IN THE NEWS
From the Ottawa Sun Barre Campbell writes, 67's Game 1 gurus. Quote from the game hero:
And quote from the coach on the importance of the win:
"That's my biggest goal of my OHL career, minor hockey, everything," said Akeson, who scored his first career OHL overtime goal.
From the Ottawa Citizen Andy Watson writes, 67's jump into driver's seat.
"I won't down play the importance of one game," said Kilrea. "It did prove that we can win in Peterborough, which we couldn't do throughout the season.
"We came here and we won, so now we know we can."
From the Peterborough Examiner Mike Davies writes, Petes in strange spot after loss. Snippets:
From the Toronto Sun Terry Koshan writes, Appreciative 67's in flight. On Hunt’s providing flights for travel throughout playoffs:
For the first time this playoffs Peterborough Petes trail a series.
[. . .]
“Lukas drove the net like Killer (67’s coach/GM Brian Kilrea) tells him to,” Akeson said. “He put one out in front and I just took a whack at it. I got hit so I didn’t see it go in I just saw the bench jump up.”
[. . .]
“The first game of a series playing at home we were, maybe, a little nervous,” Todd said.
“I don’t think we were on top of our game as far as making good passes and playing as confidently as we are capable of.
“I think this is a good opportunity for us to go into their building. We’ve had pretty good success on the road this year. I think we can improve our game and we’ll have to.”
And from SLAM! Sports, 67's take opener.
"We're really grateful for what he does for us," said overage forward Jeremy Akeson, who scored the winner at 2:16 of overtime before a packed house of 3,843. "It's such a better feeling to have a 30-minute flight. You get off the plane, come right to the rink and you're ready to go."
The game was broadcast on radio (TEAM 1200/Dave Schreiber and AJ Jakubec) and television (Rogers Television 22/Scott MacArthur and Lee Versage and Cogeco feed from Peterborough/Terry Doyle and Bob Akins). Some notes from Schreibs and AJ:
* Killer w/over 1000 wins and Todd w/over 500 wins – amazing.
* Thinks that it will be a real physical series.
* Schreibs echoed my ‘fuel to the fire’ regarding Bickell’s comments on Peterborough.
* Will have to do a better job containing Reddox, Ryder, and Kaleta.
PRE-GAME INTERVIEW W/KILLER (Schreibs)
(Thoughts on this Conference Finals round) You never know how long you’ll survive. All I know is that you never look farther than tonight. Hopefully it will be a long one.
(On what the team needs to do) Starts with him [Battochio] but everyone has to contribute and play well. We know that Peterborough romped through pretty good themselves. We need to play well tonight and do the little things better than we have.
(On coaching match up/line match ups) The big thing with the line ups is staying on the ice 5-on-5. We can stay with them. Hopefully we won’t get into penalty troubles. Hopefully we’ve learned a little about discipline.
(On who he’d like to see step up their game) I’d like to see everyone stay on a roll: Mancari, Talbot, Hulit, Petruzalek and Kaspar, Akeson. Bickell being back home and McGinn. We need everyone to play as well as they can and it will be good enough.
(On video replay – is it a positive.) I think it is. You have the technology and you have the complete coverage of every game. It helps the ref. In the case you have a controversial call it helps the ref.
PRE-GAME INTERVIEW W/COACH TODD (AJ)
(Thoughts on this Conference Finals round) Well the Ottawa 67s have a fine hockey club and we expect a real competitive series. They scored more and allowed less and that tells you a lot about their level.
(On Series w/Toronto) St. Mikes had a great series with Mississauga and Mississauga looked like the favourite, but St. Mikes finished with more points than any team in the division. They played a disciplined game and their building is tight. They received great goaltending coming into the series.
(Home ice advantage an advantage?) That can be a key factor. But Ottawa has been able to win both first games of their series. We have to be ready to deal with that tonight.
(Other offensive players besides Reddox and Ryder ) We had a balanced attack from our 3 top lines and our fourth down low. We hope to get a consistent effort from everyone.
(On Peterborough goaltending) Jeff’s played well from the last half of the year. He was building toward Christmas. We went to the two goaltending system. He’s played real well and he’s taken the brunt of the load here in the playoffs. That happens in the playoffs. They gain confidence and that’s where we are right now.
(On playing vs Killer) Coaching against Brian has always been a pleasure because he teaches his players dignity in the game. We appreciate the skill he teaches them.
