It had been a long time between Northern Ontario Jr. Hockey League victories for the Michigan Soo Eagles.
In fact, the last time the Eagles won an NOJHL game was on Friday, March 6, 2020 when they scored a 2-1 road decision over the Espanola Express to sweep a best of three preliminary round playoff series.
Shortly after, the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in full force and hockey was shut down for the remainder of the 2019-2020 season.
Now, after having to sit out the 2020-2021 NOJHL season due to border closures relative to COVID-19, the Eagles returned to the win column on Saturday, September 25, 2021 with a 4-2 road triumph over Espanola.
Unable to play home games at Pullar Stadium in the Michigan Soo until the United States government gives clearance for Canadians to cross the border into the U.S., the Eagles will play all contests on the road in the time being.
At any rate, after dropping the opening game of this 2021-2022 regular season with a 4-0 road loss at Espanola, the Eagles rebounded the next day with the aforementioned 4-2 road victory.
St. Ignace, Michigan product Chase Tallaire, formerly of the under-18 Soo Indians, netted a pair of goals to spark the Eagles past the Express.
And between the pipes, Gabe Rosek made 35 stops to post the victory.
“It sure is nice to be playing a league game again,” Eagles general manager and assistant coach Bruno Bragagnolo told Hockey News North. “And it sure feels good to be able to come into Canada again. Hopefully our government will open the border on our (American) side soon and we can get back to playing home games at the Pullar.”