2nd period outburst leads Rayside-Balfour over Espanola

CHELMSFORD, Ont. – The Rayside-Balfour Canadians connected for five second period goals to send them to a 5-2 victory over the Espanola Express in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League contest Thursday at Chelmsford Arena.

Espanola did gain the upper hand with the lone tally of the opening frame as Joshua Zlatinszky scored on the power play at 12:13 with Connor Tessier and Makenzie MacMillan picking up assists on the play.

After Rayside-Balfour’s Evan Krassey tied it at 2:25 of the middle session Kyle Liinamaa converted on a man advantage at midway through the stanza as he found the back of the net for a fourth consecutive game.

The Canadians kept coming from there as they tacked on three more markers on efforts from affiliate Carson McMillan, with his first, while Krassey and Liinamaa both scored once again.

Logan Fennema did get one back for the Express with 24 seconds left in the period to make it 5-2 after two.

In the third, both clubs tightened up defensively as the final 20 minutes finished up scoreless.

Ethan Lavallee had two assists for Rayside-Balfour to give him 27 points on the year, which leads all NOJHL rookie defencemen.

Brayden Lachance made 25 saves to pick-up the win for the home side while Ryan Hale was busy in the Espanola net as he faced 49 shots in a losing cause.

Photo courtesy of Rob and Caleigh Fera:  www.sudburylight.ca