GALLERY: Turner sends Powassan past Hearst in OT

Photos: Northern Lights Photography

HEARST, Ont. – A Zach Turner tally, 3:52 into overtime, was the difference as the Powassan Voodoos pulled out a 5-4 win over the Hearst Lumberjacks Thursday night in Game 1 of their Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League East semifinal at Claude Larose Recreation Centre.

Forcing the play off a draw in the Powassan zone, Hearst’s capitalized first, nearly four minutes in, when Mathieu Comeau snagged a loose puck behind the goal line and stuffed it between the pad and post on Voodoos’ netminder Daniel Dirracolo.

Collecting an equalizer from a sharp angle along the side boards, the visitors’ Mathieu MacMillan sent a low attempt towards the target that got under Lumberjacks’ starter Tristan Boileau and trickled in at 18:42.

Coming out quickly in the middle stanza, the Voodoos went in front as Reyth Smith roofed one high short side over the blocker of Boileau.

The back half of the session provided three more markers in the back and forth affair to send the teams to the intermission knotted at 3-3 after 40 minutes.

Justin Carriere tied it for Hearst by sending in a back hand off an Aiden Kalin pass.

The Lumberjacks converted once more to retake the lead courtesy of Cooper Moore, who came in on transition down the left side, then saw a bounding puck clip off his skate and find its way in.

Powassan answered after that, with Justin Rousseau working his way free between the circles, then taking a Tucker Shields pass from the end boards and wiring in his first of the playoffs.

Moving to the third, the Voodoos went ahead midway through the frame thanks to Dylan McElhinny slamming in a blocked point attempt from Alexander Case.

Comeau came back to force OT by striking with 4:39 remaining in regulation, with his second of the evening, that saw him bang in a rebound off a Max Gorzelnik shot into an open corner, during a man advantage opportunity.

In extra time, Powassan got the game-winner off some sustained pressure that allowed a clearing attempt to be picked off and resulted in Turner snapping in the decider from the right of the net.

The two teams meet again Friday, back in Hearst, at 7:30 p.m. and on

NOJHL East Division semifinal
Hearst Lumberjacks vs. Powassan Voodoos
Powassan leads best-of-seven series 1-0

Game 1: Voodoos 5 Lumberjacks 4 (OT)
Game 2: Friday, March 22 @ Hearst 7:30 p.m. (Claude Larose Recreation Centre)
Game 3: Tuesday, March 26 @ Powassan 7 p.m. (Powassan Sportsplex)
Game 4: Wednesday, March 27 @ Powassan 7 p.m. (Powassan Sportsplex)
Game 5*: Friday, March 29 @ Hearst 7:30 p.m. (Claude Larose Recreation Centre)
Game 6*: Sunday, March 31 @ Powassan 7 p.m. (Powassan Sportsplex)
Game 7*: Tuesday, April 2 @ Hearst 7:30 p.m. (Claude Larose Recreation Centre)
*-if necessary