NORTH STARS BEAT DEFENDING CHAMPS, TAKE OVER FIRST PLACE
SAULT STE. MARIE, Ont. – Brian Kment made 47 saves and got a little help from his posts as the Sault Ste. Marie North Stars took over sole possession of first place at the 2013 TELUS Cup with a 4-3 win over the Red Deer Chiefs on Tuesday night.
The North Stars are the fifth host team in the last 10 years to win their first two games at the National Midget Championship, while the Chiefs had an eight-game undefeated streak at the tournament snapped.
Jaren Bellini, Matt Pinder and Devin Shell all scored once and added an assist for Sault Ste. Marie (2-0), which has won back-to-back games after losing 16 in a row at the national championship.
Jaron Rowe had the other goal in the win.
Ryker Leer, Dustin Gorgi and Chris Gerrie scored for Red Deer (1-1), which had not lost at the TELUS Cup since its preliminary round finale in 2010; the Chiefs went unbeaten last year on their way to the national title.
With a crowd of more than 3,000 at the Essar Centre solidly behind the North Stars, Bellini got the scoring started just 5:42 in before Rowe tipped in a Ryan Cooke point shot 44 seconds later.
Leer buried a rebound to get the Chiefs on the board 4:20 into the second period, but Pinder restored the two-goal advantage on a shorthanded breakaway 10 minutes later, outwaiting Matt Zentner before flipping a backhand over the sprawling Red Deer goaltender.
Shell made it a three-goal lead near the midway point of the third period, going short-side shelf over Zentner’s shoulder, seemingly putting the game out of reach.
But Gorgi scored just 1:24 after Shell’s goal and Gerrie cut the lead to one 1:28 after that, setting up a wild final eight minutes.
Red Deer’s best chances to tie the game came on the same offensive rush with two minutes to go, with back-to-back shots in the span of four seconds beating Kment but not the iron – the first off the post and the rebound off the crossbar.
Zentner had a strong game despite the loss, finishing with 31 saves. Red Deer outshot Sault Ste. Marie 50-35.
The North Stars will try to make it three in a row against the Ottawa Jr. 67’s on Wednesday night (7:30 p.m. ET), while the Chiefs take on the Saskatoon Contacts in a rematch of last year’s semifinal (4 p.m. ET).
|Game Information/Renseignements sur le match|
|Game #/No. de match||6||Round/Ronde||Preliminary|
||Location/Lieu||Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.
|Date||April 23, 2013
||Time/Heure||7:30 p.m. ET
|Goals & Penalties/Buts et pénalités|
|First Period/Première période
05:42 HST Jaren Bellini (Devin Shell, Jack MacLeod)
06:26 HST Jaron Rowe (Ryan Cooke)
00:43 PAC Jody Sick (Cross-checking/Double-échec)
13:19 HST Ryan Cooke (Roughing/Rudesse)
13:41 PAC Kaleb Denham (Slashing/Coup de bâton)
14:23 PAC Jordan Steenbergen (Cross-checking/Double-échec)
|Second Period/Deuxième période
04:20 PAC Ryker Leer (Jacob Schofield, Colton Bobyk) PP/AN
14:30 HST Matt Pinder SH/DN
04:13 HST Matt Pinder (Elbowing/Donner du coude)
06:07 PAC Chase Thudium (Tripping/Faire trébucher)
06:15 PAC Jordan Steenbergen (Holding/Retenir)
08:45 HST Brandon Grandinetti (Roughing/Rudesse)
13:07 HST Matthew Mitchell (Slashing/Coup de bâton)
15:34 PAC Gabe Bast (Hooking/Accrocher)
|Third Period/Troisième période
09:04 HST Devin Shell (Matt Pinder, Jaren Bellini)
10:28 PAC Dustin Gorgi (Ian McLellan, Rory Davidson)
11:56 PAC Chris Gerrie (Chase Thudium)
|Goaltenders/Gardiens de but|
|Shots on Goal/Tirs au but||1||2||3||Total|
|Players of the Game/Joueurs du match|