February 19, 2011

No Bull - Ottawa Wins 5 - 1

The Ottawa 67's more than made up for their lackluster play in Belleville on Wednesday with a strong game here to completely dominate the Belleville Bulls.

Shayne Campbell was solid between the pipes, making 30 saves on 31 shots - the only goal against coming on a PP (and he nearly had that one too).

Click here for the game sheet.

The story was Tyler Toffoli bookending the scoring with the first and last goals of the game as he inches his way to his personal goal of 50 goals this season. He sits atop of the league for goals scored with 48. He is second in scoring with 92 points, 2 points behind Jason Akeson of the Kitchener Rangers.

It started just over 4 minutes into the game as the top line was repeated frustrating the Bulls' attempts to control the puck and clear the zone. Tyler Toffoli picked off a Belleville pass, stepped into the slot and slapped it past Teichmann for the unassisted goal.

Less than three minutes later, the top line once again made the Bulls pay for sloppy play in their own end. Shane Prince started it, picking the pocket of Belleville rookie Joe Underwood at the point and starting a tic-tac-toe play with Tyler Toffoli and Ryan Martindale before finishing it off with a tap-in past Teichmann to put Ottawa up by 2. That goal stood as the eventual GWG, his 6th of the season.

Thomas Nesbitt gave Ottawa a 3-goal lead with a PPG early in the second by tapping in the puck as it sat behind Teichmann near the goal line. Ryan Martindale and Shane Prince with the assists.

But the Bulls got that one back with a PPG of their own just a couple of minutes later when Luke Judson one-timed a cross-crease pass past Campbell. They had a couple of chances to get within 1 on a later PP but Campbell and his team mates had other plans and kept Belleville off the board.

Ben Dubois restored the 3-goal lead picked up a deflected shot from Julian Luciani and put it into the wide-open net. Dalton Smith with the second assist.

Tyler Toffoli's 48th goal of the season came less than 5 minutes into the third period when Ryan Martindale's shot deflected in off him. Julian Luciani with the other assist. Julian has played well against his former team.

Neither team gave up but it was clear that Ottawa was going to skate away with this win giving Ottawa the win in 6 of the 7 games these two teams have played, only losing the first game of the season.

They travel to Brampton for a Sunday afternoon game and then to Kingston for another afternoon game on Family Day. Ottawa has won 2 of the three games against Brampton this year.

Three Stars as selected by the Team1200
Hardest working 67's
Hardest Working 67's as selected by the Team1200:Julian Luciani

Random Thoughts:
  • Solid solid team game for 60 minutes. Great to see. Hope we see more of this.
  • Good to see Shayne Campbell with a this strong home win. He gave out some juicy rebounds early but his team played well in front of him, clearing the puck away and he got better control as the game went on.
  • Ottawa rookies Taylor Fielding and Ryan Shipley don't hesitate to drop the gloves. Both engaged in some fisticuffs. Fielding hurt his hand and left the game while Shipley got bloodied. Neither player with a clear decision on their tilts.
  • All four lines played well and had great scoring chances. Teichmann kept the score from being much worse.
  • Sean Monahan didn't get any points in this game but he has quietly moved up the rookie scoring ranks with 14 points in the previous 10 games.
  • Belated happy 19th birthday to Petr Mrazek.
  • Milestone game for Nesbitt and Gibbons on Wednesday in Belleville: Nesbitt with his 201st point and Gibbons with his 101st point in their OHL careers.
More Pictures: Click here to see more pictures from the game.

February 12, 2011

Ottawa Digs for 4-3 Win Over Erie

It wasn't a masterpiece but the Ottawa 67's overcame a sluggish first period to take the win against Erie on Friday night at the Rona Centre and extend their winning streak to 5 games. The loss ended Erie's streak at 2.

Click here for the game sheet.

After missing 18 games with post-concussion symptoms Jon Carnevale returned to the ice with all cylinders firing, bringing energy, delivering big hits, and scoring 2G and 1A including a big goal in this game to get his team on the board.

Playing their first game of their East Division swing through the league, the Erie Otters played a strong road game. They had the early jump on the 67's, out-shot them 14 - 4 in the first got on the board early when Brett Thompson put a rebound over Mrazek's shoulder.

The 67's managed to sort out some of their sloppy, disorganized play and get going in the second period, getting more pucks on net but more importantly tying the game. In a hard-nosed drive to the net Jon Carnevale slipped the puck 5-hole to finally tie the game. Adam Sedlak assisted.

Both teams got down to scoring business in the third with Erie making good on a 43-second 5-on-3 advantage with Lindsay first in the box for high-sticking followed up by Zanetti for delay of game (puck over the glass). Szydlowski one-timed a great pass from Varone to put the Otters back on top. Ottawa successfully defended the remainder of the Zanetti penalty.

Erie played Ottawa close, doing a good job of taking time and space away but Shane Prince can be hard to contain which he demonstrated ably with a great wrap-around goal that beat big Sadikov to tie it up again. Tyler Graovac assisted.

But before the goal announcement was finished, Cazzola was sprung on a break-away and beat Mrazek glove-side to re-gain the lead for the third time.

