Game Photos: Marc-André Longval
HEARST, Ont. – Getting the final four goals of game, all in the third period, the Hearst Lumberjacks went on to pull out a 9-5 victory over the Cochrane Crunch in a high-scoring Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League match-up Sunday at Claude Larose Recreation Centre.
Hearst got going offensively 4:21 into the contest as Zachary Demers put a pass over the Raphael Lajeunesse on the right wing where he proceeded to whistle one past Crunch starter Michael Nickolau.
However, Cochrane came right back on the next shift and netted the equalizer thanks to a Matteo Peca shorthanded effort on a one-on-three rush that saw his slip a shot that got through Liam Oxner in the Lumberjacks’ net.
Regaining the lead midway through the opening frame, Mathieu Comeau saw a Jaden Raad attempt from the point bounce off the end glass and right to him parked in front as he quickly buried his 14th tally of the campaign.
Answering again though, Cochrane clicked on the power play with an Ethan Ingram feed in front clipping off the skate of Collin Lapointe and bouncing in.
The Crunch then went in front right after that as Alex Dionne banged one in from the top of the crease.
Acton in the back-and-forth first saw Hearst draw level prior to the intermission thanks to another by Comeau, which came while up a skater as he knocked one in following a pad save by Nickolau on Demers.
Continuing to trade tallies, the clubs combined for three more in quick order, starting with Sebastien Ouimet sweeping in a Jake Alton pass to put the visitors up 4-3.
Answering, Hearst came back with goals from Riley Klugerman and Demers to retake the lead.
Klugerman’s effort saw him neatly tip a Dylan Ford wrister from the left point while Demers was sent in on a breakaway by Mason Bazaluk and neatly tucked the puck between the Cochrane goalkeeper’s legs with half a game still to play.
The tallies kept coming in the third period, with four being provided before the session was five minutes in.
A redirected-knuckling puck clipped off a Hearst player and fluttered into the Lumberjacks net with Liam Boswell getting credit at 1:48.
From there though, the hosts put the game away, converting four times as Raad, Cody Walker, Bazaluk and Comeau added to their offensive totals.
Hearst defenceman Raad finished off with four points in the triumph.
Shot favoured the Lumberjacks, 49-19, with Oxner getting the win while Nickolau suffered the loss.
VIDEO “Highlight of the Night” – NOJHL YouTube Channel