April 05, 2015

67's eliminated in first round in 4-3 loss to Ice Dogs

The Ottawa 67’s post-season ended abruptly on Easter Sunday as they fell 4-3 to the Ice Dogs in Niagara in the OHL playoffs' first round. 

Things looked good for the Barberpoles to start the second period. After giving up a goal earlier in the first, Brendan Bell set up Dante Salituro who blasted a shot past Brandon Hope to tie the game at one with just 18 seconds remaining.

The momentum shift was obvious as the 67’s came out flying in the second period, controlling the play for the first half, hammering Hope with good scoring chances.

Niagara managed to take back the lead on a goal by Cody Payne 8:52 into the second frame, but Taylor Davis answered quickly, tying it back up less than two minutes later.

But the Ice Dogs’ Vince Dunn and Brendan Perlini both scored in the later half of the second to give Niagara a 4-2 lead.

The 67’s looked like a comeback was possible in the third when Nevin Guy brought them within one just over five minutes in.

Ottawa head coach Jeff Brown pulled Liam Herbst late in the third for the sixth attacker.

With just over a minute to go in the game, in a heartbreaking turn of events, Sam Studnicka took a hit in the corner and lost his visor. The 67’s forward played the puck anyway, earning himself an illegal equipment penalty.

Brown opted to keep the net empty despite the penalty, but the 67’s ran out of time before they could beat Hope.

Shots were 30-29 in favour of the Ice Dogs in a close, physical game that kept fans entertained. 
The 67’s won the first two games of the series decisively in Ottawa, putting up scores of 8-5 and 8-2 respectively.

But the Ice Dogs went on to win the next four games, bringing the 67’s post-season to an early end.

The 67’s finished fourth in the Eastern conference after a 38-25-4-1 season.

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