Mangiapane spurs Colts to 2-1 decision
NORTH BAY, Ont. – Andrew Mangiapane scored the lone shootout goal to lift the Barrie Colts to a 2-1 victory Thursday night over the North Bay Battalion in a battle between the Ontario Hockey League’s Central Division leaders.
Mangiapane tied the game with a goal midway in the third period and goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood faced 36 shots through overtime for Barrie, which has a won-lost-extended record of 25-13-2 for 52 points atop the division. The Colts are 14-2-0 in their last 16 games.
Brett McKenzie scored for North Bay, 20-10-8 for 48 points, second in the division with two games in hand. Goaltender Jake Smith made 28 saves through overtime before a crowd of 3,871 as the Battalion honoured Nick Paul, who won a gold medal with Canada at the World Junior Championship.
The Troops are 2-1-2 against Barrie, which hosts the finale of the six-game season series on Feb. 26.
“It was a hardfought game,” said Battalion coach Stan Butler. “Both teams really played hard. You have to capitalize on your chances, and any way you look at it we didn’t do that. We had opportunities, but opportunities are no good unless you take advantage of them. Jake played a really strong game. Both goalies played well.
“We have to hit the net with our shots. We missed the net a lot. Just because we’ve added some players doesn’t mean we should change the style that we play. We’re trying to play a too-fancy game. I want to see us play a pro-style game, up and down the ice with short passes and support, and tonight we didn’t do that.”
McKenzie collected his fifth goal of the season at 18:58 of the second period, three seconds after an interference penalty to Barrie’s Rasmus Andersson expired. Blackwood kicked the rebound of a Marcus McIvor shot from the left point to McKenzie, who fired the puck into a gaping net.
Mangiapane replied at 9:47 of the third period, redirecting Ben Harpur’s shot from the blue line over Smith’s blocker.
Both teams pressed for the go-ahead goal. Seconds after Hampus Olsson and Mike Amadio failed to get bouncing pucks behind Blackwood, Smith sprawled to get his right pad on a Brendan Lemieux shot from the deep slot.
Each team had time with the man advantage in overtime, in which the Battalion held a 5-1 edge in shots. The Colts had the best chance, with Smith making a fine save on Lemieux in close.
In the shootout, Blackwood foiled Alex Henriksson and Ryan Kujawinski before Amadio fired the puck off the right post. Mangiapane beat Smith with a forehand deke before the goaltender stopped Kevin Labanc.
The Colts will play another divisional opponent when they host the Mississauga Steelheads this Saturday January 17th at the Barrie Molson Centre. Click here for tickets.