FRENCH RIVER – The Hearst Lumberjacks collected a team season-high eight goals Friday evening as they went on to defeat the French River Rapids 8-3 in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League play at Noelville Arena.
Hearst came out quickly, skating to a 2-0 lead before the contest was four minutes old on markers from Justin Miron at even strength at 1:16 and Spencer Silver via the power play at 3:35.
Another man advantage effort added to the Lumberjacks lead late in the frame when Jake Desando supplied his 19th of the campaign at 17:53.
The visitors came out strong in the middle session as well, getting their fourth of the night at 2:01 compliments of David Gobeil’s 11th marker of the season.
French River came back to cut into the deficit near the seven-minute mark of the stanza on a Delano Brown effort.
However, Max Griffioen came right back for the visitors a couple of shifts later as his 24th tally of 2019-20 and 175th career NOJHL point made it 5-1 Hearst with half a game to play.
A third extra-man goal added to the Hearst cushion at 12:10 with Matthew MacDougall also chipping in offensively.
Ty Chambers got one for French River late is the session as he collected his 15th goal on the year, but the visitors struck for a fourth time on the power play before the frame came to a close with Alex Cannon adding to the onslaught.
In the third, the Rapids’ Ryan Smith and the Lumberjacks’ Trystan Mughal, shorthanded, traded tallies to round out the night’s scoring.
Dominic Dumas, Carson Cox and Olivier Cloutier-Faucher dished out two assists each to aid the Hearst cause.
Liam Oxner made 30 saves to pick up the win in net for the Lumberjacks.
Sebastian Woods started for the Rapids while Ben Mongomery also saw time in relief, facing a combined 43 shots in defeat.
Game Photos courtesy of Dal Photography