Pre-Season Pulse: Friday September 15th
SUDBURY 6, SAULT STE. MARIE 5
Overage defenceman Kyle Rhodes scored twice as the Sudbury Wolves held off a late Soo Greyhounds comeback bid for a 6-5 win on home ice. The back-and-forth affair featured two goals and two assists from Rhodes while Dawson Baker, Michael Pezzetta and Anthony Tabak each registered a goal and an assist. Down 5-2, the Greyhounds got a late second period marker from Philadelphia Flyers prospect Morgan Frost. Keeghan Howdeshell and Robert Calisti scored in the third, but the Hounds would come up just short. Marshall Frappier made 36 saves to record the win for Sudbury as the Wolves improve to 1-1-1 on the pre-season while the Greyhounds are 1-2-0.
WINDSOR 5, SARNIA 2
The defending Mastercard Memorial Cup champion Windsor Spitfires improved to 4-0-0 on the pre-season as overage captain Aaron Luchuk scored twice and added an assist in a 5-2 win over the visiting Sarnia Sting. The Spits jumped out to a 5-0 lead by the midway point of the game as Mathew MacDougall, Joseph Mizzi and Igor Larionov also found the back of the net. Defenceman Austin McEneny registered a pair of assists as Windsor scored three times on the power play and twice shorthanded. Sarnia had third period goals from Connor Schlichting and Hugo Leufvenius. The Spitfires took the shooting column 37-28 as goaltender Brock Baier made 26 saves. The Sting fall to 1-2-0 in exhibition play.
OTTAWA 4, KINGSTON 3 – SO
Graeme Clarke and Tye Felhaber built off strong performances in regulation with shootout goals in a 4-3 triumph over the visiting Kingston Frontenacs at CIH Arena in Rockland, Ont. Clarke, Ottawa’s first round (6th overall) pick in the 2017 OHL Priority Selection, scored a pair of goals while Felhaber tied the score up at three with 6:24 remaining in the third period. Cedrick Andree got the start for the Barber Poles, turning aside nine of 10 shots before giving way to recently acquired overage goaltender Olivier Tremblay who made 12 saves in addition to stops on Linus Nyman and Cody Morgan in the shootout. Tyler Burnie scored twice in the loss for the Fronts while Sam Field also made his way into the goal column. The 67’s improve to 1-1-0 in the pre-season while Kingston sits at 2-0-1.
KITCHENER 7, NIAGARA 5
The Kitchener Rangers prevailed in a rough n’ tumble affair in Beamsville, Ont., defeating the host Niagara IceDogs 7-5 behind a goal and four assists from Joseph Garreffa. Sophomore blueliner Giovanni Vallati pitched in with three assists while Luke Richardson got the win in goal. The Rangers fell behind 2-0 in the first frame on goals from Ondrej Machala (penalty shot) and Ian Martin. A flurry of four consecutive markers from Kyle Gentles, Dylan Seitz, Cole Carter and Eric Guest put the Blueshirts in the driver’s seat up 4-2 midway through the second. The IceDogs rallied when Machala potted his second of the night inside the final two minutes of the second and Danial Singer knotted the score at four midway through the third. Goals from Garreffa and Greg Meireles less than three minutes apart inside the final five minutes of the third would put the Rangers ahead for good. Niagara’s Elijah Roberts would score against his former club late before Riley Damiani put things out of reach into the empty net. The game saw a total of 15 power plays as the Rangers went 3-for-9 and the IceDogs went 2-for-6. Kitchener improves to 2-2-1 in pre-season play while Niagara is 0-3-0.
SAGINAW 6, FLINT 1
Both shorthanded on the back end, the Saginaw Spirit got the better of the Flint Firebirds on home ice as Blade Jenkins and Aidan Prueter each had three points in a 6-1 win. After a scoreless first, the Spirit took command in the second frame as Ben Badalamenti, Ryan Stepien, DJ Busdeker and Damien Giroux made the score 4-0 after 40 minutes. Kyle Bollers and Jenkins scored less than 30 seconds apart early in the third to make the score 5-0. Flint rookie Ethan Keppen provided the lone goal for the Firebirds 11:50 into the third period. Saginaw outshot Flint 37-23 as goaltenders Cameron Lamour and Brendan Bonello were both solid in the crease. The Spirit soar to a pre-season record of 2-0-1 while the Firebirds are 0-4-0.
LONDON 3, ERIE 1
Veteran netminder Tyler Johnson was solid, turning away 37 shots as the London Knights outlasted the visiting Erie Otters 3-1. Rookie defenceman Ryan Bangs, sophomore forward Josh Nelson and draft eligible rearguard Evan Bouchard provided offence for London as the Knights won despite being outshot 38-23. Overage winger Patrick Fellows’ fourth of the pre-season was the lone goal for Erie. The Knights improved to 2-1-0 on the pre-season before a crowd of 7,479 at Budweiser Gardens while Erie dropped to 2-2-0.