Sunday Highlights: Firebirds cap fun weekend in Flint
FLINT 6, SAULT STE. MARIE 4
Defencemen Vladislav Kolyachonok (1) and Michael Bianconi (1) each scored their first OHL goals as the Flint Firebirds won on a second straight day, this time defeating the visiting Soo Greyhounds 6-4. Jake Durham (25, 26) scored twice and added an assist while Ty Dellandrea had four helpers. Riley McCourt (5) and Eric Uba (15) also lit the lamp as Flint defeated West Division-leading Sault Ste. Marie for the second time this season. 2019 NHL Draft prospect Kolyachonok earned first star honours with a goal and three assists in the win while goaltender Luke Cavallin stopped 36 of 40. Defencemen accounted for three of Sault Ste. Marie’s four goals as Jordan Sambrook (13), Mac Hollowell (13) and Ryan O’Rourke (5) joined Ryan Roth (13) on the scoresheet while newcomer Jaden Peca registered two assists. Sault Ste. Marie outshot Flint 40-32 and went 2-for-4 on the power play while the Firebirds were 3-for-6 with the man advantage. Flint connects for a second straight win, improving to 7-32-2-0 while Sault Ste. Marie falls to 24-10-4-1, just one point up on second place Saginaw in the West Division.
ERIE 4, SARNIA 3 – OT
Kyle Maksimovich (22, 23) beat the buzzer, scoring his second of the night with 0.6 seconds left in overtime to complete an Erie Otters 4-3 comeback win over visiting Sarnia. Maksimovich, who also scored on a second period shorthanded penalty shot, climbs past Taylor Raddysh and into seventh on the Otters’ all-time goal scoring list with the 102nd and 103rd of his OHL career. Down 3-2, rookie defenceman Jamie Drysdale (3) tied things up with 4:54 left in the third period, setting the stage for Maksimovich to score his unassisted game winner. Daniel Singer (11) also scored for Erie while Gera Poddubnyi had two assists and Daniel Murphy made 30 saves. Hugo Leufvenius (24), Ryan McGregor (15) and Franco Sproviero (14) scored for Sarnia as the Sting earned a point, dropping their third overtime loss in the last four games. Erie improves to 16-21-1-1, three points back of fourth place Kitchener in the Midwest Division. Sarnia falls to 18-16-5-2.
NIAGARA 6, HAMILTON 5 – SO
Another spirited K-9 Cup bout saw the Niagara IceDogs and host Hamilton Bulldogs go down to the last shot where Vegas Golden Knights prospect Ben Jones sealed the deal in a 6-5 Niagara shootout road win. 2019 NHL Draft prospect Philip Tomasino (18, 19) scored his second of the game with just 20 seconds left in the third period to tie things at five and force overtime and a shootout where the IceDogs skated off with the extra point. Jacob Paquette (3), Jones (20) and Andrew Bruder joined Tomasino with Niagara goals in regulation while Stephen Dhillon made 33 saves including a penalty shot denial of Matthew Strome in the second period. Arthur Kaliyev (30, 31) recorded a fourth straight multi-point outing for Hamilton with two goals and two assists while Strome (16, 17) had two goals and a helper and Brandon Saigeon (25) also capitalized. The Bulldogs earn a single point, managing to earn at least one for a fifth straight game as they sit fourth in the East Division with an 18-18-3-1 record. Niagara gets back in the win column, increasing its Central Division lead to seven points with a 23-9-6-0 record.
NORTH BAY 5, GUELPH 2
A four-goal second period powered the North Bay Battalion to a 5-2 road win in Guelph, giving them their seventh victory in the past eight games. Christian Propp was a difference-maker turning aside 46 shots as the Troops took two points despite being bombarded 48-24 on the shot clock. Sophomore forward Brandon Coe (8, 9) scored twice and added an assist while Mason Primeau (10) scored against his former club. Matthew Struthers (19) and Nick King (6) rounded out North Bay’s scoring summary while defenceman Braden Henderson had a pair of helpers. Former Battalion first round pick Zach Poirier (7) joined Isaac Ratcliffe (23) on the scoresheet for Guelph while MacKenzie Entwistle, Markus Phillips and Fedor Gordeev made their Storm debuts. The Battalion improves to 19-18-1-2, four points back of second place Sudbury in the Central Division. Guelph drops a third straight decision, falling to 19-12-3-4.
