KIRKLAND LAKE, Ont. – The Soo Thunderbirds got a goal and two assists from defenceman Caleb Boman to help lead them to a 5-1 victory over the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners Thursday in Game 4 of the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League Copeland Cup – McNamara Trophy championship series at the Joe Mavrinac Community Complex.
Sault Ste. Marie now leads the best-of-seven championship 3-0 and will have an opportunity to capture their second consecutive NOJHL title Friday when Game 4 goes Friday back in Kirkland Lake at 7:30 p.m.
It was close through one period of play as neither side would score in the first frame.
The Gold Miners did open the scoring 71 seconds into the middle session with Marc-Antoine Arseneau notching his fourth of the playoffs.
The Thunderbirds drew level 10 and a half minutes later however with Adam McPhail beating Kirkland Lake starter Joe Marcouiller.
Jaren Bellini collected the eventual game-winner with 2:06 left in the second as the Soo took the lead for good.
Action in the third period saw the T-Birds put the game away by tallying three times to secure the win.
Matthew Caruso, Matthew Mitchell and Boman accounted for the Soo goals in the session.
Connor Ryckman made 19 saves to record the decision for the Thunderbirds while Marcouiller saw 27 shots in defeat for the Gold Miners.
For the Copeland Cup – McNamara Trophy
Soo Thunderbirds vs. Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Sault Ste. Marie leads best-of-seven series 3-0
Game 1: Sault Ste. Marie 3 Kirkland Lake 0
Game 2: Sault Ste. Marie 3 Kirkland Lake 1
Game 3: Sault Ste. Marie 5 Kirkland Lake 1
Game 4: Friday, April 22 @ Kirkland Lake 7 p.m. (Joe Mavrinac Community Complex)
Game 5*: Sunday, April 24 @ Sault Ste. Marie 7:30 p.m. (Essar Centre)
Game 6*: Tuesday, April 26 @ Kirkland Lake 7 p.m. (Joe Mavrinac Community Complex)
Game 7*: Thursday, April 28 @ Sault Ste. Marie 7:30 p.m. (Essar Centre)
*- if necessary