By Matt Stefano
After doubling up the Blind River Beavers by a score of 4-2 in the opening game of the West Division Semifinal series back on Saturday night at the John Rhodes, the Soo Thunderbirds were right back in action twenty four hours later on St. Patrick’s Day as they were looking to go up two games to none.
The Thunderbirds took a 2-0 series lead on Sunday night at the John Rhodes as they doubled up the Blind River Beavers by a score of 6-3.
“The whole team worked hard tonight,” said Thunderbirds forward Matthew Bazarin. “We got pucks in deep and had a lot of shots on net. We kept grinding it out and made chances happen.”
Bazarin was named second star of the game with two goals, including one on the power play.
“I’m happy I had a good night offensively again,” continued Bazarin. “I want to help out as much as I can, but I’m having a lot of help from my teammates and they’re really fun to play with.”
Defenceman Steven Bellini led the way offensively for the Thunderbirds on Sunday night, setting up three goals and earning first star of the game.
“He’s the kind of player who can be chippy and will get pucks in deep,” continued Bazarin. “He’ll even rush when he has to and his IQ really helps our team to make us win.”
Third year forward Nick Smith was named third star of the game with a power play goal and an assist while Lucas Theriault, Spencer Van Tiem (game winner) and Nolan Ford (empty net) had the other goals for the Soo.
Forward Noah Boman set up two goals for the Thunderbirds on Sunday night while Kobe Seguin and Brendan Miller chipped in with one assist each.
Caleb Serre and Sooite Justin Mauro had a power play goal and an assist each for the Beavers while Nash Hatcher also got on the scoresheet with one goal.
Ryan Peck, Matthew Murray and Ethan Graham all chipped in with one assist each for the Beavers.
Beavers goaltender Garrett Boyonoski gave up five goals on thirty five shots in the loss while Thunderbirds netminder Colin Ahern made thirty four stops for the victory.
The Thunderbirds will now get set for game 3 of the West Division Semifinal series, which will be held in Blind River on Tuesday night at 7:00 p.m. at the Blind River Community Centre.
“It won’t be easy, because this team gives us a hard go and we just have to keep going at them and keep grinding,” concluded Bazarin.
(Photo credit to Rod Aubertin/www.ssmphotos.com)