Ottawa native Scott Sabourin scored the winning shootout goal as the Oshawa Generals skated to 4-3 victory over the Ottawa 67’s in their first meeting of the season.
Not off to a great start, the 67’s didn’t get their first shot until the 10:26 mark of the first period. While the offense wasn’t great, Keegan Wilson made a couple costly saves to keep his team in the game. But it wasn’t long after when Boone Jenner scored 12 seconds into the powerplay to draw first blood with a quick knuckle shot up high in the slot.
After their first powerplay opportunity, the 67’s began to wake up. The 67’s finished with 6 shots in the last 9 minutes of the first period.
Asked about the lack lustre first period play, 67’s head coach Chris Byrne responded, “It’s a good team coming in here and I think our guys were a little back on their heels to start and once we started competing and play hard the results were a lot better.”
He was right. Building off some momentum after the first period, Sean Monahan responded with his own quick powerplay goal 46 seconds into the second period to tie the game. However, a costly giveaway behind the Ottawa net led to a go-ahead Generals goal as Tyler Biggs took advantage of being in the right spot at the right time.
On the powerplay, Cody Ceci made a crisp pass from behind the net as Remy Giftopolous one timed it past Daniel Altshuller and into the back of the net to tie the game at 2.
In the third, Jake Cardwell made a great spin-off move to lose the defender, fed the puck Monahan who tried to tap in but Ryan Van Stralen grabbed the rebound and made no mistake to shovel it in stick side giving the 67’s their first lead of the game.
It was short lived after another costly giveaway after Wilson misplayed the puck giving Biggs a wide target. Off a sharp angle shot, Biggs was awarded with his second unassisted goal of the night.
Two goals on two bad plays cost the 67’s a regulation win. Byrne explains, “You’re going to make mistakes out there and if we say if we are hardworking and working hard and we make mistakes and we are going to live with them, the ones we can’t handle are ones where guys are not working hard.”
The 67’s had a great opportunity to win the game at the 2:34 minute mark after Scott Laughton was slapped with a 5 minute major for checking to the head combined with a game misconduct. Scott Laughton caught Daniel Walsh with a blind-sided hit to the head. Walsh didn’t return, but he is expected to play next game. The 67’s were unable to capitalize on the long man advantage and the game headed to the shootout.
In the shootout, Graovac was the only Ottawa goal scorer while Jenner and Sabourin were the Oshawa goal scorers. Big night for Sabourin who had a box of family and friends cheering him on.
The 67’s put in a great effort, but Coach Byrne is sick of hearing about it. “Well, it’s the same old story,” he told us. “We are tired of good efforts we want to win hockey games. Losing is not fun. Losing is not what we do. So, we’re not happy with our game.”
The team is hopeful that Janes makes a return to the lineup. The 67’s have a couple days of rest until they head out on Friday night to visit the Kingston Frontenacs.
Click here for the game sheet.
Click here for the game sheet.
Three Stars as Selected by the Team1200
Hardest Working 67's: Ryan Van StralenRandom Thoughts from Behind the Lens:
- The first period was a sleeper by both teams. While it took Ottawa over halfway through the first period to register a shot on goal, Oshawa only had 5 at that time so neither team was lighting it up.
- Nice return for Ryan Van Stralen - getting a nice clean-up goal.
- For a while there it seemed that every time an Ottawa player wanted to pass or chip, an Oshawa body got in the way. And the spirit of Jason Spezza must be floating around here somewhere - starting to see blind, drop and touch passes to nowhere.
- Don't know why I'm noticing it but the line changes look really sharp this year.
- Walsh took a pretty good knock to the noggin'. He went right to the dressing room. I would be surprised to see him back on the ice so quickly. And speaking of surprises, he's still considered a rookie since he only played a handful of games last year. It seems like he's been around much longer than that.
- And last but not least, a belated Happy Birthday to Kathryn, today's writer. Thanks for working on your birthday!
Andrew Abou-Assaly spending a quiet moment before the warmup.
Early save by Wilson
The showdown - he scored!
Click here to see more pictures from the game.