NORTHERN ONTARIO JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE
Release Date: Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012
Double OT highlights NOJHL action Saturday
SUDBURY – What a night in the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League Saturday as all three games on the slate required double overtime to determine a winner with the Soo Thunderbirds, Sudbury Nickel Barons and North Bay Trappers all skating away with victories.
SOO THUNDERBIRDS 4 KIRKLAND LAKE GOLD MINERS 3 (2 OT) – Brandon Warmington’s goal 2:39 into the second overtime session was the difference as the hometown Thunderbirds rallied to edge the visiting Gold Miners at Essar Centre.
Kirkland Lake stormed out to a 2-0 lead after one period of play thanks to tallies by Connor McNally and Alex Perrault.
The defending NOJHL champion T-Birds responded before the midway mark of the middle stanza to level the proceedings with Darcy Casola and Tyler Jones beating Gold Miners’ starter Bryden Daoust to tie it at 2-2.
After a Steve Babin’s man advantage marker at 12:18 of the period put Kirkland Lake back on top, Joseph Duoba answered back 34 seconds later to send the two sides to the dressing rooms tied after 40 minutes.
Following a scoreless final frame and a first five-minute OT the Soo capped off the comeback with Warmington ending it in the second overtime as he buried his second goal of the season.
Shots on goal favoured the Thunderbirds by a 31-20 margin with Joel Horodziejczyk securing the win with Chris Komma suffering the loss after entering the contest in relief of Daoust in the second period.
With the victory Sault Ste. Marie improved to 4-1-1-1 early in the campaign while Kirkland Lake slipped to 3-3-0-1.
SUDBURY NICKEL BARONS 4 BLIND RIVER BEAVERS 3 (2 OT) – Visiting Sudbury improved to a league-best 8-0 courtesy of Bradley Bell’s game-winner 2:21 into the second overtime as the Nickel Barons slipped past the Beavers at the Blind River Community Centre.
Sebastien Leroux had the lone goal of the opening period as the Sudbury forward notched his sixth goal of the campaign.
Blind River’s Corey McEwan pulled his side even midway through the game beating Michael Muzyka in the Nickel Barons net at 9:37 of the second.
The third session saw the two clubs score twice each to send the contest into extra time.
Leroux’s second of the night put Sudbury back on top early in the period only to see Tyson MacLeod tally twice, a minute and 23 seconds apart, to make it 3-2 Beavers with 6:17 to go.
The NOJHL’s leading goal scorer, Darcy Haines, forced OT as he buried his 11th of the season in the late stages of regulation.
After a scoreless first OT solved nothing, Bell’s attempt eluded Aaron Cormier midway through OT to win it and help the Nickel Barons remain unbeaten.
Shots on goal finished up 43-32 in favour of Sudbury with Muzyka picking up the win and Cormier helping the Beavers (2-5-0-1) pick up a point with the OT defeat.
NORTH BAY TRAPPERS 2 ABITIBI ESKIMOS 1 (2 OT) – The night’s final match-up, which also required double OT, was played at Jus Jordan Arena in Iroquois Falls with the visiting Trappers staying unbeaten in regulation in a tight-checking affair.
Following a scoreless opening period, it was North Bay’s Samuel Blanchett power play effort in the later stages of the middle frame that produced the game’s opening goal.
It looked like that would stand up as the winner, but the Eskimos, with netminder Marc Audet on the bench in favour of an extra attacker, dashed Greg Dodds’ shutout bid with 1:28 remaining in regulation as newcomer Peter Poulin-Roy buried the equalizer in his first game in an Eskimos uniform.
Playing four-on-four in the first extra period neither side could capitalize sending the game to a second five-minute OT where Brandon Janke ended it with a power play marker at the 34-second mark.
With the victory North Bay improves to 5-0-1-1 on the year with Dodds turning aside 35 of 36 shots he faced to pick-up the win.
Audet made 31 saves in defeat as the Abitibi record dipped to 1-4-0-1.
NOJHL action resumes Sunday as Blind River hosts Kirkland Lake in a 2 p.m. matinee.