SUDBURY, Ont. – The Thunder Bay Dairy Farmers Kings are returning home from the 40th annual Big Nickel tournament in Sudbury as champions in the peewee division.
Thunder Bay defeated the previously unbeaten North Central Predators from Orillia 3-1 in the title game Sunday afternoon.
After a scoreless first period in the final, the Kings opened the scoring late in the middle stanza on a Luke Kluchkowsky effort.
They then went up by a pair early in the third compliments of Easton Mikus.
After the Predators came back to pull within a moment later, Nicholas Silvaggio secured the victory with 72 seconds remaining.
Chase Furlong picked up the win in goal making 31 saves to earn the victory.
Earlier in the day, Thunder Bay blanked the Grey-Bruce Highlanders 3-0 in the semifinals thanks to Furlong’s 20-save shutout.
That contest was without a goal until the third period when Silvaggio tallied twice and Mikus added a single in triumph.
In round robin play, the Kings finished third overall among the six sides competing in the peewee group.
There, they defeated the Markham Majors and the Nickel City Sons by scores of 4-1 and 5-1 respectively while falling 5-3 to North Central and suffering a narrow 3-2 setback vs. the Brampton 45’s.
The Kings’ Matthew Bertolin shared the overall lead in Big Nickel scoring with 10 points in six outings on a trio of tallies and seven assists.
Also cracking the Top 10 in offensive numbers were Carter Poddubny and Silvaggio with five points apiece.
Thunder Bay is right back on the tournament trail this coming weekend as they head down Highway 61 to compete in the Gales of November event in Duluth, Minn.
Photo credit: Gino Donato