NOJHL NETWORK MEDIA UPDATE
Release Date: Friday, March 18, 2016
Gold Miners take 3OT thriller over Voodoos in East semifinal series opener
POWASSAN, Ont. – Brayden Stortz scored his second goal of the game 52 seconds into the third overtime, while on the power play, as the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners edged the Powassan Voodoos 2-1 in a thrilling Game 1 of their Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League East Division semifinal Friday at the Powassan Sportsplex.
Game 2 goes Saturday back in Powassan at 7 p.m.
Both sides played it close to the vest in the opening stanza, which was scoreless, thanks to starting netminders Joe Marcoullier of Kirkland Lake and Powassan’s Garrett Forrest.
The scoring chances in the second stanza were more plentiful, but once again the respective goalkeepers stood tall to keep the game at 0-0 through 40 minutes.
Kirkland Lake did get the night’s opening tally early in the third as the NOJHL’s leading point producer in Stortz took advantage of a dump-in Forrest could not corral behind his own goal and stuffed the puck into the open side just 12 seconds into the session.
A late two-man advantage and with Forrest pulled in favour of an extra attacker allowed the Voodoos to force OT as Powassan captain Jake Staples notched the equalizer from in close with 54 seconds remaining in regulation as he knocked in the tying tally off a cross-crease pass by Nicky Grose.
The first extra session continued to be fast-paced with a number of excellent chances for both sides to end it only to be stymied by the goaltenders.
It much of the same in the second OT as both netminders continued to keep opposing shooters at bay and kept the score deadlocked at 1-1.
Kirkland Lake would eventually prevail early in triple OT as Stortz wired the winner through a crowd from the left face-off circle during a man advantage opportunity to end the marathon affair, which was extremely well played by both sides.
Final shots on goal finished up 60-52 in the Gold Miners favour with Marcoullier picking up the win and Forrest the hard luck loss in which both stoppers were outstanding.
NOJHL Playoff Series D
East Division semifinal
No. 2 Powassan Voodoos vs. No. 3 Kirkland Lake Gold Miners
Kirkland Lake leads best-of-seven series 1-0
Game 1: Kirkland Lake 2 Powassan 1 (3OT)
Game 2: Saturday, March 19 @ Powassan 7 p.m. (Sportsplex)
Game 3: Wednesday, March 23 @ Kirkland Lake 7:30 p.m. (Joe Mavrinac)
Game 4: Thursday, March 24 @ Kirkland Lake 7:30 p.m. (Joe Mavrinac)
Game 5*: Saturday, March 26 @ Powassan 7 p.m. (Sportsplex)
Game 6*: Tuesday, March 29 @ Kirkland Lake 7:30 p.m. (Joe Mavrinac)
Game 7*: Wednesday, March 30 @ Powassan 7 p.m. (Sportsplex)