Birds Batter Generals in Oshawa, 7-2
OSHAWA, Ont. — Oliver Peer and Connor Clattenburg each scored twice and Nathan Day made 30 saves as the Flint Firebirds hammered the Oshawa Generals, 7-2, on Friday night at the Tribute Communities Centre.
Flint struck and started the scoring on the first shot of the game Matthew Jenken wired a breakout pass to spring Clattenburg free down the left wing. He gained the zone and fired a shot from the top of the left hash marks. Noah Bender got a piece of it with his blocker but the puck popped over his shoulder, landed behind him in the blue paint and tumbled across the goal line to make the score 1-0.
Three minutes later, Simon Slavicek wristed a shot into traffic from the top of the right circle. Nathan Aspinall skated from right-to-left across the slot and deflected the puck in front of the net. He picked up the rebound and tucked it into the waiting cage, extending the lead to 2-0.
Flint struck again less than two minutes later for its third goal on just its fifth shot of the game. Oliver Peer launched a slapper from the right point that Bender turned aside. Jimmy Lombardi pounced on the rebound, reached out and slid it past Bender and in, pushing the score to 3-0.
Oshawa answered near the halfway point of the first as Rasmus Kumpulainen intercepted a Flint pass, quickly turned and barreled into the attacking zone. He fired a snapshot through the five-hole of Day to shorten the Flint advantage to 3-1.
The Birds cracked back though and answered less than two minutes later. Nolan Dann possessed the puck in the attacking zone and curled around the right circle toward the high slot. He drew the defense and slid a pass toward Slavicek who was alone at the right faceoff dot. Slavicek stepped into the shot and blasted a one-timer past Jacob Oster to give Flint a 4-1 lead.
The Firebirds struck twice in the middle frame with both goals coming from Peer. Less than seven minutes into the period, Peer forced a turnover in the neutral zone and was off to the races. As he sped in ahead of the defender, Peer deked from his forehand to his backhand and snuck the puck through Oster’s legs to make the score 5-1.
Following a successful, five minute penalty kill, the Firebirds got another one as Peer got the puck free, split a pair of defenders and danced into the attacking end. He again stickhandled from his forehand to his backhand and flipped a shot over the glove of Oster for his 30th goal of the season that pushed the lead to 6-1.
Flint got one more in the third as Clattenburg cleaned up a rebound off a Nolan Dann shot that made it 7-1. Oshawa managed one more goal late when Kumpulainen converted a one-timer on a power play, cutting the lead back to 7-2.
Peer’s two goals and one assist pushed his total to 15 points (8 G, 7 A) in 11 games as a Firebird, Dann now has points in 17 of his last 18 games and Clattenburg recorded his first two-goal game of the season. Day made 30 saves on 32 shots to earn the win in net.
The Firebirs improved to 20-25-3-1 in the win while the Generals dropped to 26-18-4-2. Flint finishes their two-game road swing Saturday in Brantford with their first meeting against the Bulldogs this season. Puck drop at the Brantford Civic Centre is scheduled for 4 p.m.
Photo courtesy of Oshawa Generals
Story: Brandon Mills // flintfirebirds.com