Palmerio; Keller lead Eagles over Express

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – The Soo Eagles got three goals and an assist from Jacob Palmerio while Kobe Keller added a hat trick of his own to help send them past the Espanola Express 8-3 Saturday night in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League action at Pullar Stadium.

After skating to a 3-3 double overtime draw in Espanola Friday, Sault Ste. Marie set the tone early in this one skating out to a 3-0 lead before the contest was 10 minutes old on a single by Keller and a pair of tallies by Palmerio.

A power play in the opening moments of the middle frame helped the Express get on the board 67 seconds into the session on a Tristan Poissant man advantage effort.

Up a man themselves after that, Kellen Tharaldson connected for the Eagles at 2:59 to make it 4-1.

The back and forth period continued with Poissant adding his second of the stanza at 4:27 before Christian Bardarson scored on the power play for the Soo at 9:07 for his 26th goal of the season.

Joel Grandbois brought the Express closer early in the third, but the Eagles put the game away with a trio of unanswered tallies to secure the win compliments of Palmerio and two more courtesy of Keller to finish things off.

Mikey Butcher had three assists for the Soo in the win while Bardarson, Jake Saxton and Nick Techel and William Casey adding two assists.

Shane Brancato had 21 saves in a winning cause for the Eagles with Ryan Hale being peppered with 57 shots in his NOJHL debut for Espanola.