January 11, 2015

67's fall 5-2 to Frontenacs despite nearly doubling shots

The 67’s suffered a 5-2 home loss at the hands of the Kingston Frontenacs Sunday afternoon, but it wasn’t due to a shortage of chances.

Despite being down seven players due to injury or suspension, Ottawa registered 42 shots on Fronts netminder Lucas Peressini, but his 40 save performance earned him second star and brought his team to a 16-16-4-2 record so far this season.

The Fronts managed to score 5 goals on their 24 shots.

“We doubled their shots,” said 67’s head coach Jeff Brown. “We’ve had a few (games) that maybe we shouldn’t have won, and we won. But that was one that I felt like we deserved to win.”

A fast-paced game from the start, the 67’s got on the board first 7:28 into the game with Trent Mallette burying in a rebound off a Brandon Lukezic shot.

Kingston’s Robert Polesello took a hooking penalty, giving the 67’s a powerplay with just over 8 minutes to go in the first, but Ottawa was unable to capitalize. Polesello got redemption later in the period when he scored to tie the game on a 3-on-1 rush. 

The lone second-period goal came just over 3 minutes in when Lawson Crouse banked a shot off the goalpost past Leo Lazarev giving the Fronts a 2-1 lead. Crouse, who was recognized by the 67’s and fans in the first period for his participation in the World Juniors, received first star for his two-point performance.

The 3,356 fans kicked off the third period with chants and hollers, but despite the boisterous crowd, Sam Schutt managed to give the Frontenacs a 3-1 lead just a minute and a half in.

The game’s third star, Travis Konecny, gave the 67’s a glimmer of hope a little over four minutes later. He shot high over Peressini to bring the 67’s within one again, but the unassisted goal wasn’t enough.

Kingston took back their two-goal lead midway through the third when Ted Nichol scored his first of the season. 

Desperate for the comeback, the 67’s pulled Lazarev with about 3 minutes to go in the game in favour of an extra attacker. But with 2:44 left in the period, Schutt scored an empty-netter, his second goal of the game.

The 67’s kept firing shots until the dying seconds, but Peressini put on a stellar performance for the Fronts, holding onto the 5-2 lead.

Despite the loss, Brown was pleased with the 67’s effort.

“We’ve got five regular defensemen who weren’t in the lineup tonight, and the young kids stepped up and played hard,” he said. “I was pretty happy today actually. Disappointing on the loss but with what we had, I thought we worked really hard.”

The 67’s were without Liam Herbst, Ryan Orban, Jeremiah Addison, Mike Vlajkov, Jacob Middleton, Evan de Haan, Zack Pitman and Dylan McDonald.

Brown expects Middleton to possibly be back next weekend, and fans will see the return of Herbst.

“He’ll get the start on Friday.”

The 67’s currently sit fourth in the Eastern conference, with a record of 20-18-1-1.

As teams head into the last two months of the regular season, Brown says the plan for the 67’s heading into the last stretch is “just continue to work hard.”

Ottawa’s next game will be played Friday at 7:30pm at TD Stadium against the Owen Sound Attack who currently sit sixth in the Western conference.

Three Stars as selected by TSN1200 (second star, Lucas Peressini did not take a turn):

Hardest working 67's:  Trent Mallette
Hardest working 67's:  Trent Mallette

  Some pictures from the game: 

Call-up Willa  Brown in his first OHL game
William Brown in his first OHL game, called up to bolster the depleted D-corps 

One of the many chances that the 67's didn't bury

Coach Jeff Brown drawing it out for the team

Click here to see more pictures.

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