The IceDogs come into today’s game after a day’s rest to recover from a stunning 6 – 0 loss to Kingston on Friday. Rookie goalie Andrew Loverock let in 6 goals on 27 shots – one on the power play and one short handed. Their big guns: Jordan Owens (27), Michael Swift (24) and Jadran Beljo (22). On the penalty side: Brent Oliphant (41), Oskar Osala (38) and Stephan Legein (33). For plus/minus, keep an eye on Nathan Martine (+11), Alex Pietrandelo (+10) and Gianluca Caputi (+8). Mississauga scratches for today: Lucas Lobsinger (ill), Cody Bass, and Stevan Monojlovic. An addition for today: Adrian Volpe dressing as the back-up goalie.
Ottawa dropped from 8th place in the Eastern conference on Friday to 10th place coming into this afternoon’s game as Kingston had two wins against strong conference rivals Mississauga (Friday)and Barrie (yesterday). Oshawa got two points in their win against London and Peterborough also came away with 2 points against Brampton yesterday. Ottawa scratches for today: Kyle Jukosky, Arron Alphonso and Elgin Reid. Rumour has it that Joe Pleckaitis is not with the team anymore – not sure if he walked, was released or traded. His absence was not announced as a scratch nor has there been an official announcement.
As for the Ottawa numbers: Leading scorers: Jamie McGinn (20), Jesse Biduke (16) and Brett Liscomb and Arron Alphonso each with 14. On the PIM side we have Joe Grimaldi still leading (?) the pack with 41, followed by Jakub Voyta with 26 and Arron Alphonso with 29. Our plus/minus leaders are Arron Alphonso with +8, Jakub Voyta with +6 and Jesse Biduke with +5. Is there some sort of acknowledgement in order in that Arron is in the team’s top three for points, penalty minutes and +/-?
The match up in specialty teams will be interesting to watch as Mississauga has strong PP numbers on the road (5th overall with 20 goals) and Ottawa having strong PK numbers at home (3rd in the league having allowed only 7 goals). On the flip side, Ottawa’s home PP numbers are middle-of-the-road with 14 goals, against Mississauga’s road PK which is pretty strong (ranked 3rd in the league) having allowed only 13 goals. Ottawa still has the fewest PIMS in the league with 300 in 16 games; Mississauga is smack-dab in the middle with 431 minutes in 19 games.
Lines for tonight (and all 4 lines saw good ice time) were:
Lahey, Couture, McGinn
Biduke, Liscombe, Kewin
Cimadamore, Pleckaitis, Lahey
Nesbitt, Lindsay, Ribeiro
Grimaldi – Joslin
Cuma – Vojta
Beard - Ryan
Another game where Ottawa was beaten by a team that played really well and made the 67s pay for their mistakes. Only one ref tonight and I think it showed but don’t interpret that as a complaint that Ottawa lost by the whistle (or lack thereof).
As with the game on Friday, Ottawa started slower than their opponents. Ottawa started with a PP just 22 seconds into the game but did not manage even a shot on goal. Mississauga managed a shot with the disadvantage. Then Mississauga went on the PP about just under 3 minutes later when Brodie Beard was sent off for hooking. Liscomb was really aggressive on the PK, challenging the player on the point. Ottawa came out of that with only allowing 2 shots on goal. But with just under 7 minutes into the period, the IceDogs scored when Jordan Skellet got a wrist shot from the point past Lukas Flueler. Alex Pietrangleo got the assist. Ottawa had a rough time getting anything organized outside their defensive zone. I really like the play of Tyler Cuma but he racked up some penalty minutes today starting with a boarding call at the 12:38 mark of the game. I should note that by this time Ottawa had not yet registered a shot on goal. The 67s had a good penalty kill with Flueler making a big save, Liscomb making a good interception and Kewin ending the PK with a rush and shot on Loverock. With Joslin off on a hooking call with 8 minutes left to play, Ottawa again came out of a bad situation with some skill and a whole lotta luck. Flueler somehow got all tangled up and way out of position. Thankfully Tyler Cuma and Logan Couture played double duty as stand-in goal tenders. With Jordan Skellet off for high sticking and Kyle Lamb off for elbowing, Ottawa had the 2-man advantage for 1:03. With 6 seconds left in the first penalty, Jamie McGinn scored his 12th goal of the year when he backhanded the rebound off a one-timer from Liscomb to tie up the game. Derek Joslin got the other assist. And that’s how the period ended: tied at one with Mississauga out shooting Ottawa 10 – 9.
