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Gold Miners collect win for new head coach with triumph over Eagles

KIRKLAND LAKE, Ont. – A pair of third period goals broke a 1-1 deadlock and lifted the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners to a 3-1 victory over the Soo Eagles in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League contest Saturday at Joe Mavrinac Community Complex.

In his debut behind the bench, interim Gold Miners head coach and general manager Kyle Smart earned the win in his first game guiding his new club after being appointed to the position earlier in the week.

Picking up the night’s first power play, Kirkland Lake took advantage to open the scoring at 16:19 of the opening frame when Jacob Hiltz notched his sixth goal of the season.

Up two-men deep into the middle stanza, the Eagles clicked to tie things up as Joel Brandinger converted to give him points in five straight outings.

Third period play saw the home side get the eventual difference maker 2:08 into the session that saw Caleb Thompson supply the eventual game-winner.

Kirkland Lake then added some insurance with just over two minutes remaining as A.J. Campbell provided some insurance and help the hosts pull out the triumph on home ice.

Gold Miners goaltender Kyle McNair finished with 38 stops as his solid performance earned himself the win.

Soo starter Shane Brancato faced 33 shots in defeat.