On February 25th in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario at the John Rhodes Centre, the second place (38-11-1-1) Soo Thunderbirds took on the ninth place (27-21-3-1) Elliot Lake Wildcats in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League west division action.
With Thunderbird Sean Emmerson looking to send the puck down the ice while heading off the ice for a line change, Wildcat netminder Justin Richer miscalculated the puck and ended up behind Richer to give the Soo a 1 – 0 lead at 2:50 of the opening period. Kaidan McDonald and Ryan Waterhouse had the assists on Emmerson’s seventh of the season. At 16:04 of the first, Gage Stephney fires the hosts second to give the Thunderbirds a 2 – 0 lead with Mike Winn and McDonald drawing the helpers on Stephney’s goal.
Austin Kozluk finds the back of Richer’s net at six minutes even to bring the Soo’s lead to 3 – 0 with Jake Behse and Alec Allen adding the contributors. McDonald and Nick Smith has the assists 7:38 into the final period to give the Thunderbirds a 4 – 0 shutout win over Elliot Lake. Thunderbird goaltender Brandon Gordon earned his fifth shutout of the season after turning away all 20 shots in the Soo’s 38th win of the season.
The Thunderbirds will host the seventh place Rayside Balfour Canadians on Tuesday February 28th at the John Rhodes Centre in a 7:00 p.m puck drop.