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 Kingston Frontenacs

Game Day Preview: KGN vs HAM

February 19, 2022 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL)
Kingston Frontenacs News Release


The Kingston Frontenacs (27-12-3-0) will play the second end of back-to-back games today on the road versus the Hamilton Bulldogs (27-11-2-2). The matchup is another battle for the Eastern Division's top spot. The evenly matched rivals face off for the seventh time today, with the Fronts winning four, scoring at least five goals in each win. Coming off a 7-2 victory over the Ottawa 67's last night, coach Luca Caputi's group is looking for a fourth straight win. The team is sitting one point back of Hamilton entering this afternoon's action.

The Frontenacs are the only team to beat Hamilton during the Bulldogs' last 13 games, doing it two times. Hamilton's 5-4 loss to Kingston in the teams' previous matchup on February 13 followed a 5-2 Kingston win on January 21.

Goalie Leevi Meriläinen made 53 saves, including 20 in the final period boosting the Frontenacs to the 5-4 win in the last matchup. After Kingston went down a pair of goals in the first period, the Fronts scored four unanswered before Gage Heyes' tallied the game-winner with under nine minutes to play. Jordan Frasca and Paul Ludwinski each scored twice. Frasca has scored six goals and three assists against Hamilton, tying linemate Lucas Edmonds (5G,4A) with nine points in the six-game season series thus far.

Offensive Threats

Both teams bring similar potent offences, with the Bulldogs 179 team goals, just one more than the Frontenacs.

In his 100th career game, Francesco Arcuri became the fourth 50-point producer for Kingston with a pair of goals in Friday's win over Ottawa, while captain Shane Wright scored his 20th, bringing the total to five 20-goal players in the Fronts offence (178 - fourth-most goals OHL).

Bulldogs leading point-getter Logan Morrison has points in nine consecutive games (10G,7A) as one of five 40-plus point producers and three 20-goal scorers (Morrison, Jan Mysak and Avery Heyes) on the opposition's roster. Heyes has 10 points (7G,3A) in the six games versus Kingston. Anaheim Ducks prospect Mason McTavish remains away with Canada's Olympic Team in Beijing.

Don't Get Down

Hamilton has not won a game when trailing after the opening period (0-5-0-0) with only one win in 10 games when down after forty minutes. Conversely, the Bulldogs have suffered just one regulation loss (13-1-2-0) when leading after the first period. The Frontenacs have shown an ability to come back when down early (6-7-0-0 after first / 5-8-0-0 after second). In the last game, the Black and Gold went down a pair of first-period goals to Hamilton before tallying four unanswered goals, leading to a game-winning strike by rookie Gage Heyes with under nine minutes left. It was the first career OHL goal for Heyes.

However, chances of success increase if not chasing games, with Kingston having only one regulation loss (13-1-2-0) when leading after the first and 17-2-3-0 after forty minutes.

Fronts Focused

Former Ottawa defender Alec Belanger was thrilled with the win on Friday over his old team but knows it's essential not to get too high or low in a long season. "It's a big game tomorrow (Saturday) in Hamilton," he said after Friday's game. "We enjoyed our win for 10 minutes in the room, went and had a cooldown, and now we're all thinking about tomorrow. I will be going to bed thinking about Hamilton, and I know a lot of guys are. We're excited; we had a good game tonight, but it's over now, and we are moving on to tomorrow."

Special Teams

Powerplays

KGN - 25.3% ( 2nd Eastern Conf /4th OHL)

HAM - 24.7% (4th Eastern Conf /6th OHL)

Penalty Kill

KGN - 77.0% (7th Eastern Conf /15th OHL)

HAM - 79.1% (4th Eastern Conf / 11th OHL)

Fronts Notes:

Lucas Edmonds is 1st OHL assists (52), 4th OHL points (75), T-1st OHL PP assists (21)

Edmonds extends to a seven-game point streak (4G,9A), longest assist streak in OHL (seven games)

Jordan Frasca extended to a seven-game point streak (8G,5A).

Shane Wright has points in three straight (3G,6A) and 11 of last 14 games (9G,14A).

Jordan Frasca (31) fourth-overall OHL - one of six players with 30+ goals - 13 PPG's 2nd most in OHL.

Francesco Arcuri played career game 100 versus OTT Friday night with 71 points (31G,40A)

Rookie forward Gage Heyes scored 1st career OHL goal versus Hamilton with the GWG on

Team Stat Pack - GP (42)

(27-12-3-0) 57 pts (2nd East Div / 4th Eastern Conf /7th OHL )

Leaders

Goals - Frasca (31), Edmonds (24), Arcuri (23)

Assists - Edmonds (52), Wright (35), Frasca (29)

Points - Edmonds (75), Frasca (60), Wright (55)

PIMs - Haché (52), Poole (42), Budnick (39)

Shots- Edmonds (187), Wright (141), Frasca (140)

Powerplay Points - Edmonds (26), Frasca, (20), Wright (19)

Rookie Points - Ludwinski (26), Soto (21), Thibodeau (8)

Defence Points - Peric (26), Murray (23), Bélanger (11)

Plus/Minus - Frasca (+28), Murray, Edmonds (+21)

On The Front

Kingston returns home on Monday, Feb 21, for Family Day. Join the Frontenacs as they host the Ottawa 67's at the Leon's Centre starting at 2:00 pm.

Tickets are available at ticketmaster.ca or the venue box office. The Capacity at Leon's Centre has increased to 50%, and the venue should be operating at 100% as of March 1, 2022.

Listen to all the action on 104.3 Fresh Radio with Frontenacs play-by-play voice Jim Gilchrist. Fans can also follow along with team social media channels at Twitter, Facebook and IG for updates. Watch the games on YourTV Kingston (channel 700) or CHL TV/OHL Live.


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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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