SAULT STE. Marie, Ont. – A goal nearly five minutes into the third period proved to be the difference maker as the Soo Thunderbirds won their fourth Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up in succession Tuesday, a 2-1 decision over the Espanola Express, at John Rhodes Community Centre.
Called off back on January 18 due to inclement weather, the two teams finally squared off on this night and saw Espanola take the lead nearly seven minutes into the contest on a Mattias Salem marker.
The tally for Salem helped him extend a consecutive game point streak to nine.
That held up until the latter stages of the second stanza when Sault Ste. Marie picked up the equalizer off the stick of Tyler Savard as his 14th of the campaign saw him score for a fourth straight outing.
Knotted at one entering the third period, Rylan Clemons collected his 12th since joining the club early last month as he gave the Thunderbirds the lead at 4:48.
In the late going, the Express pressed hard to try and tie it and force overtime, but the Soo held firm to extend the winning streak and improve to 10-2-1 in their past 13 games.
Dakota Meyer finished with 32 stops to record the victory while Joel Rainville faced 42 attempts in defeat.
Game Photos: Bob Davies