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As with Friday, the second period was not much different than the first. Ottawa started slow and sloppy but managed to pick things up in the second half. Again, Ottawa had an early PP opportunity but Mississauga played their PK very aggressively with success. Then it was the IceDogs’ turn with the advantage when Matt Lahey found himself on the wrong end of a tripping call. Mississauga got their only PP goal of the afternoon when Michael Swift roofed it past Flueler with a wrist shot from the circle. Ottawa still had difficulties getting anything organized out of their defensive zone and they were turning the puck over too much. At 11:02 of the period, Mississauga went up by two when Kyle Lamb scored on a delayed penalty against the 67s. Joshua Day and Michael Swift had the assists. The IceDogs made it a 3-goal lead just over a minute later when Oskar Osala beat Flueler with help from Gianluca. At this point it was 4 – 1 for Mississauga.
At the 9:11 mark, Shea Kewin and Brett Oliphant were sent off for offsetting minors (roughing) and Grimaldi for holding. Ottawa had a couple of really good chances for short handed goals, one when Couture stole the puck at the left point and another when McGinn got the puck away from the Missy player. McGinn drove for the net and appeared to me to have the step when he was hooked but Ottawa only drew the penalty and not the penalty shot. Ottawa got another 2-man advantage for 1:02 when Joshua Day and Michael Swift were serving time. Like Friday, Ottawa managed to score on both sides of the penalty pair. First it was Jamie McGinn with his second goal of the afternoon and 13th of the season when he picked up another Liscomb rebound. Couture got the other assist. Then 30 seconds later it was Liscomb in the right spot when Derek Joslin fired one in to have it bounce of Brett’s skate. A review confirmed that it was a good goal (not kicked it). Grimaldi got a point for the assist on that one. Ottawa was back in the game having scored two goals to make it 4 – 3 for Mississauga. The 67s were put to the test at the end of the period when Tyler Cuma earned 2 minutes for cross-checking and another 10 minutes for his display of temper. I should note that these penalties were called seconds after a Mississauga player got a tad too intimate in the crease with Lukas Flueler without any consequences. Lukas and the rest of the team came through with some good saves and some good shot blocks. The period ended with Ottawa down a goal and still being out shot 27 – 20.
For the third time in the game, Ottawa started a period with an early PP opportunity when Chris Lawrence was off for interference. Mississauga managed a great breakaway for a potential short handed goal but Flueler followed the player perfectly to spoil the chance. Then Ottawa got a 34 second 2-man advantage when Alex Pietrangelo was also called for interference. We all thought we had the tying goal in the scramble when it looked like the puck wend in and rebounded out really quickly but the play went on. The Ottawa players didn’t protest at all and a review was not requested. Sid got a really good picture (which I hope gets posted here) where it sure looks like a goal but from the angle it’s hard to be sure.
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It was hard to say w/ the angle and the little LCD camera screen
we had at the game, but looking at this bigger photo it doesn't
look like a goal -- Sid
The wind was taken out of Ottawa’s sails when Jordan Owens scored a pretty short handed goal when he got control of the puck in the neutral zone and then got the backhand through the 5-hole on Lukas to put Mississauga up again by two at the 12:16 mark of the period.
Not long after (well, about 40 seconds later by my notes), Shea Kewin and Brett Oliphant dropped the gloves right off the face off at centre ice. By the numbers (age, weight and height) it would appear that the only difference is that Shea has about 20 pounds on Brett. OHLToughguys.com doesn’t have a rating on these two. Shea definitely got the decision on this one, landing a number of solid shots and getting the take-down.
With under 4 minutes left in the game, Mississauga iced the game when Oskar Osala scored (unassisted) his second of the night.
The game ended 6 – 3 for Mississauga and the IceDogs out shooting Ottawa 38-27.
Ottawa was outplayed and out skated again. The IceDogs moved the puck really well, skated fast, kept moving and played their positions very well. Ottawa got beat by a better team. They need to tighten up their defense and stop waiting for the perfect scoring chances. All their goals came on the PP this weekend (9) – and they still dropped two games (admittedly they got a point on Friday in the losing cause). They need to do better 5 on 5. They can do it – we have faith.
Three stars of the game:
Jordan Owens (Mississauga)
Oskar Osala (Mississauga)
Hardest working 67: Brett Liscomb (again)
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See you on Friday when we welcome the Belleville Bulls for the front end of a home and home series.
(Photos added by Sid 2006-11-13 1500h)