It’s Game Day folks! I am super excited!! Could this be a preview of the Eastern Conference Final?
In Fridays game, the 67′s lost to the Niagara IceDogs by a score of 3 – 2. Niagara took an early 1 – 0 lead in the first but Sean Monahan tied it before the period was over. After a scoreless second, our boys took the lead in the third off a goal by Captain Thomas Nesbitt. Unfortunately, an untimely slashing penalty taken by Ryan Martindale gave the IceDogs the chance they needed to score the tying goal and force OT. Cody Ceci took a tripping penalty late in OT and Ryan Strome made the 67's pay by scoring his second of the night to seal the deal. It was a tough loos, but at least our boys got a badly needed point.
The real story of the game was the damage done to Ottawa's forward lines.
The first player to go down was Shane Prince. He got absolutely smoked with an open ice hit. However, the real damage was caused by his helmet coming off allowing his head to hit he ice. He is off for the week with a mild concussion.
The second player to go down was Cody Lindsay. He was unfortunate enough to have a puck deflect right into his face. He is listed as week-to-week with a jaw injury.
The final player to go down was Thomas Nesbitt. I didn't see exactly what happened but know he is listed as week-to-week with a lower body injury.
On to today …. The Mississauga St. Michaels Majors are in town .... Can our boys win the season series?
The Majors offense is lead by Justin Shugg (82 pts). They are 8-2-0-0 over the last 10 games and are currently on a 6 game winning streak. We have beat them twice this year. Can the third time also be a charm?
Depending on the status of his groin (game time decision), we should see work horse Petr Mrazek get the start for the 67′s and JP Anderson get the start for the Majors. We may also see Marc Zanetti back in the line-up and thank heavens for that. Our penalty kill and power play have suffered big time without him.
Division Race Update:
Ottawa 88 pts – 3 games left, 6 more possible pts
Oshawa 86 pts – 3 games left, 6 more possible pts
This means that Oshawa can only hope hope to finish with 92 pts, while Ottawa would only need 4 to get to 92 pts to ensure the division win. Co’mon boys, you can do it!!
Petr Mrazek – Groin – Game Time Decision for Sunday
Marc Zanetti - Knee - Game Time Decision for Sunday
Jon Carnevale – Concussion – Indefinitely
Shane Prince - Mild concussion/Whiplash - Is at home in Rochester, NY resting for the week
Cody Lindsay - Jaw - Week-to-Week
Thomas Nesbitt - Lower Body - Week-to-Week
Julian Liciani - Upper Body - Day-to-Day
I’ll re-visit these in the post-game blog to see how close, or far away, I came.
Star of the Game: Ryan Martindale
Winning Goal Scorer: Tyler Toffoli
Final Score: 4 – 3 Ottawa
What are YOUR pre-game predictions? Leave a comment with your answers.
Keys to the game for Ottawa:
- Be aggressive on the fore check, don't let up!
- Make smarter passes. Blind Pass = Turnover!
- Stay out of the penalty box!! Our PK is so cold, it might as well be frozen!
- Keep spreading the offense around. Secondary scoring will be the key to victories on the playoffs.
Pre-game Notes and Numbers:
- This is the 4th and final meeting between the clubs this year. Ottawa won 4 – 2 last time.
- Keep your eye on Justin Shugg, Casey Cizikas & JP Anderson for the Majors.
- The 67′s are 5-3-1-1 in their last 10 games – Tough loss to the Dogs!
- Tyler Toffoli is 3rd in OHL scoring with 99 pts, Shane Prince is 9th with 88 points.
- Be disciplined! The Majors have the 6th ranked PP in the league @ 21.9%
- Is the power play dead? We have dropped to 9th on the PP @ 21.5%
- The penalty kill has to improve. We are holding at 5th overall in the PK @ 82.4%
Forwards: Smith, Martindale Toffoli
Defense: Gibbons, Sedlak
Scratches – Carnevale, Nesbitt, Luciani, Giftopoulos, Janes, Prince, Fontana, Lindsay
Mississauga St. Michaels Majors:
Forwards: Shugg, Smith-Pelly, DeSousa
Defense: Percy, Flemming
Scratches – Cizikas, Corrente, Cramarossa, Rasmussen
First period - 20:00
- Good start for the first line ... we'll need them tonight!
- Majors shot from the point just misses
- Majors looking good folks ... they came to play
- Martindale with some sweet moves but Smith misses wide
- Nice speed burst from Dubois .... allows Ottawa to set up ..
- How did Monahan miss that?
First Period - 15:00
- Toffoli comes close ...... good sustained pressure
- WOW!! Nice save by Campbell.
- Campbell makes another great save ... looks sharp tonight!
- Penalty (Mis) - Rob Flick - 2 minutes for cross-checking
- Sloppy passing gives the Majors a nice shorthanded chance
- Couple real nice chances in front for Ottawa .. they can't cash
First Period - 10:00
- Majors back-hander just misses wide ... those are tough to stop
- Nice job clearing the puck during that scramble!
