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Thunderbirds extend NOJHL final (4 photos)

The Soo Thunderbirds scored three times in the third period to force a sixth game in the NOJHL final

Battling for their playoff lives, the Soo Thunderbirds scored three times in the third period to extend the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League final.

Trailing the best-of-7 league final 3-1, the Thunderbirds beat the Hearst Lumberjacks 4-2 on Saturday night at the John Rhodes Community Centre and in the process, force a sixth game in the series on Monday night in Hearst.

With the Thunderbirds trailing 2-1, Spencer Van Tiem tied the game when he beat Lumberjacks goaltender Nic Tallarico from the right faceoff circle just under five minutes into the final period.

Lucas Theriault would get the eventual game-winner just past the midway point of the frame when he went to the net and redirected a pass from Brendan Miller from the right point to make it 3-2.

Miller sealed the win with 1:32 to go as he beat Tallarico from the left wing high short side.

Brady Caruso had the other goal for the Thunderbirds with a power play goal in the opening period.

Miller finished the night with a goal and two assists while Theriault and Van Tiem had one of each.

Tyler Malpass also had a pair of assists for the Thunderbirds.

With Colin Ahern out due to an injury suffered in game three, William Anderson got his second consecutive start in the series and made 29 saves.

Bradley Golant and Max Griffioen scored for the Lumberjacks.

Tallarico made 27 saves.

Puck drop for game six on Monday night in Hearst is set for 7 p.m.

If necessary, game seven would be back at the John Rhodes Community Centre on Wednesday night. The game is also a 7 p.m. puck drop.


Brad Coccimiglio

About the Author: Brad Coccimiglio

A graduate of Loyalist College’s Sports Journalism program, Brad Coccimiglio’s work has appeared in The Hockey News as well as online at in addition to regular freelance work with SooToday before joining the team full time.
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