December 11, 2010

Outshot 37 - 22; Ottawa wins 6 - 1 Against Brampton

It was a strange affair at the Rona Centre last night. There were some good moments by both teams but it can't be said that Ottawa dominated in the way the score might suggest. Or perhaps it was a case of quality over quantity.

For Cody St. Jacques, this clearly was not his most fun game since leaving the University of Guelph Gryphons to return to the OHL. 6 goals on 22 shots, including two shorties - ouch!

Click here for the game sheet.

The Ottawa 67's finally iced a full complement of players which may have contributed to some (if not all) of the discombobulation that took place on the ice from time to time. Ryan Martindale returned to centre the RST line, Lindsay rejoined Smith and Nesbitt and for the first time in a while, the 67's had a full 4th line with Remy Giftopolous playing centre to the two rookie defensemen Ryan Shipley and Taylor Fielding.

Neither team could be accused of starting the game with intensity although Brampton had a great scoring chance early into the first period that Petr Mrazek saved (which is becoming a typical start to most 67's games).

Then Ottawa got its first of what would eventually be 9 power plays and it was pretty weak. No precision, no sustained pressure and no shots. In fact, for all 9 PPs (including a 4-minute double minor) the 67's managed to muster a total of about 7 SOGs (none during the double minor) and yet they scored 3 PPGs.

For their 2 PKs, they had about 4 SOGs and scored twice. Go figure.

For long stretches of the game, Ottawa struggled to sustain pressure in their offensive zone but when they were there, they were lethal. Brampton did a better job at times spending time on the Ottawa side of the blue line but were unable to produce anything tangible for their efforts.

Ottawa opened the scoring while defending against Brampton's first PP of the game. The first PK unit of Foglia, Graovac, Gibbons and Cardwell generated one scoring chance for Foglia and Graovac. Then the second unit scored with 18 seconds left when Thomas Nesbitt took a nice feed from Cody Lindsay and flipped it over the stick hand of St. Jacques. Marc Zanetti got the second assist for his great stretch pass to Lindsay. That goal was at 7:05 of the period and was Ottawa's first shot on goal.

Tyler Toffoli scored his 26th goal of the year (and the only full-strength goal the 67's would have in this game) taking a big pass from Adam Sedlak and flipping a back hand shot over the stick hand of St. Jacques (think that's his weak side?). Julian Luciani got the second assist.

Travis Gibbons closed the scoring for the first period with a PPG buzzer-beater when he buried a rebound from the hash marks. The 67's led 3 - 0 on 5 shots in 20 minutes.

The only scoring for the second period was Ottawa's second SHG of the game that came off the stick of Tyler Toffoli. Shane Prince assisted on the nice give-and-go between them that put the puck on Toffoli's stick for the tap-in past St. Jacques. Meanwhile, Petr Mrazek saved all 17 shots that Brampton threw at him.

Brampton had life, briefly, very early in the third when Scott Tanski back-handed the puck past Mrazek from the side of the net. But that was all they could muster.

Thomas Nesbitt and Dalton Smith added a pair of PPGs (Thomas' goal was on a delayed PP) while Brampton racked up 8 minutes of penalty time to effectively snuff any chance for a come back. But the play of the period was Mrazek's poke check on Philip Lane and scramble back to the net from the hash marks to make the second save. Yes - he is considered a very athletic goalie.

And the 67's skated away with the 6-1 win on only 22 shots.

Three Stars as selected by the Team1200

Hardest Working 67's as selected by the Team1200: Dalton Smith

Random Thoughts:
  • The collision between Nicholas Foglia and Jon Carnevale took quite the toll on Jon. He's been sent home to rest up. They will re-evaluate his situation after Christmas. Cosimo Fontana has stayed with the team and is progressing well.
  • It's official - Petr Mrazek is not joining the Czech Republic national junior team. Not because they don't want him but because he refuses to be extorted by the team that holds his rights. Don Campbell from the Ottawa Citizen has the story here. Sometimes you have to wonder who the adults are.
  • Trades in the OHL have been active leading up to the mini-trade deadline (the so-called Steve Mason rule that keeps teams from trading players once Team Canada's camp starts for the World Juniors). Barrie and Sudbury are having a fire sales to contribute to their rebuilding while Oshawa, Niagara and Saginaw are paying up to boost their chances.
  • Speaking of boosting, the Booster Club held their Christmas Banquet on Monday. It was very enjoyable and gave me insights to the many things they do for the players and their families. There was a gift for each player (given by Santa) as well as monetary awards for one-ice results. Everyone looked like they had a good time largely because the players are so good with their fans. If you get a chance, check out the Booster Club and give them your support.
  • The attendance (4819) was pretty good considering that the Sens had a home game too (16,471 attendance). Both teams won (a rarity when they play on the same day). The relatively small crowd (Brampton and Mississauga would love to see crowds that size) made up for it with boisterous and loud enthusiasm. Nothing like lots of kids (and a sprinkling of vuvuzelas - as long as you are not sitting in front of one) to create a great atmosphere.
More Pictures: Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug Click here to see more pictures from the game.

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