Photos: Northern Lights Photography
HEARST, Ont. – The Hearst Lumberjacks broke open a third period tie with two unanswered goals to pull out a 5-3 victory Saturday over a persistent Kirkland Lake Gold Miners side in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League action at Claude Larose Recreation Centre.
One night removed from a defeat of the same Gold Miners Friday, Hearst got off to a good start in this one as well.
After thwarting a Kirkland Lake two-on-one early, the Lumberjacks came right back with an odd-man rush of their own and saw Andrew Morton feed Jett Mintenko going to the net where he steered it in on goalkeeper Braydon Garnhart at 3:13.
Answering back, the visitors drew level a minute and a half later with Chance DeBolt snapping a shot from close range past a screened Matteo Gennaro in the Hearst net.
The home side regained the lead midway through the first period as Mintenko knocked a play down and skated to the slot where he beat Garnhart with a well-placed wrist shot.
Coming off a four-point night Friday, Mathieu Comeau kept it going offensively 4:22 into the middle stanza as he cranked a one-timer from the top of the left circle off a Riley Klugerman set-up that flew into the top corner of the net.
Battling back, the Gold Miners struck twice before the second intermission to knot the affair at 3-3 after 40 minutes.
Benjamin Armatage got his club’s second of the night as he quickly buried a feed from behind the net by Lucino Supino at 14:49.
They then drew level at the 17-minute mark as Ian McDonald jammed one in on a sprawled Gennaro, with help from Supino and DeBolt.
Regrouping in the third, Hearst scored twice before the period was half complete to pull out the two-game weekend sweep.
Mason Bazaluk bagged the game-winner at 5:20 as he roofed a shot over the blocker of Garnhart from the right faceoff circle.
They then saw Cody Walker provide some insurance a couple of shirts later as he tucked in a wraparound off a goal-mouth scramble.
Walker did have a chance for another with a late penalty shot, but the puck rolled off his stick and went wide to foil his attempt.
With the outcome, the Lumberjacks won for a 15th time this season and third in succession.