- Flick fans on the shot from the side of the Ottawa net ... thank god!
- Toffoli gets a sweet pass from Smith for the breakaway ... Anderson denies him
- Penalty (Mis) Gregg Sutch - 2 minutes for hooking
First Period - 05:00
- Toffoli gives it away but prevent the breakaway ..
- Wow ... that PP was sloppy ... to be expected with a mish-mash line-up
- Penalty (Mis) - Brett Flemming - 2 minutes for boarding
- Gustavsen is still down folks ... he may be hurt bad ... thank god, he got up.
- Toffoli's slapper from the point gets through, but not in
- Gibbons misses from the point ... at least get it on the net man!!
- Marvelous defnesive play by Ceci to prevent that Marjors shorthanded chance
- Penalty (Mis) - Corey Bureau - 2 minutes for slashing
- Chance ffrom the side-boards gets stopped ... quick whistle from the Ref
- Penalty (Ott) - Travis Gibbons - 2 minutes for Unsportsmanlike
End of Second Period - Score: 0 - 0
Second Period - 20:00
- - Penalty (Mis) - Justin Shugg - 2 minutes for hooking
- Ceci can't get the pass through on the rush ...
- Wow ... no coordination on that breakout play at all ..
- Bit hit by Dalton Smith .... getting a penalty for it
- Penalty (Ott) - Dalton Smith - 2 minutes for roughing
- Ottawa 2 on 1 ... Martindale elects to shoot and gets denied
Second period - 15:00
- Nice pass interception by Gibbons to get the clear
- Penalty (Mis) - Marc Cantin - 2 minutes for holding
- Penalty (Mis) - Jamie Wise - 10 minutes Misconduct
- Otaawa getting good chances ..
OTTAWA GOAL!!!! Sean Monahan (19) - Assists: Martindale (48) & Toffoli (48)
- That's 100 points for Toffoli folks!! WOW!!
- Good job by Campbell to stop that play
Second Period - 10:00
- Penalty (Ott) - Ben Dubois - 2 minutes for goalie interference
- Nice glove save by Campbell
- The Majors almost cash on that back-door play ..
- Penalty (Mis) - Justin Shugg - 2 minutes for high sticking
- Great job by the 67's killing that last penalty
- Penalty (Ott) - Shayne Campbell - 2 minutes for Interference
OTTAWA GOAL!!!! (SH) Cody Ceci (9) - Assists: Toffoli (49) & Monahan (25)
- Penalty (Ott) - Dalton Smith - 2 minutes for tripping - Majors get a 5 on 3
Second period - 05:00
- Where's the shot Brett? Watch your point men!!
- Great job killing the 5 on 3 ... Having Zanetti back makes a difference!
- Nifty play by Ceci to keep that play alive
- Majors are pressing hard ...
- Oh man ..... what an amazing save by Shayne Campbell to keep it at 2 - 0
End of Second Period - Score: 2 - 0 Ottawa
Third Period - 20:00
- Well then ... that's a bad start
- Majors Goal - Justin Shugg (39) - Score: 2 - 1 Ottawa
- The Majors come right back and ring one right off the post
- The Majors look a lot more focused in this period
- Majors come close again folks ... they are hungry!
- Penalty (Ott) - Travis Gibbons - 2 minutes for hooking
- Nice pad save by Campbell
Third Period - 15:00
- Great blocker save by Campbell
- Ottawa shot goes way wide ...
- Martindale feathers one through the crease, no one there to receive it
- Ceci cranks a shot off the ankle of Mika Partenen
- Majors shot from the point just misses ... and I mean just
- That was a great shift for Dalton Smith
- Martindale & Toffoli hook up again but Toffoli can't get the shot off
- Majors come right back with a great chance of their own
Third Period - 10:00
- Majors Goal - Riley Brace (15) - Score: 2 - 2
- A lot of back and forth here
- Penalty (Ott) - Tyler Toffoli - 2 minutes for slashing
Third period - 05:00
- Another close chance for the Majors ...
- Toffoli's shots get deflected to the corner
- Ottawa 2 on 1 ... but Dubois can't handle the puck
- Toffoli just misses with that high shot
End of Third period - Score: 2 - 2 - Off to OT we go
- Cardwell gives the puck away ...
Majors Goal - Justin Sugg (40) - That's the game
End of Overtime - Final Score: 3 - 2 Majors
1 – Seam Monahan (Ott)
2 –Justin Shugg (Mis)
3 – Tyler Toffoli (Ott)
The Majors looked like they showed up to play and got it the win.
67’s Next Game: March 18th, 2011
Opponent: Oshawa Generals
Game Time: 7:00 PM
Location: Ottawa (Rona Center)
Until next time, If you can’t be a player, be a fan!!
Follow me on twitter: @ABrownHockey