October 14, 2013

Konecny the shootout hero in a 5-4 barnburner win over the Wolves

Travis Konecny scored the pivotal game-tying goal and shootout winner as the Ottawa 67’s rallied to beat the Sudbury Wolves 5-4 on Sunday afternoon.

The 67’s, trailing 3-1 midway through the 3rd, got a pair of powerplay goals from Joseph Blandisi and Nevin Guy to tie the game up at 3.  Both goals were shot from the same spot on the ice & got past Franky Palazzese who was in nets.  After going 3/24 in the last 5 games, the 67’s had a success of 2/3 on the powerplay this afternoon.

“Two games ago we had good patience on the powerplay and we had some good results.  Last game we were really hurried,“ coach Chris Byrne explained.  “I think when we have patience, we have guys to make plays and we just have to settle things down a little bit.”

The 3-3 tie was erased quickly.  In less than 30 seconds, the Wolves regained their 1-goal lead with a sharp angle shot from Orleans native Nathan Pancel that found a hole between Philippe Trudeau’s pad and the goal post.  A goal he certainly would like to have back.

The 4-3 Wolves goal came with less than 2 minutes left it the game.  It seemed natural for a team to roll over and be deflated after a goal like that, but the 67’s did not give up.  With the 67’s net empty for an extra attacker, the 67’s battled hard and were rewarded with a goal.  Travis Konecny scored in a scramble out front for his fourth goal of the season with 30 seconds left in the game.

“That fourth goal they got, they scored it right after we got one there.  I think we were still on a high after we scored our goal and we just knew we were going and if we kept things simple and kept going then we were going to pop one in and sure enough, we got one there at the end,” said Konecny.

With six goals scored in the third including five in the final 10 minutes, the 67’s were able to hold on for the final seconds to force overtime.  There were several chances at both ends of the ice in the extra frame, but no one was able to solve neither Palazzese nor Trudeau.

On to the shootout.

After the first two shooters were stopped, Brendan Bell kicked off the scoring for his second shootout goal of the season (he is 100% now).  Ottawa native, Nicholas Baptiste put one past Trudeau immediately after.  With the next Wolves’ shooter, Dominik Kubalik stopped - Konency was set up for the game winner and capitalized.

“It’s pretty exciting.  It’s really good for us to get the win and I’m glad we came out with two points tonight,” said Konency who was named the game’s third star.

Chris Byrne has more praise for the youngster.  “I thought he was one of our best guys up front offensively, if not our best guy.  Definitely helped us win.”

The win gets the 67’s back into .500 and back tied in 5th in the Eastern Conference  before their 4-game road trip starting Thursday.

“Well it’s a big win, it gets us to .500.  We got some points there early in the year and we’re right in the mix in the middle of our conference.  After 10 games, if that’s where we said we’d be, we’d be happy with that start and something for us to build on,” said a content Chris Byrne.

The 67’s also got a goal from Ryan Van Stralen to kick off the scoring.  He was named the hardest working 67's.  Newly acquired Connor Crisp, Danny Desrochers and Nicholas Baptiste also scored for the Wolves. 

After playing the first nine of ten games at home, the 67’s travel to Niagara for their second road game on Thursday night. 

Game sheet can be found here.

Three Stars as Selected by TSN1200
Hardest working 67's:  Ryan Van Stralen Hardest Working 67's: Ryan Van Stralen 

Some pictures from the game:
  Nevin Guy ties it up.
Click here to see more pictures.

And if you like to see some Ottawa fall beauty, click here.  Happy Thanksgiving to our Canadian readers. 

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