Troops’ rally downs ‘Hounds
NORTH BAY, Ont. — Jacob Therrien scored two goals and goaltender Mike McIvor made 27 saves as the North Bay Battalion rallied in the third period to defeat the Soo Greyhounds 5-3 in an Ontario Hockey League game Thursday night.
Owen Van Steensel had an empty-net goal and three assists, Brice Cooke supplied one goal and one assist and Ty Nelson also scored for North Bay, which moved its won-lost-extended record to 8-5-4 for 20 points, tying the Mississauga Steelheads and Sudbury Wolves for first place in the Central Division.
For rookie McIvor, it was his first OHL win and gave him a record of 1-1-0 after two losses in as many appearances last season.
Jack Beck, Brenden Sirizzotti and Owen Allard scored for Soo before a crowd of 2,541 on Military Appreciation Night presented by Honorary Colonels of 22 Wing. Goaltender Charlie Schenkel made 33 saves for the Greyhounds, who saw a four-game winning streak ended and are 11-6-0 for 22 points atop the West Division.
“Obviously, I’m really happy with a big performance by McIvor in net,” said Battalion coach Ryan Oulahen. “He gets his first win against a really good hockey team, so hopefully we can carry this momentum a little bit through the weekend.”
Soo, which trailed 2-1 after 40 minutes, tied it on Sirizzotti’s sixth goal of the season at 2:25 of the third period and took a 3-2 lead at 9:07 when Allard put the puck high into the net from a scramble for his fifth goal.
Therrien poked the puck behind Schenkel from the left lip of the crease at 11:24 for an unassisted seventh goal before Cooke went off for tripping at 14:00.
Cooke emerged from the penalty box, received the puck from Van Steensel and powered down the right wing around Caeden Carlisle to slip the winning goal past Schenkel at 16:12. It was Cooke’s third tally.
With Schenkel gone for a sixth skater, Van Steensel put his ninth goal into the empty net at 19:39 on assists by Justin Ertel and Paul Christopoulos.
Therrien was credited with his sixth goal at 10:04 of the second period. Van Steensel went around Andrew Gibson and put the puck toward the goalmouth, where it glanced off Therrien’s left skate into the net. Liam Arnsby drew the other assist as the goal survived video review.
The teams traded early first-period goals, as Nelson struck at 1:17 to score in a fourth straight game, assisted by Cooke and Van Steensel. In 149 career games, Nelson has 40 goals and 101 assists for 141 points, 25th on the franchise list, one ahead Nick Paul.
Nelson, the No. 1 pick in the 2020 OHL Priority Selection from the Toronto Jr. Canadiens minor midgets, has goals and points totals that are franchise records for a defenceman. He is tied with Michael Vernace for second all-time in assists, one behind Dylan Blujus at 102.
Beck replied from the left circle at 3:09. Bryce McConnell-Barker and Jordan D’Intino assisted on Beck’s sixth goal.
The Battalion visits the Barrie Colts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. The game can be seen live in North Bay on YourTV Channels 12 and 700.
BATTALION BULLETS: Taking part in the ceremonial faceoff were honorary colonels Jake Lacourse, Peter Chirico and Corina Moore, chief warrant officer Rick Martin and Col. Richard Jolette, with retired sergeant Dennis Moore, 93. Members of the Canadian Armed Forces and United States Air Force, with members of the Algonquin Regiment and 33 Service Battalion, were in attendance. The Military Wives Choir sang the national anthems … Lines included Arnsby centring left winger Van Steensel and right winger Cooke, Dalyn Wakely pivoting left winger Ertel and right winger Anthony Romani and Ethan Procyszyn centring left winger Ihnat Pazii and right winger Therrien. Dylan Richter centred left winger Carter Kostuch and right winger Lirim Amidovski … Defence pairs had Alex Cajkovic with Nelson, Tnias Mathurin with Christopoulos and Brayden Turley with Wyatt Kennedy … The Battalion was without Tyson Rismond, Nolan Laird, Zach Wilson, Pasquale Zito, Stef Forgione and Dom DiVincentiis … Christopoulos played his 200th game since being a second-round pick in the 2019 Priority Selection. He has career totals of nine goals and 46 assists for 55 points with 121 penalty minutes … North Bay went 0-for-1 on the power play. Soo was 0-for-4 … Among Soo’s missing were Brady Martin of Canada Red and head coach John Dean, coach of Canada White at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge. They met in a quarterfinal Thursday night at Charlottetown with White winning 3-2 in overtime.