November 17, 2007

Ottawa 10 – Guelph 3!

You read it right sports fans. There was some seriously inclement weather inside the Civic Centre and the Guelph Storm bore the brunt of it.

Both teams came into the contest pretty evenly matched on paper:

both in 7th place in their respective conferences
Guelph: 19 points after 20 games with a record of 8-9-3-0, GF 72 GA 73
Ottawa: 18 points after 20 games with a record of 8-10-0-2, GF 73 GA 83

Lots of talk about Guelph’s big NHL draft prospect Drew Doughty. While most folks are saying that Sarnia’s Steve Stamkos is likely to be the number 1 NHL draft pick next summer during the Buzz on Hockey before the game some commentators were suggesting that if anyone might challenge for that number one spot, it could be Drew Doughty. Tim Murray (Ottawa Senators Assistant General Manager and former (?) scout) and others were in the building tonight taking a look at Doughty and others. For our part, there are two Ottawa 67s who are reasonably ranked OHL players by the Central Scouting Rankings. In addition to the current crop of potential draftees, the scouts also had a chance to see some of the kids who are still a year or more away from their draft eligibility. And I'm sure the scouts liked some of what they saw.

Ottawa lineup news:
I have not read anything official but it is my understanding that Jordan Gallea has been sent down to the Nepean Raiders. I see his name on their roster. I don’t have any information on where Matt McDougall is but it is also my understanding that he has been sent down somewhere. I welcome any readers to share the facts with the rest of us.

Again, not confirmed, but it is my understanding that Keith Wynn has read the tea leaves and has chosen to retire (what an odd concept for someone so young). With the acquisition of Zach McCullough and the current crop of guys on the blue line, I have been told that Keith realized that his days were numbered.

We wish the best for all these young men where ever their paths take them. It’s tough slogging and the chances of making it big are pretty low.

Jason Bailey is still out recovering from mono but it seems that his return is imminent. Scott Cowie was a healthy scratch. Young Perugini got the call in net.

Guelph lineup news:
Having missed the last two home games, I was pretty busy catching up with the folks around me so I really didn’t pay a whole lotta attention to what was happening with the Guelph roster. Here’s what I believe to be the situation: Corey Syvret (injury), Patrick Moran, Brandon Buck, Kyle Steckley, Jamie Arniel, Travis Gibbons, and Matt Kennedy were all scratches. Thomas McCollum started between the pipes (this one I know to be true)

Ottawa Lines (I only kept track for the first period – if there were changes, I completely missed them):
JMcGinn, Couture, Lahey (the Crazy Eights - more on that later)
Methot, Latta, Lindsay
TMcGinn, Kiriakou, Zamec
Martindale, Lindsay, Carnevale

Defensive pairings (in no particular order):
Ryan/ Ostrcil

First Period:
The game started with Guelph winning the opening face off (I know it may be weird but for some reason I am preoccupied at the start of the game with which side wins the opening face off. I am really really trying not to be superstitious.). But a mere 40 seconds later Ottawa was on the PP with Nathan Martine being sent for a timeout for interference. The only real scoring chance was a short-handed one by the Storm. Guelph successfully defended the 2:00 advantage.

Bit by bit Ottawa started getting its game day mojo going. First, Logan Couture had a pretty good chance when he carried the puck around the back of the Guelph net and was nearly successful with the wrap around. Then, with Ottawa on the PK (Martindaleoff for boarding) Methot had a good chance for a short handed goal on a feed from Kiriakou and Logan had another chance with a short handed breakaway but could not settle the puck down for a good scoring chance. Great PK – no shots got through to Perugini.

Before the halfway mark of the first period was reached, Matt Lahey potted one from the bottom of the face-off circle to put Ottawa on the scoreboard. Logan Couture and Martin Paryzek got the assists.

Less than 2 minutes later, Adam Zamek scored his first of the night and third of the year with assists going to Tye McGinn and Thomas Kirakou. At this point, Sarnia coach, Jason Brooks, pulled McCollum as Ottawa had scored twice on 5 shots on goal. Little did he know what awaited his team. bwa ha ha ha ha (that's the scary part of storms)

With Matt Lahey off for tripping, Ottawa generated yet another short handed opportunity when Methot (?) had a breakaway and put the puck up into the mask of St. Jacques.

Crediting the third goal for the night is a bit of a mystery. We all agree that it happened on an Ottawa PP at 16:29 of the period while Joe Underwood was serving his sentence for tripping. According to the in-house announcers and the Team1200 announcers, the goal was credited Adam Zamec although the official score sheet gives credit to Tye McGinn with assists going to Julien Demers and Adam Zamec. Individual stats aside, Ottawa went up 3 – 0 in quick order. This is when the spousal unit turned to me and said “Oh no!” clearly expressing his concern that the early success may cause the team to sit back.

Well, the Storm did manage to get one back (against our 4th line !!) when Denis Hollenstein scored with less than two minutes left it the period. Peter Holland got the only assist.

Not to be undone, Jamie McGinn responded with his 9th goal of the season with less than a minute to go in the period. Julien Demers and Logan Couture got the helpers.

At the end of the first period, the score was 4 – 1 for the good guys and shots on goal were 11 – 10 for Ottawa.

Second Period
Given the way this game was unfolding, my note taking (never one of my strong skills) deteriorated substantially and Theognete and I did a lot of chatting during the game.

