Photos: Cathy Sullivan
POWASSAN, Ont. – Niklas Albrecht had an impressive performance by notching his initial Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League hat trick, which included the game-winning goal, leading the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners to their first win of the season, a 4-2 decision over the Powassan Voodoos Friday at the Powassan Sportsplex.
The Voodoos needed just four and a half minutes to open the scoring as Rodion Tatarenko picked off a clearing attempt and skated in before ripping one over the glove of Glen Crandall in the Kirkland Lake net.
Drawing level in the early moments of the second stanza, the Gold Miners’ Luciano Supino supplied the equalizer off an odd-man rush as he corralled the rebound from a Matthew Hill shot and zipped one, blocker side, on Voodoos starter Alex Bugeja.
Kirkland Lake kept coming and tacked on two more later in the session, courtesy of Albrecht to take a 3-1 lead.
His initial marker came via the power play as he powered his way down the left side before driving hard to the net and roofing one on Bugeja.
He then struck again moments later as a shot block came right to him in the slot where he made a quick deke and snapped in a shot to put the guests up by a pair.
A late man advantage helped the hosts move back to within one as Caleb Van de Ven clicked at 19:35 off a nice face-off win by teammate Jackson Buffam by wiring one from the left point that eluded Crandall.
In the late going, the Voodoos pulled Bugeja in favour of an extra attacker, but Albrecht capped off his big night by scoring into an empty net after firing one off the post and in after getting past the centre red line.
Crandall finished with 28 stops to earn the win while Bugeja faced 19 attempts in defeat.