67's Notch Second Straight 50-Win Season with a Tuesday Night Gain over Niagara
OTTAWA - The Ottawa 67's collected their 50th win of the season and their seventh consecutive win on Tuesday night inside The Arena at TD Place, when they defeated the Niagara IceDogs by a big score of 9 to 1. Joe Garreffa (twice), Dylan Robinson, Noel Hoefenmayer, Austen Keating, Jack Quinn, Jack Beck, Marco all scored for Ottawa in the winning effort.
The 67's came out buzzing in the first period. Joseph Garreffa opened the game's scoring just over five minutes into the first, before Dylan Robinson, who had missed the team's last 50 games due to a hip surgery, scored his first in a Barber Pole uniform just about a minute later. Noel Hoefenmayer, Garreffa and Keating all added one to make it 5-0 Ottawa after 20 minutes.
The IceDogs held their own in the second by scoring the first goal of the period, thus making it 5-1 thanks to an Ivan Lodnia one-timer. The 50-goal man Jack Quinn answered for Ottawa with their only goal of the second, scoring his 52nd of the season on the power play to make it 6-1 after forty.
Jack Beck and Marco Rossi added goals to the 67's lead one after the other in only 3:16 of play into the third, but it was the last goal of the game that somehow got the loudest cheer from the crowd, as rookie Thomas Johnston finally found the back of the net for his first career Ontario Hockey League goal, after countless efforts to finally get the monkey off his back, the youngster finally did it with a backhanded beauty that went under the bar and made it worth the wait.
Following this dominant 9-1 win, the Barber Poles are looking ahead to a busy schedule for the rest of this week. They'll be hosting the Oshawa Generals for an Eastern Conference battle Friday night, before they kick off a home and home series against Kingston, in which they'll be travelling to Kingston on Saturday, before hosting the Frontenacs Sunday afternoon inside The Arena at TD Place.
POST GAME COMMENTS
Head Coach André Tourigny
"Today had a lot of special things happen in this game. It was our 50th win, it was another good performance. We'll be honest, the last three games could've been a trap, but our guys behaved like pros, they approached those games focusing on what we wanted to do and what we had to do. To see the guys rally behind TJ in North Bay and again tonight, to see the reaction from everyone when he scored, to see him be so relieved and so happy, it's a good boost for everybody, it's good emotion. To see Robbie coming back from an injury that kept him out for so long, he barely practiced with us and jumped right away in the game, to see him play like that, it was good as well. He made a lot of good plays, he skated well, so I'm sure he's feeling good about himself right now, so all of that is pretty positive for our team.
D Noel Hoefenmayer
On reaching 50 wins... "It's an honor. From the start of the season, we never really looked towards winning a certain amount of games, our mindset since the coaches have come in has been process and attitude, so we haven't really thought about getting to 50, but when you do, it's pretty cool, especially with such a storied franchise like ours, it means a lot."
On Thomas Johnston scoring his first... "That was the highlight of the night for sure. TJ has had so many chances this year, and for him to finally get one like that and put it in the way he did, it wasn't an easy goal so it was amazing."
Three Stars of the game: * Joe Garreffa (2G) ; ** Dylan Robinson (1G); *** Thomas Johnston (1G)
A total of 4,741 fans took in this game inside The Arena at TD Place.
Marco Rossi had an outstanding night as well with 1G, 3A for four points.
Rossi now has two consecutive four point nights. Rossi is now at 120 points in just 56 games this season, and is now tied with Connor McDavid for the 6th most points by an OHL draft-eligible skater in the last 25 years.
Will Cranley collected his 18th win of the season with 21 saves on the night. He now has a record of 18-2-0-0 this season.
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