SAULT STE. MARIE, Ont. – The Soo Thunderbirds saw Nick Smith score twice, including the game-winner, and dole out a pair of assists Saturday evening in a 5-2 triumph over the visiting Rayside-Balfour Canadians Saturday night in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League contest at John Rhodes Community Centre.
Smith gave Sault Ste. Marie an early lead before the game was two minutes old only to see Rayside-Balfour counter with markers from Jordan Spadafore, at even strength, and Evan Krassey, via the power play, to put the visitors up 2-1 after 20 minutes.
Following a scoreless middle stanza, Mark Tassone’s first since rejoining the club tied it for the Thunderbirds with 9:27 left in regulation.
They then got the eventual from Smith with 5:47 to go as he converted during a man advantage opportunity.
The Soo kept coming from there and got an insurance goal Alex Acosta 62 seconds later before Camryn Baber secured the win for the home side.
Tassone chipped in with two assists to go with his tally as he finished up with three points.
The Thunderbirds outshot the Canadians 46-28 overall with Brandon Gordon picking up the win and MacKenzie Savard the loss.
Photos courtesy of James Egan’s Sports Photography