Simonson strikes in OT as Thief River Falls gets past Thunder Bay

THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn. – A Parker Simonson goal 49 seconds into overtime was the difference as the Thief River Falls Norskies rallied for a 3-2 victory over the Thunder Bay North Stars Saturday in Superior International Junior Hockey League action at Ralph Engelstad Arena.

Brendan Gillis staked Thunder Bay to the lead 15 and a half minutes into the contest as he notched his first marker of the season.

Thief River Falls drew level in the final minute of the first period when Mitchell Soderberg finished off the work of Simonson and Michael Johnson with the latter earning assists on all three goals his club provided.

After a scoreless second stanza, the North Stars went back in front midway through the third on a Dillon Ward effort.

Battling back again the home side forced OT with 2:25 left in regulation as Jared Pedersen tied it during a late man advantage marker.

Having the power play to begin extra time after a skirmish at the end of the third, Simonson won it early as he took a perfect cross-crease pass from Pederson and roofed the game-winner over a sprawled Dougie Newhouse in the North Stars net.

Brock Levfebre was solid between the pipes for Thief River Falls making 47 saves overall as the league-leading Norskies improved to 6-0 on the season.

Newhouse was equally sharp in defeat for Thunder Bay as he saw 48 shots fired his way in his SIJHL debut for the North Stars who fell to 2-1-1.

Photo credit: Allison Garrigan