With the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League title behind them, the 2015 Copeland Cup McNamara Trophy champions Soo Thunderbirds began a new mission today in Fort Frances, Ontario. The T-Birds took to the ice at 3pm for a matinee match up vs the Dryden Ice Dogs who automatically got a birth into the Dudley Hewitt Cup Tournament after falling six games to the host team Fort Frances Lakers in the SIJHL finals.
T-Birds second year forward Brett Jeffries scored the opening goal of the Dudley Hewitt Cup Tournament just 2:48 into the first from Boris Katchouk to put the T-Birds up 1-0. Katchouk would then get a goal of his own at 4:11 unassisted to put the Soo up by two. Jaren Bellini would make it a 3-0 game at 8:39 from Anthony Miller and Nick Tassone. After three goals in the first 8:39 of the first period, Dryden would get on the board at 10:39 courtesy of Matt Houston’s goal from Nick Eytcheson and Jonathan Philley. Matt Pinder’s unassisted tally at 13:14 gave the Soo a 4-1 lead after one.
Joey Miller’s goal just 2:05 into the second gave the T-Birds a 5-1 cushion from Caleb Boman. Matt Pinder’s second of the game on the power play just 3:17 later put the Soo up 6-1 from Brett Jeffries, spelling the end of Ice Dogs goaltender Tate Sporxton’s afternoon after giving up six goals on twenty one shots and was replaced by Chase Gorman. The scoring didn’t stop there though as Devin Shell made it a 7-1 game at 13:24 from Matt Mitchell and Owen Headrick.
With the T-Birds leading 7-1 heading into the third, it would be Matt Mitchell getting his first of the tournament at 13:38 from Jaren Bellini and Devin Shell as the T-Birds went on to beat the Dryden Ice Dogs by an 8-1 score. T-Birds netminder Brian Kment made twenty two stops for the victory.
Next up for the T-Birds will be the host Fort Frances Lakers tomorrow night at 7:30 from the Ice For Kids Arena.