Gens Hold off Fronts, 3-2
The Generals played in a mid-week game tonight at the Tribute Communities Centre as they took on the Kingston Frontenacs. After going 2-1-0-0 last weekend in the three-game stretch, the Gens came into the game with a 41-20-4-0 record on the season. With only two games after tonight's contest remaining until playoffs, the Gens aimed for a victory to head into their final weekend of the regular season with momentum.
Tonight's contest included a pre-game ceremony to thank all the billet families who bring the Generals players into their home for the year. Thank you to all the billets for providing each player the ability to play in Oshawa! Tonight's game also marked former Generals forward Nick Wong's first game back in Oshawa and included a video tribute to thank him for his time as a Gen!
The Gens opened the game with a few shifts stuck in their own end forcing Oshawa goaltender Kyle Keyser to make a few big stops early. However, after the Fronts continued the pressure, they were able to break through Oshawa's defense and pot the game's first goal off a scramble in front of the net to put them up 1-0. After the goal, the Gens picked up the pace and were rewarded with a goal of their own just minutes after Kingston's off a rebound in the air that Allan McShane knocked in to tie up the game. Moments later, Oshawa nearly took the lead after Serron Noel ripped a shot off the post that barely stayed out of the net. With just under seven minutes left in the period, the Gens tallied their second goal of the game to take the lead after Nico Gross fired a shot from blue line that created a rebound for captain Kyle MacLean that he buried for the 2-1 mark. After the goal, the Fronts got called for a holding call to give the Gens the game's first powerplay. While they got a good cycle going on the opportunity, Oshawa wasn't able to add to their lead on the man advantage, sending them into the first intermission up 2-1 over Kingston.
Oshawa came out for the second ready to play, generating lots of shots and offensive zone time early in the period. Nearing the halfway mark of the second, the Gens were called for their first penalty of the contest for tripping, giving the Fronts powerplay an opportunity. With a strong defensive effort, the Gens were able to kill off the penalty and hold onto their lead. As the penalty expired, Gens defenseman Nico Gross sprung Anthony Salinitri on a breakaway as he left the box and the forward made no mistake on the chance by deking the Fronts goalie and sliding the puck home to give Oshawa a 3-1 lead. With four minutes left in the period, the Gens took an unsportsmanlike penalty to put them back on the kill. With an amazing PK effort, Oshawa was able to spend the majority of the kill in the Fronts end and prevent them from setting anything up in the Generals zone. With the strong defensive effort, the Gens headed into the game's final frame with their 3-1 lead.
Entering the period outshooting the Fronts 28-13, the Gens continued to put pucks on net and got several good chances in the third's opening half. After the midway mark, the Gens continued to pour on the pressure and nearly converted on a goal with Salinitri ringing a backhand shot off the crossbar. After the chance, the Fronts took the play down into Oshawa's end and were able to pot their second goal of the game from former Gen Nick Wong hitting in a loose puck in the crease to reduce Oshawa's lead to 3-2. With just over a minute left in the game, Kingston pulled their goaltender to get the extra man on the ice and look for the tying goal, but the Gens were able to hold off the Fronts push and come away with a 3-2 victory over the divisional foes.
After tonight's win on home ice, the team will look to build off the performance when they play the Frontenacs again in Kingston on Friday before concluding the regular season with a game at home against the Sudbury Wolves on Sunday.
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