Voodoos rally past Express

ESPANOLA, Ont. – A four-goal third period helped the Powassan Voodoos rally past the Espanola Express 6-4 Sunday afternoon in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up at the Regional Recreation Complex.

Less than 24 hours after getting pummeled in a road loss at French River, Espanola came back with a purpose in this matinee, taking a 3-1 lead in this one after one period of play.

Yan Bessette got the Express on track 9:19 into the contest as he finished off a terrific three-way passing play with linemates Ty McHutchion and Benjamin Lacroix.

Countering with the equalizer three minutes later, Rodion Tatarenko drew the Voodoos level as he picked up his 18th of the season by snapping one short side on Espanola starter Matthew Loney.

Answering right back, Lacroix connected less than a minute later off a turnover as he buried a pass from Jack Thor that beat Powassan netminder Owen Wray.

A couple of minutes after that, Ryan Rubic notched his initial NOJHL goal after having a couple of whacks at the loose puck to the right of Wray.

Moving to the middle frame, the Voodoos picked up the lone marker of the session, thanks to Finn Acton-Rinaldo who drove to the net and lifted a nifty backhand over the shoulder of Loney at 11:12.

In the third, Alexander Bradshaw tied if for the visitors as he took a Jackson Buffam attempt on net, then took it wide, and slid in the equalizer at 4:12.

A minute and half later, Mike Levin picked up his first of two straight after taking a long pass up-ice then driving in on a partial break and snapping a shot over the glove of Loney.

After that, Levin then found himself alone on the slot and wristed another in the same area of the net to give him 17 tallies on the campaign, in what proved to be the game-winning goal.

Battling back, Eric Barnard tucked one in on Wray during an Espanola power play with 3:40 remaining in regulation.

Getting Loney out late for an extra attacker, the Express pressed for an equalizer to try and force overtime, however Powassan’s Jacob Dupont came out from behind the goal line and put one into the empty net just before time expired to wrap-up the come from behind triumph.

The victory for Wray was his fifth straight as the first-year goalkeeper raised his record to 11-1-0-1 on the year while Loney was credited with facing a season-high 44 shots against in defeat.