Photos: Justin Cairns
SAULT STE. MARIE, MI – Daniel Beaupre and Jacob Smith scored in the shootout as the Soo Thunderbirds edged the Soo Eagles 6-5 in a shootout during a see-saw battle between the Twin Soos on Friday night at the Pullar Stadium in front of 769 fans.
Jonathan Sonedecker had 1 goal and 2 assists for the Thunderbirds, while Darby McCarthy netted a pair of goals for the Eagles.
The Thunderbirds got on the board as Daniel Beaupre cashed in on a two-on-one as he rushed down the left wing and used his linemate as a decoy as he went upstairs on Anthony Zolezzi for a 1-0 lead. at 6:17.
The Eagles responded when Luke Russell just coming out of the penalty box hit Zach Sweitzer with a breakaway pass and he beat Thunderbirds goalie Maverick Fletcher which made it 1-1 at 9:12.
The Eagles took their first lead later in the first when Lane Janssen hit Jack Ohlund and he ripped a shot that beat Fletcher with made it 2-1 at 14:11.
Grayson Ebrahim countered for the Thunderbirds just over four minutes later as his quick release from the slot made it 2-2.
Callum McCauley gave the Thunderbirds the lead again as he beat Zolezzi from the right side of the slot at only 1:32 of the second period which made it 3-2.
The Eagles responded again as Darby McCarthy created a turnover at the Eagles blueline and the Montana product went in on a 2-on-1 and kept for himself going upstairs over Fletcher for his first goal since joining the Eagles at the January trade deadline from the Powassan Voodoos and made it 3-3 at 5:09 of the middle frame.
The Eagles got the lead later in the period when Sweitzer took a blast from high in the slot that eluded Fletcher which made it 4-3 Eagles at 13:20.
The Thunderbirds evened things up again as Kaden Dundas got a power play marker at 18:41. That late goal left the two teams tied 4-4 after 40 minutes.
In the third period, again it was a great individual effort by Darby McCarthy as he cut down the right side, drove the net and beat Fletcher with a backhand which made it 5-4 Eagles at 1:06.
The Thunderbirds again got the equalizer, this time with their second power play marker of the game as Jonathan Sonedecker his third at 3:34 of the third to make it 5-5 in the high-scoring affair.
After a few tense moments in overtime, the two teams were forced to have a shootout to decide the result of the game filled with lead changes.
Eagles Tyler Fortson and Landon Stevens could not solve Maverick Fletcher in the shootout, while Smith and Beaupre solved Zolezzi who did thwart Kaden Dundas with the opening shootout opportunity.
The win improves the Thunderbirds record to 27-12-2-1 for 57 points while the Eagles go to 24-15-1-2 for 51 points.