February 01, 2015

Team Canada star too much for 67's

TD Place was jam-packed for Sunday afternoon’s 7-2 loss with 6,200 fans eager to see the next big name in hockey.

The Erie Otters made their way to Ottawa to take on the hometown 67’s, but fans filled the seats for a glimpse of Erie’s Connor McDavid specifically.

McDavid recently represented Canada on the international stage at the 2015 IIHF World Juniors, and played an important role in bringing home the gold medal. The Otters’ forward recorded 11 points during the tournament, and currently sits 10th in the league in scoring with 69 points in just 27 games played due to a broken hand.

The sellout was a first for the 67’s this season.

“It was definitely an awesome experience for all the guys who haven’t had a packed barn playing here,” said 67’s captain Travis Konecny. “For me it was pretty cool seeing all the fans out there.”

“Every night, they are a good support,” he added. “Having a full house makes it all that much better.”

McDavid says he and his team have adjusted to the crowds.

“We are kind of used to it now,” he said.

Despite the loss, fans were treated to an entertaining game from the start. Just 1:49 into the game, 67’s Brendan Bell squared off at center ice against Erie’s Cory Genovese. They were each handed five-minute majors for fighting.

The 67’s managed to draw first blood 14:23 into the game when Bell caught his own rebound and shot the puck past Erie goaltender, Devin Williams.  This would be the only lead of the game for Ottawa.

Late in the first, Nevin Guy was sent off for slashing, giving the Otters their first powerplay. About a minute later, Alex DeBrincat scored for the Otters to tie the game. McDavid was given an assist on the play, giving him his 70th point of the season.

The Otters’ powerplay wasn’t done yet. Seven minutes into the second Dante Salituro was called for hooking. Just 23 seconds into the penalty, Travis Dermott scored, giving the Otters a 2-1 lead. Assists were given to Dylan Strome and McDavid.

The 67’s had some good chances, but Erie managed to head into the dressing room with a 4-1 lead on goals by Strome and Ottawa native Nicholas Baptiste by the end of the second.

Early in the third, Erie’s Jake Marchment made it 5-1 after he was able to get the puck past Herbst in the middle of a scramble in the crease.

Ottawa coach Jeff Brown decided to pull Herbst in favour of Leo Lazarev. The switch seemed to ignite Ottawa momentarily. Less than a minute after Erie’s fifth goal, Connor Graham skated up the ice with the puck before passing to Sam Studnicka, who made no mistake burying it fast past Williams to make it 5-2.

But it was too little too late for the home team. They allowed two more goals in the game, both less than a minute apart from Remi Elie and Kurtis MacDermid.

Emotions ran high to the very end. With under three minutes remaining in the game, Bell had his second fight on the night against Travis Dermott. Both were sent off.

The 67’s did edge the Otters on the shot clock, recording 28 shots against Erie’s 26.

“I thought our guys did a nice job,” said Brown after the game. “We outshot them. They just scored on their opportunities and we didn’t.”

Brown also said the schedule needs to be considered.

“[We played] Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. Getting home at 3:00 in the morning and [the Otters] are rested here Saturday night,” said Brown. “It was tough.”

But Konecny disagrees with his coach.

“We’re a well-conditioned team. We work hard and we’re prepared for those road trips,” he said. “Every team goes through it.”

McDavid seemed to agree with Brown more, acknowledging a difficult week for the 67’s.

“I thought they started off well,” he said. “It’s hard playing the night before and then coming back and having to play an afternoon game. For the conditions, I thought they played well.”


The 67’s announced that their fundraising efforts for Smiths Falls Bears player Neil Doef during the January 18th game against the Peterborough Petes raised $12,122. During Sunday’s matchup, OSEG president Jeff Hunt presented Doef’s grandfather, Ernie Beaupre, with the cheque.

The 67’s raised the money for Doef who suffered a spinal cord injury at a tournament in the prairies in December.

Game sheet can be found here.  

Three Stars as selected by TSN1200

Hardest Working 67's:  Sam Studnicka with Ottawa's second goal.
Hardest working 67's: Sam Studnicka 

 Some pictures from the game: 

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug
Jeremiah Addison keeps his eye on the puck as he intercepts it
Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug
Travis Konecny fights through a check
Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug
Dylan McDonald patrolling the neutral zone.

Click here to see more pictures.

No comments: