Niagara 2 Oshawa 1 - Niagara leads series 1-0
Niagara took game one against Oshawa in front of a sold out house at home at the Gatorade Garden City Complex last night.
Mark Visentin, who earlier this week signed an entry level contract with the NHL's Phoenix Coyotes, stopped 37 of 38 shots, none bigger than a third period breakaway on Oshawa's Christian Thomas to preserve the victory. Oshawa's Peter Di Salvo was equally as impressive stopping 33 of 35 shots for the Genereals.
None other than one of our favorites, Ryan Strome, scored at 14:49 of the first on a breakaway and made one of his highlight reel moves to beat Di Salvo. Freddie Hamilton and Jason Wilson picked up the assists on the play on Strome's second of the playoffs.
Another of our favorites, Nicklas Jensen, scored at the 10:09 to tie things up 1-1. It was Jensen's 5th of the playoffs with Lucas Lessio and Daniel Maggio drawing the assists.
Jason Wilson scored his second goal of the playoffs to give Niagara lead once again at 2-1. It was a power play marker set up by Darren Archibald and Steven Shipley.
That's how this one would end.
Game 2 goes Saturday night in Oshawa.
Owen Sound 4 Plymouth 3 OT - Owen Sound leads series 1-0
Is there a goaltending controversy in Owen Sound? Jordan Binnington, who carried the Attack for the bulk of the regular season was a healthy scratch again. And, well read on.
Michael Zador started for the Attack. Scott Wedgewood tended goal for the Whalers.
Jesse Blacker gave the Attack the 1-0 lead at 8:19 of period one. Joey Hishon assisted.
James Livingston evened it up less than 2 minutes later on the powerplay as he was the first to a loose puck in front of Zador and tie the game 1-1 at 10:00. Tyler Brown and Beau Schmitz drew the assists on Livingston's third of the playoffs.
The Whalers took advantage of another powerplay marker 2:36 into the second period when Beau Schmitz banged in the puck for his second of the playoffs. Robbie Czarnick and Brown assisted on the play.
Stefan Noesen made it 3-1 for Plymouth at 9:43 of the second. It was Noesen's fifth of the playoffs. Brown with his third assist of the night and Schmitz with his second to go along with his goal had the helpers.
A minute later, a nice passing play pulled the Attack within one. Daniel Sweep dished off to Robby Mignardi cross ice who then fired it to Liam Heelis cutting in the front of the Plymouth net and backhanded it passed Wedgewood at 10:44 for his third of the playoffs. That's the way the period would end.
So back to the original question: Is there a goaltending controversy or an injury?
Scott Stajcer started the third period for the Attack and Zador was not on the bench for the remainder of the period.
Garrett Wilson tied the game at 3 at 11:09 of the period. It was Wilson's 4th of the playoffs and was set up by Brenden Childerley.
ANd that's how regulation would end with Attack outshooting the Whalers 44-30.
It was beginning to look like this game would go to a 2nd overtime but at 14:45 we saw almost a replay of Blacker's first goal, this time from the other side of the rink and yes by Jesse Blacker himself who ended it with his second of the game set up by Wilson and Matt Stanisz.
Game 2 goes Saturday in Plymouth.