Photos: Northern Lights Photography
HEARST, Ont. – Powassan Voodoos rookie forward Reyth Smith scored three times to register his initial Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League hat trick Saturday as part of a 6-2 triumph over the Hearst Lumberjacks at the Claude Larose Recreation Centre.
It took Powassan only 24 seconds to strike first in the contest, off a rush up ice from Ryan Patrick, as he skated out of his own zone and into Hearst territory where he made a nice inside move on a defender and went to the net and ripped a shot past the blocker of goalkeeper Russ Decoste.
Another early effort put the Voodoos up by a pair in the middle stanza as a fanned pass behind the goal line led to Smith having nothing but time to pump one by Decoste from the top of the crease.
A partially blocked shot helped Powassan notch a third on the night after a Hearst clearing attempt was knocked right to Smith in the right circle where he quickly whipped it into the right corner for another tally, coming 12 minutes after his first one.
Chase Thompson then made it 4-0 as he batted a play out of mid-air right in front to extend the guests cushion.
Getting one back off a late power play, the Lumberjacks’ Liam Boswell went hard to the net from the right point, and after being initially stymied, lifted his next opportunity over the shoulder of the Voodoos’ Daniel Dirracolo at 19:24.
However, Powassan capitalized quickly in the final frame as well, with Mathieu MacMillan connecting at 2:14 as he powered his way down the left wing before driving past a Hearst defenceman and snapping in his fifth of the campaign.
Jack Nolan brought the hosts to within three with 11 minutes to play as he drove down the right side and whistled a short side attempt into the top shelf on a downed Dirracolo.
After the home side got their goalie out for an extra attacker to try and get back in it, the Voodoos broke up a play that allowed Smith to skate in alone on an empty net where he put his chance right in the middle of the net to finish off his three-tally night and the solid road victory for his club.
The win was the 10th of the season for Powassan, who moved to 10-4-0-1 overall, while in defeat the Lumberjacks fell to 6-8-1-1.
“Highlight of the Night” – NOJHL YouTube Channel