Photos: Sudbury Light Event Photography
SUDBURY, Ont. – A solid road effort backed by 35 saves by netminder Patrick Boivin and goals from four different skaters lifted the Espanola Express to a 4-2 triumph over the Greater Sudbury Clubs in a boisterous Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League affair Thursday at Gerry McCrory Countryside Sports Complex.
Picking up the night’s initial power play, Espanola opened the scoring 6:48 into the contest when Giovanni Perillo notched his first NOJHL goal by banging in a loose puck from the side of the net after Nicholas Toffoli cranked a shot that bounced off the end boards and came out the other side, right to the Express forward.
Coming right back, the visitors added another as Jack Thor also scored his first in the league when he picked off a pass and darted between a pair of Cubs’ defencemen, then made a quick move to his left before snapping one past Great Sudbury’s Joel Rainville.
Trading tallies early in the second stanza, Owen Harris converted from close range for his first NOJHL goal to make it 3-0 for the Express.
However, Greater Sudbury’s Kyler Campbell clicked less than a minute later for his league-leading 10th marker of the campaign at 1:39 as he also extended a consecutive game point streak to 12, which dates back to last season when he was a member of the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners.
Campbell has also now scored in five straight outings.
Answering that, Kobe Braham was sent in alone on a breakaway from just inside the Espanola zone and as he flew down the ice he made a nice deke to his right and tucked one between Rainville’s legs and in to make it 4-1 with still over a half a game to play.
With Jake Marois coming in to take over the net for the Cubs after that, the score remained that way into the second intermission.
In the third, the Cubs got one back with 6:07 remaining as Alexander Dillon knocked one in from the top of the crease, during a man advantage opportunity.
Express starter Boivin held firm from there though to record the victory.
Rainville suffered the defeat, allowing four on 15 chances while Marois stopped each of the seven shots he saw in relief.