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Eagles edge Express in shootout

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – A Riley Jensen goal, coming in the fourth round of the shootout, proved to be the decider as the Soo Eagles edged the Espanola Express 3-2 in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up Saturday at Pullar Stadium.

It was the visiting Express that got on track first as they notched the lone tally of the opening 20 minutes compliments of Lukas Lyszyk, who collected his 10th of the season at 10:48.

The Eagles got that back though 98 seconds into the middle session as Caleb Wood collected his 16th to knot the affair at 1-1.

Espanola came back to regain the lead once more as Lyszyk added another for the visitors at 4:02 only to see Dominic Skrelja come right back Sault Ste. Marie on the next shift to tie things up once more.

It remained scoreless from there throughout the rest of regulation and the five-minute overtime to send it to extra shots to decide a winner.

In the shootout, both Skrelja and Lyszyk both notched nice goals for their respective sides among the first three attempts by each team.

Then after an Eagles goaltender Shane Brancato thwarted a fourth Express shooter, Jensen came in on his chance and roofed a shot into the top of the net to give Sault Ste. Marie their fourth straight victory of 2019.

Brancato finished with 26 saves to pick up the win for the Soo while Andrew Rocha’s 43 stops helped the Express earn a point in defeat.