Steelheads Put Nine Past the Knights in Family Day Win
The Steelheads put nine goals on the board to complete a sweep of the OHL's Western and Eastern conference leaders in the past two weeks. Seven players recorded multi-point games, including Aidan Prueter who scored twice and Jacob Ingham stopped 39 of 43 shots to earn the Steelheads the two points.
Monday's first period had an ominous start for the Steelheads thanks to back-to-back goals by Kevin Hancock. The first on the power play and the second on a perfectly placed shot on the rush would have the Trout down by two early. The Steelheads would regroup and fight their way back into the game. Alan Lyszczarczyk picked up where he left off against North Bay, scoring his 33rd of the year to cut the Knights lead in half. The Steelheads would manage to completely flip the momentum of the game prior to the expiration of the first period as Cole Carter's between the legs pass found a streaking Cole Schwindt to even the score at two with only 54 seconds on the clock. After the two early goals, Jacob Ingham settled stopping nine shots in first and would go on to stop 39 of 43 in the game.
In the second period, the Steelheads offence came alive once again. Approximately five minutes had gone by when the Steelheads forecheck forced a turnover in the Knights zone, the puck would end up in front of the net on the stick of Cole Carter, the captain made no mistake potting his 33rd of the year to give the Steelheads their first lead of the game. A minute and twenty seconds later Aidan Prueter would score his third goal as a Steelhead to double the advantage. The Knights would respond through Connor McMichael's 33rd of the year on a nice 2-on-1 play to cut the lead in half. It was Prueter again who would restore the Steelheads two-goal advantage scoring his second of the game against the team whose colours the London, ON native wore as a minor hockey player. After the game, Prueter said of his two goals against the Knights, "Anytime you're playing you wanna win but it's extra special when you're playing your hometown."
A London answer to Prueter's insurance marker came just two minutes later when Columbus first-rounder Liam Foudy scored his 31st of the season. The Steelheads had one more goal up their sleeve for the end of the second, Nick Isaacson's inch-perfect shot beat Jordan Kooy who had replaced Joseph Raaymakers in the Knight's goal six minutes into the second period. The Trout would head to the locker room with their two-goal lead intact.
The final period was a testament to the Steelheads tight penalty killing. Four Steelheads made a trip to the box in the third and the Knights would pull their goalie early to have a prolonged 6-on-3 opportunity. The Steelheads PK wouldn't falter, blocked shots and multiple saves by Jacob Ingham including one full split across the crease ensured the Steelheads would keep the Knights scoreless in the final frame. Nick McHugh was the first benefactor of the empty net, chasing down a loose puck, the former Kitchener Ranger scored his third as a Steelhead to put the Trout up 7-4. Keean Washkurak would follow suit just a minute and 56 seconds later to put goal number eight on the board. Then, with only 27 seconds remaining and the game well and truly out of reach, Duncan Penman joined the party with his first goal as a Steelhead with only 27 seconds remaining. A rocket into the top corner that sent the building into euphoria.
Head Coach James Richmond talked about what has made his team successful against three of the top four teams in the OHL in Ottawa, London and Niagara. "We're playing together, we're sticking to a game plan and you hear it all the time but we're playing for each other, we're playing hard, we're playing fast and we have numbers back all day long."
Some notes from the game; Thomas Harley recorded his 55th assist as a Steelhead, the helper means that he has surpassed Sean Day for the third spot on the Steelheads all-time assists by a defenceman list. Aidan Prueter's two-goal performance was the first multi-goal game in his OHL career. James Hardie's assist on Prueter's first goal of the game extends his point streak to four games the longest of his OHL career. Cole Carter recorded the 99th assist of his OHL career on Schwindt's tying goal putting him just one away from the century mark and Alan Lyszczarczyk extended his goal-scoring streak to four games with his 33rd of the season.
The Steelheads will return to action Friday night for a road game in Oshawa against the Generals, puck drop is 7:35 PM.
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Ontario Hockey League Stories from February 18, 2019
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