December 05, 2014

67's Split Two, Stop Three-Game Slide

They had to do it without their goalie who has been one of the league’s best on home ice, but the Ottawa 67’s managed to avoid extending their three-game losing skid on Friday.

Leo Lazarev, although caught being too aggressive and sliding too far out of his net at times, ended up putting in his best performance in his thus-short OHL career to pick up the win. 

Jake Middleton, Dante Salituro, Travis Konecny and Dylan McDonald all tallied for the 67’s in yet another victory on home soil.

Dragged into the trenches

The 67’s have had a rough past with the IceDogs dating back to their days in Mississauga, but this one was even more intense given the league’s decline in rough stuff.

For a Niagara team that leads the Eastern Conference in fighting majors this wasn’t exactly new. 

For Konecny, on the other hand, it was very new to him, getting into his first career scrap with Zach Wilkie (only in his second career fight, his first one was a decisive loss at the hands of Brendan Bell, also on the ice at the time of this one).

Sam Studnicka is at risk of a lengthy suspension for a headshot (and ensuing fighting major) early in the third period.   Troy Henley also racked up a fighting major on the evening.

The Franchise’ Future

It didn’t last long as a top unit but watching Konecny and Travis Barron on the same line was a great glimpse into the future.

It hasn’t been showing up on the scoresheets, but Barron is quietly one of Ottawa’s strongest players of late, clearly their best forechecker and creating scoring chances off the cycle.

Gusty comeback in Belleville

You can’t spell “guts” without “Gustavsen”, but don’t tell the 67’s that.

Despite two goals from ex-teammate Brett Gustavsen, Ottawa put together a brilliantly-executed third period comeback to almost pull a point away from the Belleville Bulls on Wednesday, a last-minute goal by Remi Elie doing them in.

The most costly loss of the night, however, came with that of Liam Herbst, who was injured on a reckless cross-crease collision with Jordan Subban

Granted, it wasn’t the worst player-goalie cheapshot involving a Subban brother, but it was a close second.

Herbst has been ruled out for Sunday’s matchup with the Barrie Colts.

The 67’s sit two points above the Colts, just holding on to home ice advantage as the halfway point of the season starts to come up.

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