The Thunderbirds wrap up their East Division trip with a shutout on the French River

(Photo by Thunderbirds goaltender Noah Metiver credit to Bob Davies)

A good defense and a good goalie win hockey games!

Just ask the Soo Thunderbirds.

After opening their three-game East Division road trip with a 3-1 victory at Kirkland Lake on Friday, followed by a 3-1 win at Powassan on Saturday, the Soo Thunderbirds concluded their three-game East Division road trip. Is with a 6-0 win over the French River Rapids at the Noelville Community Center on Sunday afternoon in Noelville.

The Thunderbirds, who shut out the Rapids 6-0 on Sunday afternoon, also extended their winning streak to eight games.

“Today’s game was quick and closer than the score indicated,” said Soo Thunderbirds head coach Cole Jarrett, whose team led 2-0 for forty minutes. before scoring four more goals in the third period. “We got another solid performance from our goalkeeper. Métivier came in big while the game was still close at hand.

During that three-game East Division road trip, the Thunderbirds recorded a total of 102 shots on net while giving up just 55 shots against.

Friday night in Kirkland Lake, the Thunderbirds allowed a record 12 shots against in their 3-1 win over the Gold Miners.

Then, on Saturday night in Powassan, the Thunderbirds gave up just 16 shots in their 3-1 victory over the Voodoos.

And Sunday afternoon in Noelville, the Thunderbirds faced a total of 27 shots and shut out the French River Rapids 6-0.

So in this weekend’s three-game road trip, the Thunderbirds only allowed a total of 2 goals.

“Like I said last night, as a group we’re committed to being tough when we don’t have the puck,” Jarrett said. “That did a lot to keep our targets low.”

On Sunday afternoon, the Thunderbirds got multi-point performances from four different players, including Dharan Cap, Youssef Chaouachi, Andrew Gibson and Cole Delarosbil.

Cap scored two goals, including one on the power play.

Chaouachi and Gibson had a goal and an assist each while Delarosbil added two assists.

“Thanks to those guys for their multi-point effort, but today was just a good team effort,” Jarrett said. “The boys were mentally and physically tired at the end of this three-game road trip, but they found a way to get the job done and it took everyone.”

Delarosbil’s two-assist performance on Sunday afternoon also turned out to be his first career two-assist game.

The Sault Ste. Marie, a native of Ontario, who started Sunday afternoon’s game with 9 points, also gave herself her 10th and 11th points of the season.

“It was really good to contribute to today’s win,” Delarosbil said. “The guys have been playing solid and working together lately. Getting the weekend sweep has kept team spirits up and we’re looking to continue the streak.

Michael Chaffay and Kenny Belanger Jr. had one goal each for the Thunderbirds while Mason Chitaroni, Cooper Foster, Kyle Trottier, Ethan Novello and Brock Santa Maria all contributed one assist each.

Rapids goaltender Cole Sheffield allowed 6 on 39 shots in the loss while Thunderbirds rookie goaltender Noah Metiver made 27 saves for his third shutout of the season.

Metiver, who recorded his 3rd shutout of the season, also tied with Greater Sudbury Cubs goaltender Joel Rainville for the league lead in shutouts.

“It’s unreal to be a rookie goaltender in this league with 3 shutouts, but I couldn’t have done it this afternoon without my team,” Metiver said. “They fought hard for me and we got the job done together.”

The Thunderbirds, who now have 6 of a possible 6 points this weekend on the road, will now be back on John Rhodes ice this Wednesday, March 2, when they face the Blind River Beavers, starting at 7:00 p.m.

From this Wednesday, crowds will also be allowed to return to 100% capacity.

“Quick comeback with BR coming in this Wednesday. They’re playing good hockey right now, so we’ll have to be up for the challenge,” Jarrett said.


On Sunday February 27, the Soo Thunderbirds shut out the French River Rapids 6-0 at the Noelville Community Center in Noelville.


The last time the Rapids lost by shutout at home was Nov. 25, 2018, when they were shut out by the Cochrane Crunch 2-0.


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