There were only (!) three goals in the second period. The first one was a beauty short handed goal. Cuma was serving his penalty for cross checking and on the kill Logan Couture poked the puck past Drew Doughty on the point. Jamie McGinn joined the rush. Logan passed to Jamie, Jamie passed it back and Logan potted the short handed goal to make it 5 -1 for Ottawa at 2:20 into the second period.

Same PK, same players, different side of the rink. Logan again poked the puck past Doughty on the point, chipped it off the boards and was going after it. Doughty’s response was to trip Logan and end (mercifully) the Storm power play. Ottawa managed 3 shots on goal with the advantage but as the penalty ended, signals got crossed on the Guelph bench and too many players ended up on the ice so Ottawa was back on the PP. Ottawa went up 6 – 1 on Adam Zamec’s second official goal of the night. Thomas Kiriakou got the assist.

During the second half of the period, I’m not sure if Ottawa eased up a bit or Guelph found some life, or a bit of both but the momentum shifted a bit towards Guelph. For all their efforts though, they only managed one PP goal with 26 seconds left in Lahey’s roughing penalty. There was a lot of activity in front of Perugini and the puck went off the upper body of Tim Priamo and he was able to knock it down into the net.

After 40 minutes the score was 6 – 2 for Ottawa and the shots were 24 – 23 for Ottawa.

Third Period (or the second half of eternity for Guelph)
There were a lot of penalties handed out in the third period, most of them in the last 4 minutes of the game. But it opened with a very questionable delay of game call when Julien Demers put it over the glass. I think the refs were trying to give Guelph a fighting chance. It didn’t work. I don’t think the Storm even got close to the net.

Although they weren’t doing any damage, Guelph did manage to keep Ottawa pinned in their end for much of the period. But when Ottawa broke loose – look out!

Ottawa’s 8th goal was the result of hard work and good timing. Ryan Martindale fought through two Storm troopers and put a hard shot on goal from the face off circle. St. Jacques made the save but served up a juicy rebound to Cody Lindsay who was all alone and scored the easy goal. Tyler Cuma got the second assist.

Guelph had a chance to get a short handed goal of their own when Ottawa coughed up a two-on-one breakaway. I don’t know who the player was but Chris Perugini stoned him.

Then another result of hard work gave Adam Zamec yet another goal – this one an unassisted shorty. He picked the pocket of the Storm player in his own zone, moved around the guy and beat the now shell-shocked St. Jacques.

Adam Zamec was clearly on a role. Five and a half minutes later, he scored his official hat trick for the night. Tye McGinn and Zach McCullough got the assists. Thomas Nesbitt was a sharp teammate and got the puck from the linesman.

Matt Lahey made it a nice round 10 with just over 5 minutes to go in the period. Jamie McGinn and Julien Demers got the assists.

And then it started getting a tad scrappy. A Storm player took offense at a perfectly clean and legal check along the boards. Michael Latta and Tyler Melancon mixed it up and were shown the door – the door to the dressing room that is. Radim Ostrcil got 2 minutes for roughing. Then Julien Demers and Tyler Carroll got tangled up. Demers got 5 and Carroll got the instigator, fighting, 10 minute misconduct and a game. If I’m not mistaken, this will cost him one game automatically and perhaps a league review.

Guelph finally scored one more but the refs really blew it. There was a bit of a goal mouth scramble and the replay clearly showed that Chris had his hand over the puck which should have drawn a whistle. But the ref was watching and not reffing and Derek Brochu was left to whack it from under Chris’ glove and into the net. Peter Holland and Joe Underwood got the assists.

But it wasn’t even a moral booster. When the Storm was over and the debris cleared, it was Ottawa 10 and Guelph 3. Shots were pretty even – 30 – 32 for Guelph.

Random thoughts:
  • What a game by the 67s. Were they really that good or was Guelph that bad? I think the boys were that good. They really seemed to click tonight. And it was a solid effort for the entire game – they kept trying to score right to the end. I hardly expect to see this sort of scoring output regularly but the effort would be great to see consistently. It seems that the new guys are turning out to be great additions. Adam Zamec has already exceeded his entire scoring output from last year. 12 different players got points tonight!
  • Can’t remember where I heard it but didja know that there was an NHL Crazy Eights line? I’m pretty sure I heard reference to it either during the HHOF induction ceremony (yes I watched it) or during some game I was watching. My reaction was “no way – WE have the Crazy Eights line”. Well, research shows that it was the Philadelphia Flyers: Lindros (88), Fedyk (18) Recchi (8).
  • Drew Doughty did not have the type of game that he would want scouts watching. Ended up with his butt stapled to the bench in the third.
  • Cuma, on the other hand, seemed to have a good game. As did many other 67s players.
  • There were a few fights that I didn’t report on – none of them noteworthy really.

Three Stars – an Ottawa sweep.
1. Adam Zamec (3 goals and an assist)
2. Tye McGinn (goal and 2 assists)
3. Chris Perugini (27 saves)

Team 1200 Hardest working 67s: many choices but they gave it to Jamie McGinn.

Blitzen’s Rate the Anthem: in the “where are they now’ category, the very first Canadian Idol winner Ryan Malcolm was tonight’s anthem singer and he got it right! Pay attention all you would-be anthem singers. He gets a 9 out of 10 (the crabby judge knocked off a point for not singing the bilingual version of the anthem). He is most welcome to come back and share his great voice in leading us in the national anthem.

See you on Sunday. It will be another late post as we will be celebrating our nephew’s birthday right after the game.

Go 67s Go!!

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