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 Soo Greyhounds

Hounds Drop Game Three, Now Trail Otters 2 Games to 1

April 27, 2015 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL)
Soo Greyhounds News Release


ERIE, PA- Despite holding the Erie Otters to a just two shots through twenty minutes of play on Sunday Night, the Soo Greyhounds found themselves having to battle back.

It was the tone they would face all night long despite outplaying their opposition as the series shifted to Pennsylvania and would result in rare back-to-back losses for the Hounds.

"It's tough but it's hockey, its sports, its playoffs. You have to deal with it and you have to go back and look at what you did well and what you can do better because obviously it wasn't quite good enough to get it done tonight" began Hounds Head Coach Sheldon Keefe when asked about the outcome, despite the type of game the Hounds played.

"But we've got another game on Tuesday, an opportunity to even things up and come home with the final 2 of 3 in our building" he added.

The Greyhounds came out strong from the opening face-off only to see Nick Betz redirect a shot at the 5:55 mark of the first period giving Erie their first lead of the series.

NICK RITCHIE was given a feed from JUSTIN BAILEY with ten minutes to go in the period, but found the cross bar in behind Devin Williams, holding the Hounds off the scoreboard.

Then at 10:51, Connor McDavid finished off a shorthanded breakaway for his 6th goal of the series and a 2-0 Erie lead.

"The first two shots I don't think any goalie in the world, in any league, can make those saves.

And we can do a better job limiting those. I'd feel a lot better if they had zero shots, we shouldn't have allowed those ones either" said Keefe, when explaining the deficit had nothing to do with goaltending.

TYLER GANLY would score his first goal of the series, on the Hounds eighth shot of the game, as his right point show went low and past Williams cutting the Erie lead to 2-1.

The Hounds outshot Erie 11-2 through the first period.

Just 1:01 into the second period Connor McDavid would strike again skating the puck off the boards to BRANDON HALVERSON's left, before finding an opening on a play that appeared would be destined for a pass to the slot, to increase Erie's lead to 3-1.

From their the Hounds net minder was solid and earned praise of Head Coach Sheldon Keefe as he turned aside all eighteen of shots he faced the rest of the way including a big stop just 2:50 into the second period on a play between Remi Ellie and Alex DeBrincat.

"I thought he was really good after that. We're pressing hard in the third so we opened up and gave them a lot of looks and he was outstanding and gave us a chance till the end" said Keefe of his goaltender and how he finished after the trying start.

NICK RITCHIE would again pull the Hounds within a single goal with just over five minutes to go on the period as three Hounds skated deep, and while holding the puck, Ritchie was patient before moving in close and notching his 13th goal of the playoffs to make it a 3-2 game.

Then in the third period, Captain DARNELL NURSE stepped over the line and wired a shot that hit the post, emphasizing the Hounds chances that were foiled in one way or another.

Both goalies would shine on a sequence of plays that saw Williams stone a set-up feed to TYLER GANLY with 12:40 to go in the third, before HALVERSON turned aside DeBrincat who was finishing off a 3-on-1 minutes later.

As the period pressed on and with five minutes to play the Hounds were pressing in the Erie zone but were unable to find the game-tying goal.

At the other end HALVERSON again stood tall denying Dylan Strome on a 2-on-1 keeping the Hounds within striking distance.

The Hounds would call a time-out with 2:24 to go and subsequently pull HALVERSON for the extra attacker.

With 1:39 left in regulation Nicholas Baptiste would send the puck the length of the ice and into the empty cage re-enforcing Erie's lead in what would be a 4-2 final.

"We did a lot of good things today. A lot of things we're happy about that we didn't do in Game 1 or 2. It was our best game of the series but things didn't go our way, we couldn't outscore them today" said Keefe.

"We have another opportunity on Tuesday and we'll look to see things keep getting better" he concluded.

The victory gave the Otters a 2-games-to-1 advantage in the best-of-seven, Western Conference Championship series.

ATTENDANCE- 6,287

RED STAR THREE STARS OF THE GAME

1- ER, Devin Williams

2- ER, Connor McDavid

3- SSM, Darnell Nurse

To view the complete game sheet CLICK HERE.

UP NEXT;

Both teams will now have an "off-day" on Monday before returning to action in Game 4 of the series on Tuesday, April 28th.

Game time is 7:00 p.m.

Fans can hear all the action on your Official Voice of the Hounds, Rock 101 (101.3 FM, www.rock101.net) beginning at 6:45 p.m. -OR- tune in live on Sportsnet at 7 p.m.

Full Series Schedule is as follows:

GM 1W 6-3

GM 2L 5-2

GM 3L 4-2 (Erie leads best-of-seven series 2-1)

GM 4Tuesday, April 28, 7 p.m.

GM 5Thursday, April 30, 7:07 p.m.

GM 6*Saturday, May 2, 7 p.m.

GM 7*Monday, May 4, 7:07 p.m.

* denotes "if necessary"


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