SAGINAW 2, SUDBURY 0
Arizona Coyotes prospect Ivan Prosvetov turned in his finest performance of the season, stopping all 54 shots he faced to backstop the Saginaw Spirit over visiting Sudbury 2-0. Prosvetov’s 54 saves are the most in a shutout by an OHL goaltender since Sudbury’s Alain Valiquette made 57 back in March 2011. The Spirit earn their sixth straight win, pulling to within one point of the West Division-leading Soo Greyhounds as DJ Busdeker (10) and Ryan McLeod (13) both scored. Sudbury outshot Saginaw 54-30 as Wolves netminder Jake McGrath earned second star honours with a 28-save showing. While the 24-11-2-2 Spirit earn their sixth straight win, the Wolves suffer a seventh straight loss. The Wolves, who haven’t won since Finnish World Junior gold medalist Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen left for Vancouver, still sit second in the Central Division with a 21-14-2-1 record.
BARRIE 3, KINGSTON 2
Buffalo Sabres prospect Matej Pekar (9, 10) scored the last minute game winner as the Barrie Colts skated to a 3-2 victory in Kingston. Pekar’s second of the afternoon came with 53 seconds left in the third period, helping the Colts best the Frontenacs despite being outshot 44-31. Rookie netminder Jet Greaves turned aside 42 shots for the win while Nathan Allensen (2) also scored for the Colts. Ian Derungs (7) and Dawson Baker (5) had goals for the Frontenacs while newcomer Nick Wong picked up an assist in his Kingston debut. Marshall Frappier made 28 saves in his first start as a Frontenac as Kingston dropped a fifth straight decision, falling to 11-28-1-0. Frontenacs veteran Matt Hotchkiss became the first OHL player this season to appear in his 300th career regular season game.
OTTAWA 7, OSHAWA 4
Veterans Austen Keating (13, 14) and new OHL scoring leader Tye Felhaber (44) each had four points while rookie Jack Quinn (8, 9) scored twice, leading the Ottawa 67’s past visiting East Division opponent Oshawa by a score of 7-4. Tied at three midway through the second period, Quinn struck shorthanded before burying on the power play six minutes later for the eventual game winner as Ottawa won for the seventh time in the past 10, improving to 29-7-3-1. Noel Hoefenmayer (11) and Graeme Clarke (13) also scored for the 67’s while Marco Rossi collected three assists in his second game back from injury. Cedrick Andree stopped 29 of the 33 shots that came his way as Oshawa’s Allan McShane (16, 17) scored twice while Brett Neumann (26) scored his first as a General and Danil Antropov (11) also touched twine. The Generals fall to 23-15-2-0, slipping 14 points back of the first place 67’s in the East Division.
WINDSOR 7, KITCHENER 1
The Windsor Spitfires struck for seven goals on 28 shots, trouncing the visiting Kitchener Rangers 7-1. Daniel D’Amico (16), Jean-Luc Foudy (2), Mathew MacDougall (9), Nathan Staios (2), Luke Boka (5) and Tyler Angle (11) all had a goal and an assist while Chase Campbell (6) found the back of the net against his former club. Louka Henault, Kyle McDonald and Jordan Frasca each had two assists and Kari Piiroinen stopped 26 of the 27 shots that came his way. Greg Meireles (17) scored the lone Kitchener goal 2:50 into the third period, ending Piiroinen’s shutout bid. Windsor has now won three straight, improving to 18-19-2-1 while Kitchener has lost the last two, falling to 17-19-3-0.
PETERBOROUGH 7, MISSISSAUGA 4
Chris Paquette (17, 18) and Brady Hinz (12, 13) both scored twice as the Peterborough Petes tallied seven times on 33 shots to take a 7-4 road win in Mississauga. Liam Kirk (14), Nick Robertson (14) and Chad Denault (4) also had goals while Ryan Merkley and Adam Timleck each picked up two assists and goaltender Hunter Jones made 42 saves. Keean Washkurak (8), Liam Ham (5) and Alan Lyszczarczyk (20) all had a goal and an assist for the Steelheads while Cole Carter (25) also found the back of the net. Peterborough managed to win despite being outshot 46-33 but went 3-for-7 on the power play while holding the Steelheads to an 0-for-5 mark. The Petes improve to 22-16-0-1, three points back of second place Oshawa in the East Division. Mississauga falls to 18-17-3-1.