*Forwards: McGinn, Talbot, Hulit (started); Bickell, Bonello, Mancari; Akeson, Petruzalek, Kaspar; VanderVeeken, Ouellette, Alphonso.
*Defensive pairings: Colbert, Joslin; Staubitz, Van Herpt; Beard, Lawrance.
*Starting in goal: Battochio. Guadagnolo as backup.
*Scratches: Reid (inj-ankle), Lahey (inj-conc), Spezza, Jarram, and Kiriakou (healthy).
I was really impressed with both teams. They both played hard – each team pushing harder at different points, with the other team bouncing back, some end-to-end play, a lot of great scoring chances, and good goaltending. The SOG were even for the first time in the playoffs for the 67s. The one area that the Petes were better in, was the PP. The 67s were 0/5 on the PP, while the Petes were 2/5. The 67s will need to work on this, otherwise Kaleta will continue to get away with his shenanigans! The best game I’ve seen in the playoffs so far – really enjoyed this game, and the fact that 67s won it makes it all the sweeter.
They had the player introductions prior to the puck drop. A quick ‘cheers and jeers’ round up: upon introduction the whole team was booed, Guadagnolo was booed (the goalie they saw play over the reg season), they booed Bickell loudly – Bickell smiling the whole time. Some had a nice cheer for Mancari, a big boo for Bonello (he smiled too). And a nice cheer for Killer.
First period. 67s got on the sheet first – with a penalty call, and Peterborough scored first on PP (1-0), a goal by Ryder. A hooking call on Raftis gave Ottawa their first PP opportunity, which the Petes killed off easily. Petruzalek tied it up, a goal flipped into the top of the net, short side on MacDougald (1-1). A high-sticking by VanderVeeken gave Peterborough their second PP of the period. This time the 67s were able to kill it off. SOG were pretty good, with 8 for Ottawa and 7 for Peterborough. The score was tied at 1-1.
Second period. The 67s really increased the pressure in the second. At the beginning of the period, Hulit scored to give Ottawa the lead 2-1. He was parked out in front of the net, waiting for a rebound, and shot it home. There was a good stretch where they kept the puck in the Petes’ zone and were getting a number of chances on net. The Petes iced the puck a couple times to get a break. Ottawa was not able to capitalize on their PP chances in the second. Peterborough however had no such problems, scoring on their PP chance to tie it up (2-2). SOG at the end of the period were 20 for Ottawa and 18 for Peterborough. The score was tied 2-2.
Third period. Hulit continued taking a beating in the playoffs, drawing a penalty (slashing), but still the 67s were not able to capitalize. There was a fast pace in the third, with end-to-end skating and both teams forechecking hard. SOG at the end of the period were 25 for Ottawa and 24 for Peterborough. The score remained tied at 2-2.
OT period. Just over 2:00 into the third Akeson scored to win the game. It looked like he didn’t know it went in initially, as he took the shot at the net and was spun around by a Petes defenceman. He certainly knew it seconds later when he was mobbed by his teammates for congratulatory hugs. The hero of the game for sure, with co-hero status going to Kaspar who worked to get the puck into the zone and fight off a check. He got the puck out in front of the net one-handed while falling to the ice, and Akeson was in good position to get the pass. Final SOG were 32 for Ottawa and 28 for Peterborough. OH YEAH! The third time the 67s have gone into the opponent’s rink and stolen away home ice advantage. Good for them.
1, Petruzalek, (6) (Kaspar, Van Herpt), 08:09
2, Hulit, (8) (Talbot, Colbert), 02:32
4, Akeson, (4) (Kaspar, Petruzalek), 02:16
1, Ryder, (8) (Kaleta, Raftis), 02:23 (PP)
2, Hendrikx, (5) (Morrison, Tardif), 14:30 (PP)
The OHL three stars were: (1) Akeson, (2) Battochio, and (3) Hendrikx.
The TEAM 1200 three stars were: (1) Kaspar, (2) Hendrikx, and (3) Akeson.
GAME 2 Sat Apr 23 at OTT, 7:00 p.m.
GAME 3 Mon Apr 25 at PET, 7:00 p.m.
GAME 4 Wed Apr 27 at OTT, 7:00 p.m.
GAME 5* Fri Apr 29 at PET, 7:00 p.m.
GAME 6* Sun May 1 at OTT, 2:00 p.m.
GAME 7* Mon May 2 at PET, 7:00 p.m.