The OHL Weekend Notebook recaps the weekend that was with news, information and interesting facts from both on and off the ice. Here are 10 of the leading stories from this past weekend.
Sting turn things around with 3-0 weekend
Things are suddenly looking up for the Sarnia Sting.
After an 0-7 start the Sting were sparked by a 49-save OHL debut from rookie goaltender Ben Gaudreau on Thursday night in Barrie as that 5-1 victory was followed by two more wins. Sarnia defeated the CHL’s top-ranked Oshawa Generals 9-5 on the road Friday night, handing them their first loss of the season after a 9-0 start. They returned home to defeat the Kingston Frontenacs 7-4 on Sunday.
Overage winger Sean Josling and Carolina Hurricanes prospect Jamieson Rees carried the offence, with the former putting up multi-point efforts in all three contests for 11 points (6-5–11) while Rees recorded 10 points (4-6–10). Recently added winger Ryan Roth has also given the Sarnia offence a shot in the arm with 10 points (5-5–10) through five games with the new club.
Veteran Sting captain Ryan McGregor also returned to the lineup on Sunday, recording a goal and an assist in his season debut.
Petes take down another top-ranked team for third straight win
The Peterborough Petes have played to a 9-3 record to begin the season, doing so with a pretty tough schedule.
Not only did the Petes play nine straight on the road to start the season, they’ve managed to beat a number of highly touted teams in the opening month of the season including nationally top-ranked teams in London, Ottawa and most recently Oshawa.
Minnesota Wild prospect Hunter Jones backstopped the Petes to a 3-0 weekend, earning OHL ‘On the Run’ Player of the Week honours for his efforts as he posted a 1.67 goals-against average and .943 save percentage in wins over divisional foes Hamilton, Ottawa and Oshawa.
Winnipeg Jets blueliner Declan Chisholm is on an 11-game point streak, sitting tied for third among OHL defencemen with 15 points (1-14–15). Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Nick Robertson leads Peterborough in scoring with 20 points (12-8–20) over 12 games.
Spirit climb West Division with perfect week
The Saginaw Spirit claimed victories over Sault Ste. Marie, North Bay and Kitchener this past week, rising to first in the West Division with an 8-4-1-0 record.
Saginaw’s big unit of Cole Perfetti, Cole Coskey and Damien Giroux came alive as Perfetti led the way with 10 points (3-7–10) over the three wins, rising to third in league scoring with 24 points (5-19–24) in 13 games.
Spirit netminder Tristan Lennox, who turns 17 on Monday, also showed well over the weekend, going 2-0 with at least 30 saves in each win. Marshall Frappier has played to a 3-0 record since being acquired by Saginaw last month.
Spirit captain Giroux leads the team in the goal-scoring department as the Minnesota Wild prospect has lit the lamp 12 times.
Firebirds stay perfect at home in franchise-best 7-3 start
Are the Flint Firebirds the real deal? The way they’ve played so far this season seems to indicate they are.
The ‘Birds rebounded from a 7-5 loss in Windsor on Thursday to defeat the Kitchener Rangers 4-3 in overtime on Friday night, returning home to defeat the North Bay Battalion 6-3 and improve to 4-0 on the season at the Dort Federal Event Center.
Firebirds GM Barclay Branch recently added another former OHL champion in defenceman Owen Lalonde from the Guelph Storm while first-year winger Evgeniy Oksentyuk has lived up to his fifth overall CHL Import Draft billing, leading the team with 14 points (4-10–14) over 10 games.
Florida Panthers prospect Vladislav Kolyachonok had a productive weekend from the blue line, scoring three times as he provided Friday night’s overtime winner in Kitchener.
The Firebirds prepare for back-to-back home dates against Sudbury and Soo on Friday and Saturday.
Attack down Wolves for fifth straight win
The Owen Sound Attack is rolling right along, defeating the Sudbury Wolves 4-1 on Saturday for their fifth straight win.
The Bears have scored at least four goals in six straight games, spreading the offence around as eight different players have at least three goals on the campaign. Captain and Los Angeles Kings prospect Aidan Dudas leads the way with 13 points (3-10–13) while goaltender Mack Guzda has been among the league’s best with a 2.73 goals-against average and .910 save percentage over his nine appearances.
Owen Sound prepares to face Barrie on Thursday before returning home to host North Bay on Saturday.
Harley doing big things in Mississauga
Unlike a lot of clubs this season, the offence in Mississauga has often started from the back end.
Dallas Stars prospect Thomas Harley enjoyed a pair of multi-point outings this past weekend as the Steelheads defeated the Niagara IceDogs and Erie Otters. Harley has points in each of his eight games this season for a total of 15 (5-10–15).
After coming out of the gate 0-4, the Steelheads have managed to stabilize things, hovering around the middle of the Central Division with a 4-6-0-0 record.
67’s lose Clarke, gain Okhotyuk and Garreffa
The Ottawa 67’s split a pair of weekend matchups, falling to the Peterborough Petes on Friday before rebounding to defeat the Hamilton Bulldogs 5-4 in overtime on Sunday.
Overage defenceman Noel Hoefenmayer potted his first OHL hat-trick to headline Sunday’s contest while Marco Rossi had assists on all five goals.
The 67’s learned they’ll be without New Jersey Devils prospect Graeme Clarke up front for at least four months after the third-year winger injured his shoulder in a goal celebration last weekend. In his absence, overage acquisition Joseph Garreffa stepped into the lineup and scored his first goal of the season along with two assists on Sunday.
Ottawa also saw the return of another Devils prospect in defenceman Nikita Okhotyuk who made his season debut on Friday.
Kaliyev with 10 goals in his last five games
As many predicted he would be this season, returning 51-goal scorer Arthur Kaliyev has been an offensive machine for the Hamilton Bulldogs.
The 6-foot-2, 190Ib winger has a league-leading 14 goals over his first 12 games of the season and is in the midst of a five-game scoring streak.
The 18-year-old Los Angeles Kings prospect leads the OHL in shots on goal with 67 and has produced nine of his 25 points on the man advantage. He sits two points back of Sudbury’s Quinton Byfield for the league scoring lead.
Foudy returns to Knights lineup
Columbus Blue Jackets prospect Liam Foudy is back to full health after spending the past several weeks recovering from an injury sustained at the Traverse City Prospects Tournament.
Foudy re-joined the Knights this past weekend, scoring in each of his two games as London lost to Windsor before bouncing back to defeat Kingston on Saturday.
Foudy, who has been named to Team OHL’s roster for the 2019 CIBC Canada Russia Series coming up next month, comes off a 36-goal season in London last year. The 19-year-old was Columbus’ first round (18th overall) pick in 2018.
Fronts, Troops have tough weekends on the road
Two of the league’s younger squads in the Kingston Frontenacs and North Bay Battalion both returned home pointless from weekend excursions.
After a home loss to Hamilton on Friday, the Fronts fell 6-3 in London on Saturday and 7-4 in Sarnia on Sunday. Kingston made goaltending changes in both of their Saturday and Sunday losses but managed to outshoot the Sting 37-17 on Sunday.
The Battalion surrendered a total of 26 goals over losses in Saginaw, Flint and Sault Ste. Marie. The Troops were without rookie goaltender Joe Vrbetic but they didn’t score much either as Matthew Struthers accounted for three of the team’s six goals on the weekend.