To this point, there had only been two penalties handed out in the game and both were to Ottawa at the beginning of the third. Erie finally had their turn to defend and Tyler Toffoli tipped it in from in front of the crease. Ryan Martindale and Cody Ceci with the assists.

Then Dalton Smith surprised Radikov with a one-timer from the face-off dot that beat him short-side and finally give Ottawa the lead. The resurgent Jon Carnevale had the only assist on that critical GWG.

The 67's went on to protect their one-goal lead for the remaining three and a half minutes to deliver their 20th win on home ice in front of 5760 fans.

They immediately hit the road for their game in Barrie tonight and an important match-up against Mississauga on Sunday. Once again, they play the best team in the conference as a third-in-two-and-a-half-day game.

But first they need to focus their game in Barrie who was shellacked 7 - 0 by Niagara on Friday. They won't be in a good mood and despite their record (and that score), they can present tough opposition. The last time the Ottawa 67's looked past their opponents in anticipation of the Mississauga game, the Oshawa Generals stormed back from a 3-goal deficit in the third to beat the 67's 6 - 5. No team can be taken lightly and with Oshawa's loss on Friday, Ottawa now has a 6-point lead on them with tonight's game in hand. These 2 points are critical.

As for Sunday's game, the Majors were dealt a rare defeat on Friday, on home ice to boot, on a buzzer-beating PPG by Plymouth. Following the comments on twitter, many are calling out the officiating in that game. Mississauga has today off to prepare for the 67's on Sunday. They will be rested and in no mood for another loss at all, much less on home ice.

All in all a key road trip for the 67's.

Three Stars as selected by the Team1200

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

Random Thoughts:
  • Congratulations to Ryan Shipley who was named the East Division OHL Academic Player of the Month for January.
  • The Ottawa 67's drew back into the CHL Mastercard Top 10 rankings. Results will do that. Well done team!
  • A match-up between the two least penalized teams in the league and true to form only three penalties called, including one that was over the glass.
  • With such potent scoring power, the 67's have played more often with the lead than from behind (if memory serves me correctly). It was good to see them overcome their early sludge and dig hard for the win.
  • Nice to see point contributions from across the roster - makes the team more dangerous.
  • Happy birthday to Julian Luciani. His gift to the team - drawing the hooking penalty that resulted in the final tying goal. Well done.
  • I love the tradition of singing the national anthems before games and I really enjoy it when the club brings young choirs in. A very young lad (maybe 6 years old?) sitting in the first row lustily accompanied the Holy Redeemer Catholic School choir. Fabulous!
More Pictures:
Child cancer survivor Ziad delivers the game puck. The University of Ottawa medical students held their Shave for the Cure night at the game.
Click here to see more pictures from the game.

February 06, 2011

Zzzzz'ing through a 67's 4 - 0 Win over London

In what can be charitably described as a less-than-exciting game, the Ottawa 67's broke through the mind-numbing trapping of the London Knights to give Mrazek his third home shut-out of the season.

Click here for the game sheet.
Give the Knights full marks for keeping the 67's at bay for the better part of this game. The Knights were down to icing only three lines in this 3rd-in-three road game. Illness swept through the team starting on Friday and by today they had listed 8 players as scratches. Throw in some bus issues along the way just to mix it up and you have all the reasons you need to play as defensively as possible for as long as possible.

So, the London strategy was to trap right from the get-go. Ottawa had a tough time breaking through it, Stretch passes were interrupted or went for icing, the neutral zone was impenetrable and London did a good job of keeping play in their offensive zone for decent stretches.

The shots that did get through, big Bobkov managed stop just by being big although he was also positionally pretty good in many cases. He did his part to keep this game close for a long time.

The first goal of the game didn't come until just under 8 minutes left in the second. Julian Luciani scored his 3rd goal of the season when his shot from the point made it past Bobkov on a deflection off his own player, Tinordi.

At this point the SOGs were 18 - 8 for Ottawa and London had just two in the period so far. But they started getting their chances and Mrazek had to make a few good saves to preserve the tenuous lead.

By the third period, the wear and tear on London was taking its toll and the 67's were able to keep them skating and from setting up the trap. And the scoring chances and goals followed.

Before the halfway mark of the third, Jon Carnevale was credited with a goal that Tinordi actually put in his own net. But that was because this hard working line was creating havoc in front of the net. Dalton Smith and Tyler Graovac were credited with the assists. It was good to see this line finally show up on the scoreboard given all their hard work.

Then it was Marc Zanetti's shot from the point that beat a screened Bobkov to put the 67's up by three with just under 6 minutes left in the game.

With Sedlak in the penalty box for slashing and just over 5 minutes to go, down 3 - 0, Dale Hunter pulled Bobkov for the extra attacker. Two Ottawa skaters each managed to get control of the puck at about their goal line and send down the ice towards the empty net and twice the puck went just wide - in just about the same spot. Taking matters into his own hands (or stick I guess) Petr Mrazek managed to get ahold of the puck and he too tried to score the EN, but his went way wider. The PP ended with London getting only one shot on goal.

