CHELMSFORD, Ont. – A four-point night for Noah Minns helped lead the way as the Blind River Beavers went on to top the Rayside-Balfour Canadians 7-5 Thursday evening in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up Thursday at Chelmsford Arena.
After combining for 14 goals in a meeting in Blind River Tuesday, the two teams brought their offensive firepower with them once again.
It was scoreless midway through the first frame, but they then opened up by striking five times in the back half of the session, including three goals by the Beavers.
Blind River began the outburst eight seconds into a power play as Devin Mauro buried a rebound to the left Rayside-Balfour starter David Bowen.
Answering that a couple minutes later, the Canadians equalized skating four-on-four as Mitchell Martin cruised down the left wing and let loose a laser that flew past Gavin Disano in the Blind River net.
Going to the man advantage right after that, the home team took the lead following some crisp passing that allowed Giordano Biondi to wire one in from the right circle at 13:31.
Countering, the guests equalized while up a skater themselves four minutes later as Mauro completed a superb three-way passing play as he was left with an open side to knot the affair at 2-2.
Justin Mauro then put Blind River back in front late in the first as Jacob Kelly rushed past a Canadians defender on a three-on-one then fed him in the slot where he whipped his chance into the top corner.
In the second stanza, Gavin Brown knotted the affair on the first shift as he wheeled out of his zone then wristed a shot over the glove of Disano to pick up his first goal of the season.
Back and forth they went with Samuel Davies firing an attempt through a screen that was redirected and credited to him, giving the Beavers the lead once more.
On the play, Lucas Adams ran a consecutive game point streak to six games in succession.
Matching that, Nicholas DeGrazia evened thing up again off a scrambled draw as his team-leading sixth from in close.
Adams then connected at 16:15 as the Beavers carried the slim edge into the final intermission.
In the third, a heads up play by Devin Mauro sent Kelly in alone on a breakaway where he made a quick deke right before sliding in the puck past the outstretched pad of Bowen with 9:20 to go.
Jake Marois entered the RBC net in the back half of the final frame in relief.
A fifth Canadians marker came with five minutes remaining as Brown bagged his second of the night.
However with their goaltender out for an extra attacker, Blind River secured the road victory with a long-range empty netter that was credited to Minns to wrap up the night’s scoring.
Disano finished with 29 stops to pick up the win.
Bowen meanwhile faced 28 attempts in defeat while Marois handled all seven chances he saw in relief.
The two teams will meet again Saturday in a 2 p.m. start at the Blind River Community Centre, which will also be streamed live on HockeyTV.com.