Photos: Northern Exposures
ELLIOT LAKE, Ont. – A quick start combined with a strong finish were the right ingredients for the Hearst Lumberjacks to take down the Elliot Lake Red Wings 6-1 Saturday in Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League play at Centennial Arena.
Beginning rapidly, Hearst struck for a trio of tallies in a six-and-a-half-minute span to gain the early edge.
William Neeld got the first one as his seeing-eye wrister from the point sailed through a crowd following some solid corner work by his teammates.
The Lumberjacks’ Raphael Lajeunesse then potted his 16th a few shifts later after the was set-up from behind the goal-line off a nice feed from Robbie Rutledge.
Up a skater, Mason Bazaluk made it 3-0 for the visitors at 12:08 as he was left open long enough for a tap in.
Getting one back on the next shift, Elliot Lake’s Giovani Moses had a number of quality chances from close range before eventually stuffing in his 10 goal of the season, in beating Hearst netminder Matteo Gennaro.
A fourth marker from the guests came in the middle session that saw Tyren Grimsdale complete a rush into Elliot Lake territory.
Boasting the NOJHL’s top power play percentage, the Lumberjacks collected another via the man advantage, late in the frame, with Dylan Ford sending one from the point that eluded Colton Donaldson in the Elliot Lake net.
In the third, the league’s leading goal-getter, Rutledge, capped off the road triumph with his 27th, by putting a rebound off a Jaxson Holmes blast from the point to wrap things up.