The RST line rounded out the scoring with Ryan Martindale's shot from the slot to put the 67's up 4 - 0 with about a minute and a half left. Shane Prince and Tyler Toffoli with the assists.

So all that was left was for the 67's to preserve the shut-out for Mrazek which they did easily.

With their two wins this weekend the 67's officially clinched the playoffs and maintain their 4-point divisional lead on the Oshawa Generals who also won their games this weekend. And they are even in games-played against their closest rivals.

Ottawa ranks second in the league in GF at 214 in 50 games (Owen Sound Attack has 222 in 52 games) and third in the league in GA with 150 (behind Niagara with 142 in 50 games and Mississauga with just 121 in 49 games). And Ottawa remains the least penalized team in the league.

Next Friday, Ottawa hosts the Erie Otters before starting a tough road schedule.

Three Stars as selected by the Team1200

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

Random Thoughts:
  • Wish the OHL published game stats like face-offs, hits, etc. It would be interesting to know Monahan's face-off stats.
  • I happened to catch the tail-end of last Monday's practice where they held a drill/competition for nailing empty-netters from the front of one of the goals. Two players (who shall remain nameless) kept missing over and over again. A meaningless drill at the end of a practice? Gauging from today's results, not at all. Keep practicing boys.
  • Was chatting with a NJD scout during the second intermission and even he thought it was a pretty boring game. NJD!
  • We should be receiving this year's "Through Our Lenses" this week. Be sure to get your copy of this limited edition either at the Booster Club table at home games or by contacting me at through the email address bruggbllitz@hotmail.com. This high-quality keepsake is $35 (plus shipping where necessary).
More Pictures: Click here to see more pictures from the game.

February 05, 2011

Ottawa Tops Petes 6 - 2

The RST line was reunited with the return of Shane Prince and they were back in business putting together 7 points including a rare but beautiful 3-on-0 tic-tack-toe play that Shane Prince finished with a top shelf goal.

Click here for the game sheet.

In the 8th and final regular season match-up between these divisional rivals, it was pretty much all Ottawa....most of the time. The team still struggles to put in a full 60-minute game but they survived it this time.

With 42 saves on 48 shots, and many of them good scoring chances, Peterborough goalie Andrew D'Agostini did his best to keep his team in the game but the Pete's were reward him with a better result.

Ottawa started with a jump and early pressure resulting in Ryan Martindale getting the only goal of the first period and giving the 67's the lead that they would not relinquish. Tyler Toffoli with the assist.

Early in the second period, Ryan Martindale notched his 29th goal of the season on the PP to give Ottawa the 2 - 0 lead.

But the prettiest goal of the game (it will likely be on YouTube sometime soon) came as the Peterborough Petes were doing a pretty good job of thwarting the 67's attempts to clear the zone. Then one of the Pete's defenders (Kalle Ekelund?) blew a tire trying to stop the puck at the blue line and it went right to Tyler Toffoli who broke out with Ryan Martindale and Shane Prince on a 3-on-0 rush. Toffoli fed it to Martindale who tipped it back to Prince who promptly snapped it top shelf on a literally defenseless D'Agonstino. That was also the GWG which is a nice way for Shane to return.

As has been a habit with this team, they once again lost their sense of urgency and got sloppy in their own end and left Matt Puempel alone in the slot to break Mrazek's chances for the shutout.

Thomas Nesbitt got it back before the period ended on a great cross-crease pass from Sean Monahan. Cody Lindsay with the second assist.

Ottawa started the third period with 39 seconds remaining in Sedlak's tripping penalty in the second and Austin Watson made it a two-goal game 26 seconds in.

The 67's continued to look a little flat in the early going in the third but with goals from Tyler Toffoli and Cody Lindsay the game was over for Peterborough.

So the regular season games between these divisional rivals are done with Ottawa winning 7 of the 8 games.

Ottawa now prepares to host the London Knights on Sunday.

Three Stars as selected by the Team1200

Hardest Working 67's
Hardest Working 67's as selected by the Team1200: Cody Lindsay
Random Thoughts:
  • Cody Lindsay's outstanding results from last weekend (back-to-back hat trick games) was acknowledged with being named the OHL and CHL player of the week. Congratulations Cody!
  • As expected, Sean Monahan continued to centre Lindsay and Nesbitt. Dalton Smith played with Graovac and Foglia creating a tough checking line. Ottawa now has three solid lines with Dubois and Carnevale waiting for the return of Janes and Fontana to round out a 4th line.
  • Peterborough was able to keep Ottawa's PP pretty much in check, allowing only 1 goal in 6 PPs.
  • Had a rare chance to take photos from between the benches. It's always interesting to hear the friendly chatter that goes on.
  • And speaking of friendly, there was some chippiness going on. A few scrums and pushing. Peterborough's Geoff Bezruchko and Marc Zanetti went at it and once the tilt was done and the linesmen had them down, Bezruchko wouldn't cease and desist. He was shown the gate for his efforts.
  • A well-attended game where Ottawa's first responders, (Police, Paramedic and Fire) were honoured.
More Pictures: Click here to see more pictures from the game.