walkington all had one assist each.

Beavers goaltender Dominic Boily gave up 4 goals on 32 shots in the loss while Thunderbirds rookie netminder Sam Evola made 32 saves for his third shutout of the season.

Evola, who recorded his third shutout in just his ninth played game with the Thunderbirds since signing with them back in December, became the first Thunderbirds rookie goaltender to record three shutouts in a regular season since Dougie Newhouse did back in 2016-2017.

The Thunderbirds will now head to Blind River on Saturday for the second game of the home and home series against the Beavers.

“We just need to get some rest and stay consistent. We’ve been playing well the last five games and we’re just going to keep doing what we’re doing,” concluded Hayes.

(Photo credit to Bob Davies)

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