Powassan takes battle of league leaders against Rayside-Balfour

POWASSAN, Ont. – The top two teams in the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League standings took to the ice Friday at the Powassan Sportsplex where the hometown Voodoos prevailed with a 5-4 victory over the Rayside-Balfour Canadians.

Powassan came out flying grabbing a 3-0 lead before the contest was 10 minutes old, starting the outburst just 17 seconds in on a Rob McCollum marker.

Ryan Theriault then made it 2-0 a minute later as the Voodoos continued their strong start.

They then added another at 9:09 on Tomas Yachmenev’s 10th tally of the season.

Special teams helped Rayside-Balfour get one back late in the frame on a Ryan O’Bonsawin power play effort.

Another man advantage helped the visitors pull to within one at 3:46 of the second compliments of Matthew Neault.

However Powassan countered with goals from Harrison Israels at even strength and Quintin Loon-Stewardson via the power play to restore their cushion.

The Canadians drew closer at 10:43 of the frame when Justin Janowski struck shorthanded for the visitors to pull within two heading into the third.

Neault’s second of the evening with 8:48 remaining in regulation brought Rayside-Balfour ever closer as he converted on another man advantage.

However Powassan tightened up defensively from there to secure the win.

Graham Dynes started for the Voodoos and picked up the win with 37 stops on 40 shots while Christian Cicigoi allowed one on three attempts in 40 seconds of relief.

MacKenzie Savard suffered the loss for the Canadians seeing 39 pucks fired his way in defeat.