Photos – Allyson Demers
KIRKLAND LAKE, Ont. – Striking for a trio of shorthanded tallies, in rapid succession, early in the second period helped send the Kirkland Lake Gold Miners to 5-2 victory over the Cochrane Crunch Wednesday afternoon in a Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League exhibition match-up at the Joe Mavrinac Community Complex.
First period play saw the visiting Crunch open the scoring off a solid forecheck that resulted in Owen Canani jam in a rebound from the top of the crease off a goal-mouth scramble late in the session.
Moving to the middle stanza, Kirkland Lake drew level in the opening minutes as they broke out on a two-on-one while shorthanded as John-Paul Scaringi powered his way down the right wing and snapped a shot past Cochrane netminder Ben DiGiallonardo.
Still down a skater, the Gold Miners struck again after forcing a turnover in the Crunch zone as Eric de Repentigny finished off a quick give-and-go to put the hosts in front.
Not done there, Kirkland Lake tacked on their third shorthanded marker moments later, compliments of Ryan Evenhuis to go up 3-1.
Adding a fourth goal before the second intermission, Evenhuis connected at even strength with 4:44 left in the stanza.
The two clubs then traded tallies in the third to round out the scoring with Scaringi getting his second of the contest for the Miners before Mark Hill notched one for Cochrane to wrap things up.
Nicolas Alvarez started for Kirkland Lake and picked up the win while DiGiallonardo suffered the setback.
This now sets the stage for the NOJHL’s regular season, which gets underway Thursday evening as the newly-minted Greater Sudbury Cubs welcome the Espanola Express to the Gerry McCrory Countryside Sports Complex in a 7:30 p.m. start.