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Gold Miners edge Crunch in shootout

COCHRANE, Ont. – Gregory Trudeau-Paquet scored once in regulation and also notched the lone goal in the shootout as the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners skated to a 4-3 decision over the Cochrane Crunch in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League play Wednesday evening at Tim Horton Events Centre.

Recently acquired Nicholas Blachman, who was making his home debut for the Crunch, picked up his first NOJHL tally 8:03 into the contest to put Cochrane in front, only to see Hunter Foreshew counter with the equalizer for Kirkland Lake just 47 seconds later.

Aiden Wagner then put the visitors in front 2-1 at 13:16 of the first period as the visitors carried a lead into the intermission.

Moving on to the second stanza, Trudeau-Paquet put the guests up by two as he collected his 22nd tally of the campaign at 4:16.

Battling back, the Crunch converted on a man advantage opportunity three minutes later courtesy of Zach Hayes as his 10th brought the hosts back to within one.

They then tied things up before the frame was complete as Blachman and Justin Bofshever combined to set-up Caleb Dolman for his ninth at 13:01.

From there the two teams tightened up defensively and the goaltenders shut the door as the rest of regulation and the five-minute overtime were scoreless sending the contest to extra shots to determine a winner.

There, Trudeau-Paquet was the only one, among six, to connect in the shootout to help give Kirkland Lake the win.

Gold Miners netminder Dawson Rodin made 26 saves and handled all three attempts he saw in the shootout to earn the victory for the Gold Miners while Cochrane goaltender Zach Wickson made 42 stops in a solid effort helping his side secure a point in the standings.

With the result, both clubs are now tied for first in the NOJHL East standings with 51 points, with Kirkland Lake holding five games in hand on the Crunch however.