Erie Otters yield first goal, come back to open playoffs with win
ERIE – After giving up the opening goal of the game, the second-ranked Erie Otters responded with three in a row to head at a 6-3 victory over the Sarnia Sting in the opening game of their Ontario Hockey League Western Conference quarter-final playoff series Thursday night at the Erie Insurance Arena.
The Otters led 3-1 at the end of the first period after outshooting the Sting 23-5 in the period. Erie was up 4-2 after the second.
Kyle Maksimovich scored twice for Erie while single goals were added by Warren Foegele, Alex DeBrincat, Taylor Raddysh and Anthony Cirelli.
Drake Rymsha, Jordan Ernst and Jordan Kyrou scored for Sarnia.
The Otters outshot Sarnia 51-23 and went 1-for-6 on the power play while Sarnia was 1-for-2.
Tony Timpano picked up the win in the Erie net while Justin Fazio took the loss for Sarnia.
Second game of the series is set for Saturday night at Sarnia.
Sault Ste. Marie 5 Flint 2
SAULT STE. MARIE – The fifth-ranked Soo Greyhounds scored the first three goals of the game on their way to the series-opening win over Flint Thursday night at the Essar Centre.
The Greyhounds led 3-0 at the end of the first period before Flint closed the gap to a single goal by the end of the second.
Hayden Verbeek netted a pair of goals for Sault Ste. Marie while Jack Kopacka, Boris Katchouk and Blake Speers scored once apiece.
Mathieu Henderson and Alex Peters had the goals for Flint.
The Greyhounds outshot Flint 37-21 as they held the Firebirds to less than 10 shots in each period. Flint went 1-for-3 on the power play while Sault Ste. Marie was scoreless on four power plays.
Matthew Villalta was the winning netminder for the Greyhounds while Connor Hicks took the loss for Flint.
Second game of the series is to go Saturday night at Sault Ste. Marie.
Peterborough 5 Niagara 2
PETERBOROUGH – The Peterborough Petes hit for five consecutive goals to score the win over the Niagara IceDogs in the opening game of their Eastern Conference quarter-final Thursday night at the Peterborough Memorial Centre.
The teams scored a goal apiece in both the first and third periods.
Semyon Der-Arguchintsev’s at 1:15 of the second period proved to be the winner for the Petes. Adam Timleck scored twice for Peterborough while Josh Coyle and Kyle Jenkins added single goals.
Kirill Maksimov and Danial Singer had a goal apiece for Niagara.
Peterborough outshot Niagara 43-34 and both teams went scoreless on their power plays – Niagara on two and Peterborough on three.
Dylan Wells was the winning goalie for the Petes while Stephen Dhillon took the loss for Niagara.
The teams are to meet again Saturday night at Peterborough in the second game of the series.
- Guelph Sports Journal