Storm uses Toropchenko power to take their Memorial Cup opener
HALIFAX – Alexey Toropchenko struck for a natural hat trick in the opening period of the Guelph Storm’s opening game in the Memorial Cup national championship tournament as the Storm downed the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies 5-2 Saturday.
Toropchenko connected for his three consecutive goals for the Ontario Hockey League champions in just less than seven and a half minutes in the second half of the first period.
The Storm led the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League champions 3-1 at the end of the first period and all the scoring in the game was complete by the end of the second period.
MacKenzie Entwistle and Nick Suzuki scored the other goals for the Storm while Sean Durzi collected three assists. Single assists were awarded to Jack Hanley, Pavel Gogolev, Isaac Ratcliffe and Entwistle.
Vincent Marleau and Jakub Lauko fired in the goals for Rouyn-Noranda while assists went to Tyler Hinam, Lauko, Samuel Régis and goalkeeper Samuel Harvey.
The Storm outshot the Huskies 29-24 and both teams were scoreless on two power plays.
Anthony Popovich stopped 22 shots for the win in the Guelph net while Harvey had 24 saves for Rouyn-Noranda.
The result leaves the Storm and Halifax Mooseheads tied for top spot with one win apiece while Rouyn-Noranda joined the Prince Albert Raiders with one loss apiece.
The Storm and Halifax are to tangle Sunday at 7 p.m. at Halifax’s Scotiabank Centre.
Storm 5 Huskies 2
1. Rouyn-Noranda, Vincent Marleau (Tyler Hinam, Jakub Lauko), 2:17
2. Guelph, Alexey Toropchenko (unassisted), 11:00 sh
3. Guelph, Alexey Toropchenko (Jack Hanley, Pavel Gogolev), 13:07
4. Guelph, Alexey Toropchenko (Sean Durzi), 18:23
Penalty: Domenico Commisso Gue (kneeing), 9:04.
5. Guelph, MacKenzie Entwistle (Isaac Ratcliffe, Sean Durzi), 3:20
6. Rouyn-Noranda, Jakub Lauko (Samuel Régis, Samuel Harvey), 11:16
7. Guelph, Nick Suzuki (Sean Durzi, MacKenzie Entwistle), 19:15
Penalty: Félix Bibeau RN (cross checking), 7:05.
Penalties: Sean Durzi Gue (tripping), 1:11; Félix Bibeau RN (roughing), 19:55.
Shots on Goal
Goalies: Samuel Harvey (L, 29 shots-24 saves), Rouyn-Noranda; Anthony Popovich (W, 24 shots-22 saves), Guelph.
Power Plays (goals-chances): Rouyn-Noranda 0-2; Guelph 0-2.
Faceoffs Won: Rouyn-Noranda 35; Guelph 33.
- Guelph Sports Journal