GALLERY: Thunderbirds score 4 in 3rd to get past Rapids

SAULT STE. MARIE, Ont. – The Soo Thunderbirds broke open a third period tie by scoring four times in the frame to pull out a 7-4 triumph over the French River Rapids Saturday in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League play at John Rhodes Community Centre.

First period action saw each team score once with Adam Kusior putting French River on top at 2:20 before Sault Ste. Marie’s Brendan Miller tied it a couple shifts later.

Moving on to the middle frame the two clubs would connect twice to knot the affair at 3-3 after 40 minutes.

Kaidan McDonald gave the Thunderbirds their first lead 38 seconds into the session before Jacob Romano’s 10th knotted the affair for the Rapids at 8:17.

The back-and-forth match-up saw the Soo go up again at 13:50 thanks to Lucas Theriault only to see French River’s Alex Paul counter with a power play goal just over a minute later.

The Thunderbirds would eventually gain the upper hand in the final frame on power play markers a minute and nine seconds apart from Nick Smith and Robert Calisti.

The goal for Smith was his team-leading 25th of the season.

Levi Siau got one back for French River with 10:48 to go only to see Alex Acosta and Smith strike in the latter stages to secure the Soo triumph.

Calisti, Steven Bellini, Braden Robbins and Camaryn Baber had two assists each for the Soo while Christian Gaudreau chipped in with a couple of helpers for the Rapids.

Shots on goal in the contest favoured French River by a 31-25 count with Eric Schuch picking up the win and Andrew Rocha the loss.

Photos courtesy of  James Egan’s Sports Photography